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Canada Post-Graduation Work Permit Visa Program -(PGWPP)

What is a post-graduation work permit?

Applicants can receive only 1 post-graduation work permit in their lifetime.

The Canada Post-Graduation Work Permit Visa Program - (PGWPP) allows students who have graduated from eligible Canadian designated learning institutions to obtain an open work permit to gain valuable Canadian work experience. Skilled Canadian work experience in the national occupational code A, O or B that is gained through the PGWPP helps graduates qualify for permanent residence in Canada through the Canadian experience class, within Express Entry.


Post-graduation work permits eligibility requirements

To obtain a post-graduation work permit, the applicant must currently hold valid temporary status or have left Canada. They must have graduated from an eligible designated learning institution (DLI). They must also submit clear evidence that they meet all of the following criteria:

  • They have completed an academic, vocational or professional training program at an eligible institution in Canada that is at least 8 months in duration leading to a degree, diploma or certificate.
    1. leave from studies
    2. final academic session
  • They have received a transcript and an official letter from the eligible DLI confirming that they have met the requirements to complete their program of study.
  • Note: The transcript and official letter must be included in a post-graduation work permit application.
  • Within 180 days of the date of applying for the post-graduation work permit, applicants must also meet one of the following criteria:

  • They hold a valid study permit.
  • They held a study permit.
  • They were authorized to study in Canada without the requirement to obtain a study permit under paragraphs 188(1)(a) and (b) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations.
Post-Graduation Work Permit validity and application

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Post-graduation work permits are exempt from Labour Market Impact Assessments. They are considered open and coded as C43.

With a post-graduation work permit, as with all open work permits, graduates can

  • work full time
  • work part time
  • be self-employed

The supporting regulatory framework for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) is subparagraph 205(c)(ii) of the Immigration and Refugees Protection Regulations.

Post-graduation work permit validity

A post-graduation work permit may be issued based on the length of the study program for a minimum of 8 months up to a maximum of 3 years.

When determining the length of a post-graduation work permit, officers may consider the duration of the program of study in Canada and confirm it with supporting documents. Regularly scheduled breaks (for example, scheduled winter and summer breaks) should be included in the time accumulated toward the length of the post-graduation work permit.

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