You may be eligible to live and work in Canada after you complete your studies
A post-graduation work permit (PGWP) allows you to remain in Canada and work full time after you complete a certificate, diploma or degree that is at least 8 months in length.
You don’t need a job offer to apply and can work anywhere in Canada in any occupation, even if it’s unrelated to your studies. A PGWP is a practical way to apply what you’ve learned at SLC, advance your professional goals and gain Canadian work experience, which you might need to qualify for certain permanent resident programs.
To be eligible for a PGWP, you must have:
- Completed a program of study that lasted at least eight months and led to a degree, diploma or certificate
- Studied full-time each academic session without taking time away from studies. This does not include scheduled program breaks, such as winter break or summer break for undergraduate students.
- Completed at least 50% of your program in Canada, which is calculated based on the number of courses completed in Canada
- Completed at least 50% of your program in-person
You’re still eligible for the PGWP if:
- You studied part-time in your final academic session only
- You took an authorized gap in studies for less than 150 days
- You were eligible for the temporary policies in place until December 31, 2021 which allow courses moved online due to COVID-19 to count towards the length of your PGWP as well as permit more than 50% of studies to be completed online or outside of Canada.
See full eligibility details from the Government of Canada website.
How you can apply for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) depends on where you’re applying from. Most people must apply online for their PGWP. Find out how you can apply for your PGWP.
Make sure you’re eligible for a PGWP before you apply. You have 180 days after your school issues your final marks to apply for a PGWP.
When you apply, make sure you pay the Open work permit holder fee and the standard work permit fee.
Preparing Your Documents for the PGWP application
All you need to apply for a PGWP is:
- an official letter from your school that confirms you have completed your study program (Confirmation of Program Completion Letter), and
- an official transcript, or a copy of your transcript from your school’s website. (this can be the Unofficial Transcript from SLC.me).
Steps to get required documents:
Step 1: You must ensure that you have ‘Applied to Graduate in the SLC.me portal. If you have not done this already, please do that right away. This step must be completed for our system to issue documentation to you.
Step 2: Visit the SLC.me portal and download an unofficial copy of your transcript. Please double check that all your grades have been posted on the transcript before using it in your application.
Step 3: You will receive your Confirmation of Program Completion Letter 6 weeks after you complete the last day of your program, at the latest. An electronic copy will be emailed to your SLC student email. This will be sent to you automatically if you have ‘Applied to Graduate’.
NOTE: If your study permit expires within three weeks after you complete the last day of your program, we will process it urgently. Please email your International Student Advisor with your SLC ID#, and a copy of your study permit that clearly shows the expiry date. This is only for students who have study permits expiring right away.
You can work full-time while waiting for a decision on your post-graduation work permit application if, at the time you submitted your application, you:
- had a valid study permit,
- had completed your program of study,
- were eligible to work off-campus without a permit, and
- followed the working hour guidelines based on my study permit.
Generally, no. You must stop working once you’ve received your program completion letter.
You can continue to work after you finished your studies only if:
- you’ve already applied for a work permit, or
- you’re starting a new study program
You must stop working the day you receive your completion documents. You can continue to work as a student for 20 hours until then. We recommend you get your PGWP application ready, so you can apply the same day you receive it. Once you submit the application, you can work full-time.
Please check here for IRCC application processing times.
We recommend you attend a PGWP Workshop to learn all the rules and processes to apply for your PGWP. You can look for upcoming workshop dates on URSLC.