In 2021-23, a remarkable 355,000 international students in Canada successfully obtained their permanent resident status, as per the latest findings from IRCC. In the broader context, over 627,000 former temporary residents secured Canadian permanent residence (PR) in the past three years, showcasing a proactive approach by IRCC in processing PR claims amidst the challenges posed by the pandemic.
Despite the hurdles faced in 2020, where immigration figures saw a significant dip, Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan for 2024 and 2025 signals a commitment to higher quotas, reaching 485,000 and 500,000, respectively. However, concerns have been raised regarding the housing crisis and the ability to accommodate such significant immigration numbers.
The Journey of International Students So Far
Diving into the journey of these international students, their experience is akin to a transformation, navigating academic pursuits, cultural integration, and now, a path to permanent residency. This rise in transitioning to permanent resident status reflects the openness of Canadian immigration policies.
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Even amid the challenges posed by the global pandemic, Canada’s Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has showcased resilience in processing permanent residency times. This shows that during challenging times solidifies Canada’s reputation as a nation that values and nurtures global talent.
Canada’s proactive approach extends beyond the success of international students. With a surge in immigration quotas projected for 2024 and 2025, reaching 485,000 and 500,000, Canada reaffirms its commitment to being a global hub for talent acquisition. However, this ambitious goal is not without its share of concerns, notably the ongoing housing crisis.
As Canada charts an ambitious course for increased immigration, particularly in the wake of the pandemic, the housing crisis emerges as a pivotal challenge. Locals express apprehensions about accommodating half a million immigrants annually, emphasizing the need to address domestic concerns.
However, while struggling with housing concerns, Canada continues to be a drop of hope for international students seeking a promising future. The 355,000-strong cohort of new permanent residents signifies the success of Canada’s integration efforts and serves as an inspiration for prospective students worldwide.
New 2024 Rules: Living Cost, PGWP Program, and Policies to Protect International Students in Canada
Canada recognized globally as a top destination for international students, has announced pivotal changes aimed at enhancing the well-being of these students. The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced crucial reforms effective January 1, 2024, about the cost-of-living financial requirement for study permit applicants.
The adjustment, reflecting 75% of the low-income cut-off (LICO), addresses the rising living costs. Acknowledging the financial strain faced by students due to outdated thresholds, the new requirement ensures that applicants are adequately prepared for the Canadian way of life. Furthermore, Minister Miller emphasized the importance of supporting international students, with plans to implement targeted pilots in collaboration with partners for underrepresented cohorts.
The announcement aligns with recent reforms to the Canada International Student Program 2024 and temporary policies:
- With a focus on acknowledging institutions that excel in providing high-quality services, including housing.
- Underscoring the importance of designated learning institutions offering robust support to international students, ensuring a positive academic experience.
- The waiver on off-campus work hour limits will be extended, allowing international students to work more than 20 hours per week until April 30, 2024.
- Enabling the counting of online study towards post-graduation work permits for students commencing their study program before September 1, 2024.
- Unfortunately, the temporary policy providing an additional 18-month work permit will not be extended beyond December 31, 2023.
In short, Minister Miller’s announcement reflects a strong aim to build immigration policies that balance economic goals with the well-being of international students in Canada. Canada’s allure as a global education destination as over 355,000 international students have successfully transitioned to become Canadian permanent residents in three years (2021-2023). This monumental achievement not only underscores the quality of education and welcoming environment Canada offers but also positions the country as a magnet for diverse talents worldwide.