Post-Graduation Work Permit

Post-Graduation Work Permit

18 Jan, 2017 Post-Graduation Work Permit

Whether or not you’re currently eligible for an existing Canadian immigration program, a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) can be a great tool for international students to gain valuable Canadian work experience. The holder of a PGWP can work for any employer, in any occupation they wish.


Did you know? As an international student in Canada, you may be able to stay in Canada and work once you graduate. With a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), you can bridge the gap between your student status and permanent resident status, gain valuable Canadian work experience, and more!


To be clear, a PGWP is a temporary work permit. It’s only valid for a predetermined amount of time. In other words, it’s not a direct path to permanent residence in Canada.

The length of time that your PGWP is valid depends on the length of the program you graduated from.

If your program was anywhere between eight months and two years, your PGWP is valid for the same length of time as the program you’re graduating from. If your program was two years or more, your PGWP is valid for three years.

That said, if you’re interested in making your stay in Canada permanent, the PGWP can be a great tool to help you get there.

To be eligible for a PGWP, you need to meet the following criteria:

  1. Have graduated from a program of study in Canada, from a designated learning institution and
  2. Your program of study in Canada was at least eight months long


A PGWP is an open work permit, which makes it different from most other types of work permits in two very important ways:

  1. It isn’t tied to a specific employer. If you have a PGWP, you can work anywhere in Canada, for any Canadian employer, in any industry.
  2. You do not need to have a job offer when you apply for it.

Another important thing to know about PGWPs is that you can only get it once. If you have previously had a PGWP, you are not eligible to apply for another one. You also cannot extend your PGWP.

Unless you apply for and receive Canadian permanent residence while your PGWP is valid, you may have to leave your job, and the country, when it expires.


You can think of a PGWP as a pathway to permanent residence. It’s not an immigration program in itself, but it can be used as a stepping stone for a lot of Canadian immigration programs.

First off, to apply for a PGWP, you need to be an international student in Canada. IRCC has said on numerous occasions that they would like to specifically target international students for permanent residence:

We must do more to attract students to this country as permanent residents... They are the cream of the crop, in terms of potential future Canadians.

- Immigration Minister John McCallum, March 2016

International students are the future of Canadian immigration. They are educated, young, and have a demonstrated ability to integrate well into Canadian society. They also already speak one of Canada’s official languages.

Programs like the PGWP are specifically designed to help international students obtain Canadian permanent residence.

If you’re already eligible for a Canadian immigration program, a PGWP can help you maintain continuous legal status in Canada while your application for permanent residence is being processed. In the meantime, you have most of the same privileges that you would have as a permanent resident. You can live and work anywhere you want and then seamlessly transition to permanent status.

If you’re not currently eligible for a Canadian immigration program, a PGWP can improve your eligibility. Depending on how long your program was, you could get enough skilled work experience to qualify for a federal or provincial program. Canadian work experience is also considered very valuable to Canadian employers. So having Canadian work experience can increase your chances of receiving a job offer. While you’re working in Canada, you can also meet others in your field and grow your professional network, which can also lead to a job offer.


Study-2-Immigrate is the Canadim Team’s program for international students. From finding the right program to getting your student permit, our team of experts are with you every step of the way. Find out if you’re eligible to come study in Canada today:



The Canadim Team!

No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

?> });