Coronavirus has significantly affected the education system in Canada. Learning institutions have been forced to temporarily close in accordance with health safety precautions and public directives. This has led many students, especially international students, tp grow concerned over their studies and their Post Graduate Work Permit.

With travel bans being implemented, students from abroad are concerned about when and how they can enter Canada. Some might be exempt from this restriction, but they would need first to undergo various health checks and assessments. 

To shed light on the situation, below is a guide that answers some of the most common concerns of international students regarding their education and work permit in Canada.

What can international students in Canada do?

With the threat of COVID-19, many schools and universities have temporarily closed to ensure health safety and avoid further infection. Many international students are confused and worried about what they should do with their study permits and what will happen with their education. Fortunately, the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) had laid out instructions for international students.

1. For international students with valid study permits

They can continue their study programs through online classes should their university offer this alternative learning. They will not receive a deduction from their program length affecting their Post-Graduation Work Permit while they complete their study programs online, whether inside or outside Canada.

2. For international students whose study permits will expire shortly

They can extend the validity of their permit online, as long as they have a valid status. Otherwise, they would need to restore their status once it expires.

3. For international students who would want to continue to work

In Canada, international students can only work full-time off-campus during breaks in the academic year. During academic sessions, they are only allowed to take part-time jobs that take no more than 20 hours per week. However, the IIRC has modified the guidelines for student work authorization for this time.

According to them, students can continue to work in Canada whether they are part-time students or were forced to take breaks in their studies. Additionally, IIRC told that those who work in essential industries are exempted from the 20-hour limit until August 31, 2020.

The essential services they recognize are:

  • Energy and utilities
  • Food and water
  • Health
  • Finance
  • Information and communication
  • Transportation
  • Safety
  • Manufacturing sectors
  • Government

If you need further assistance, it would be best if you consult with an immigration advisor.

4. For 2020 graduates who wish to remain and work in Canada

International students who would like to work in Canada should apply for a Post Graduate Work Permit. This permit allows international graduates from Canadian learning institutions to gain valuable work experience in the country.

The eligibility requirements for this permit include:

  • Have a valid status
  • Attended a designated learning institute
  • Completed over 50 percent of their course in Canada
  • Within 180 of receiving their final marks
  • Completed a study program for at least eight months and has a degree certification or diploma
Canadian Visa Application
Immigration to Canada


With the closure of Canadian learning institutions, online study programs are widely promoted and encouraged. Apart from that, the IIRC has allowed students, especially those in essential industries, to continue to work in Canada. They also modified some regulations in consideration of the students’ welfare amid COVID-19. International students who have other concerns should consult with an immigration consultant in Toronto to guide them throughout the process.

If you’re looking for professional help from a trusted firm, please contact our immigration consultant in Toronto at or call 1-888- 404-8472.

Recommended Posts

No comment yet, add your voice below!

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *