How to Find a Job in Canada as an International Student

The greatest thing about being an international student in Canada is that along with your study permit, you’re able to work part-time as well. This includes both on and off-campus. Working while studying will give you working experience as well as extra cash to spend on excursions all over Canada or save for something bigger.

When it comes to the actual job, you have many choices. You could try to find work along your field of study or apply for jobs that simply pay well.

Continue reading to learn how to find a job in Canada as an international student.

How Do I Become an International Student in Canada?


It’s no surprise that many students flock to Canada to study various subjects in both universities and colleges. After all, Canada is home to some of the best tertiary institutions in the world. Anyone who is thinking of studying in Canada will first need to get a study permit.

Study Permit

What is a Canadian study permit?

A study permit is a document issued to an international student, by the government, to study at one of the Designated Learning Institutions (DLI) in Canada. It’s good to note that your study permit doesn't act as a visa as well. You’ll have to obtain either a visitor's visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). If approved for the permit, the government will issue you with a visa as well.

Your study visa will be valid for the length of your study program plus an extra 90 days. These extra days can be used to apply for a work permit and find a job within your field.

How do I apply for a study permit?

To be eligible to study in Canada you must:

  • Have an acceptance letter from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI);
  • Have a valid passport or travel document;
  • Obey the law, have no criminal record and get a police certificate (if required);
  • Be in good health and get a medical exam (if required); and
  • Prove you can finance yourself and any family members who go with you to Canada.

It’s good practice to apply for the permit before you come to Canada, even though it’s possible to apply for the study permit when you arrive in Canada at the port of entry. This will depend on whether the option is available to you. You could either apply online or via mail. There certainly are more benefits to applying online, such as:

  1. No courier fees or delivery time, the application is instant;
  2. Your applications may be processed quicker;
  3. It helps make sure your application is completed properly before submitting;
  4. You can submit documents quickly; and
  5. You get updates on the status of your application directly in your online account.

Did you know?

If you’re a legal resident of one of the below countries you’re able to get your study permit faster by applying through the Student Direct Stream (SDS). the processing time can be as fast as 20 calendar days.

Student Direct Stream
Eligible Countries
Antigua and Barbuda
Costa Rica
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Trinidad and Tobago

Working in Canada as an International Student


There are many ways to find a job in Canada as an international student, however, you can generally use the below steps. Employers in Canada are often keen to hire students for part-time positions, and there is a broad variety of jobs.

1. Update your resume

Tailoring your resume to the job you’re applying for can give you a big advantage, as well as writing a cover letter. Cover letters are usually required when applying for a job, and tailoring them to the vacancy will give you the chance to explain why you’re best for the position, other qualities you may have and even explain your visa status.

2. Network

Networking is crucial no matter what you apply for and where. If you’re applying for a job on campus, for a teacher’s assistant, for example, networking within the faculty would be the best thing for you. Going to networking events that are in your field will only help you in the future.

3. Check online

When looking for a job, the internet can be your best friend. There are many popular websites that are made for just that. A few of those websites are as follows:

  • LinkedIn;
  • Indeed;
  • Monster; and
  • SimplyHired.

4. Consider internships and volunteering

If you would really like to have an advantage over other students then considering an internship or volunteering within your study field will do just that. Many companies love to see that you have experience through internships and volunteering. It’s a great step to securing that future job!

Live and Work in Canada After You Graduate

Many international students continue to stay in Canada through a program called the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) which allows international graduates from Canadian institutions to obtain an open work permit.

Post-Graduation Work Permit


As mentioned before, the Post-Graduation Work Permit will allow international students to gain Canadian work experience through an open work permit. To be eligible for the PGWP you’ll need the following:

  • Have completed an academic, vocational, or professional training program at an eligible institution in Canada for at least 8 months leading to a degree, diploma, or degree;
  • Be a full-time student;
  • Have a transcript and official letter from an eligible DLI confirming that you have met the requirements of the program; and
  • Have or had a valid study permit or had the authorization to study without a study permit.

Your PGWP validity will depend on the length of your program. It can be as short as eight months or as long as three years. Below is a table showing how you can determine the length of your visa.

Determining the Length of Your PGWP
Length of Study Program Length of Work Permit
Eight months - two years Same length as your study program (Master's and Doctoral candidates may be eligible for a three-year work permit)
Two years or longer Three years
More than one program completed within two years Length of both programs combined (if the combined length is two years or longer the work permit should be valid for three years)

Working in Canada

Working in Canada can be beneficial to your working experience as well as your Canadian immigration journey. The Post-Graduation Work Permit can be your pathway to Canadian permanent residency. This can be done through the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), which falls under the Express Entry system.

If you aren’t yet a student in Canada, can assist you on your immigration journey. As a client of, you’ll have your own, personal student advisor that will not only help you with the entire process of the study permit and submit documents on your behalf but also help you complete your motivational letter for the school of your choice.

With us doing all the heavy lifting, all you need to do is find a job in Canada as an international student.