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New Measures to Enhance and Protect the International Student Program Announced

Published on: October 27th, 2023

Canada, renowned for its outstanding educational institutions, diverse society, and opportunities for international students, is taking steps to strengthen and secure its International Student Program.


The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, has introduced a set of measures aimed at safeguarding genuine international students from fraud and improving the program as a whole.

Key Changes on International Student Programs

1. Enhanced Verification for Letter of Acceptance

Starting from December 1, 2023, post-secondary Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs) will be required to directly verify each applicant’s letter of acceptance with IRCC. This thorough verification process is designed to protect prospective students from fake acceptance letters and prevent the problems some students faced earlier this year due to fraud investigations. It will also ensure that study permits are issued only when genuine acceptance letters are provided.

2. “Recognized Institution” Framework

By the fall semester of 2024, IRCC will introduce a “recognized institution” framework. This framework will benefit post-secondary DLIs that excel in providing excellent services, support, and results for international students. These institutions will receive priority processing of study permit applications for their potential students.

3. Reform of Post-Graduation Work Permit Program

In the coming months, IRCC will assess the criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program, with the goal of aligning it more closely with the needs of the Canadian job market, as well as regional and Francophone immigration goals.


Safeguarding International Students for a Brighter Future

Minister Miller highlighted the significant social, cultural, and economic contributions made by international students to Canada. The announced reforms focus on unscrupulous individuals who exploit genuine students for financial gain by quickly identifying fake acceptance letters. Institutions that demonstrate strong support for international students will receive recognition, ensuring that their applicants go through expedited processing. These changes will enable Canada to select and retain students who are best suited to meet the country’s economic and immigration objectives.

These measures represent the initial stage of changes identified during the review of the International Student Program and the broader engagement initiative, “An Immigration System for Canada’s Future.” This collaborative effort involves ongoing collaboration with educational institutions, provinces, territories, and organizations representing Canadian colleges and universities to enhance fraud detection and maintain the integrity of immigration programs.


Minister Miller stated:
“International students are talented, bright and deserving of a positive experience as they pursue their studies in Canada. We will continue to improve Canada’s International Student Program by protecting students and weeding out those who try to take advantage of them. Whether an international student stays and works after graduation or returns home, we want their time as a student in Canada to have been beneficial to their growth and aspirations.”


Learn more about your options to immigrate to Canada as an International Student, start by completing our free online assessment form.

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