Graduating from Canada? Don't Pack Your Bags Just Yet!


Congratulations on your upcoming graduation! Canada offers exciting opportunities for international students to stay and build a career after completing their studies. Here’s a quick breakdown of your options:

Important Points

  • Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP): This is the most common route for international graduates. You can apply for a PGWP that allows you to gain valuable Canadian work experience for up to three years. This experience can significantly boost your chances of qualifying for permanent residency (PR) later.
  • Eligibility: To qualify for a PGWP, your study program must have been at least eight months long and led to a degree, diploma, or certificate from a designated learning institution (DLI).
  • Co-op Programs: If your study program included a co-op (cooperative education) component, the work experience you gained during your co-op terms may count towards the minimum required for a PGWP.
  • Length of PGWP: The duration of your PGWP will depend on the length of your study program. Generally, for programs lasting more than eight months but less than two years, you’ll get a PGWP valid for the length of your studies. For programs exceeding two years, you’ll be eligible for a three-year PGWP.
  • Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs): Many Canadian provinces have Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) that offer immigration pathways specifically for international graduates with in-demand skills and work experience gained in Canada. Consider researching PNP options in your desired province of residence.
  • Express Entry System: After gaining Canadian work experience through a PGWP or other means, you can leverage your experience and skills to create an Express Entry profile. The Express Entry system is a points-based immigration system used by the Canadian government to select candidates for permanent residency.


Staying in Canada after graduation is a viable option! With a PGWP, relevant work experience, and potentially a PNP nomination, you can significantly increase your chances of obtaining permanent residency and building a successful future in Canada.