WORK AFTER GRADUATION
July 4th, 2023
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) recently announced a new temporary public policy which allows eligible foreign workers to study without a study permit. Please visit the IRCC webpage: Public policy allowing some work permit holders to study without a study permit for more information.
Post-graduation work permit
Full-time international students who graduate from post-secondary institutions in Canada are eligible to work in Canada for up to 3 years after graduation. You must apply for a post-graduation work permit within 180 days after receiving a written confirmation of your program completion from SFU. The calculation of the 180-day period begins the day the final marks are issued or the day formal written notification of program completion (such as the Credential Completion Letter or the Senate letter) is received, whichever comes first. Note that the date of your convocation ceremony has no relation to the 180-day application period for your PGWP.
If you are eligible to work off campus in your final term of studies, you may continue to work up to 20 hours per week until your Credential Completion letter becomes available via goSFU. However, you must stop working when your Credential Completion Letter is issued.
If your study permit is still valid when you submit your post-graduation work permit application and you meet the eligibility requirements set by IRCC, you may begin working full time only after submitting your application. If you have exceeded the maximum allowable hours of off-campus work and/or if you worked after your completion letter was issued, you are not eligible to work while you await processing of the work permit application.
Keep in mind that your study permit will automatically become invalid 90 days after the day you completed your studies, or on the expiry date printed on your study permit, whichever comes first.
A post-graduation work permit can only be issued for a maximum of 3 years and is only obtainable once in your lifetime. A job offer is not required.
Speak with an International Student Advisor, Immigration Specialist at least one term before you graduate to discuss your options if you'd like to apply. You may also review the "Post-Graduation Work Permit" handout on our Instruction Guides page for details on eligibility and how to apply.
Open work permit for Hong Kong recent graduates
Under IRCC's temporary public policy for certain Hong Kong residents, holders of a valid passport issued by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) or the United Kingdom to a British National Overseas (BNO) may be eligible for an open work permit of up to three years in length if they graduated with a degree or diploma from a designated learning institution in Canada (including SFU) in the ten years before they apply. Hong Kong residents who graduated with a degree (e.g.associate, bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral) from a foreign institution within the past ten years may also qualify for this work permit.
This public policy expires on February 7, 2025.
For more information about this work permit, including full eligibility requirements and how to apply, visit the IRCC website.