A recent study by IDP Education, titled “Emerging Futures,” reveals that Canada is the most preferred destination for international students.
The survey, conducted in March, shows that over 25% of respondents chose Canada as their top choice for international study among four major destination countries: Canada, the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom.
The primary reason for this preference is the opportunity to gain work experience after graduation.
The survey included 20,000 participants, 63% of whom stated that post-study work is the main or an influencing factor in their choice of study destination. Furthermore, 72% expressed their intention to apply for a work visa after graduation.
The availability of a post-study work visa was a significant consideration for 61% of students intending to study in Canada, excluding the main markets of India and China. This percentage increased to 63% for Nigerian students, 75% for Vietnamese students, and 58% for students from Ghana.
Christine Wach, Director of Client Partnerships for North America at IDP Connect, was quoted in the report. She stated that the survey findings show that “students see Canada as a welcoming, affordable, and safe place to study with good work opportunities available upon graduation.”
The study found that 53% of students consider the employment opportunities available after graduation as a top consideration when selecting a destination. High-quality education was a deciding factor for 61% of students, and 43% were looking for part-time work opportunities while studying.
International students in Canada are allowed to work up to 20 hours a week throughout the academic year without obtaining a work permit. They may work full-time during winter and summer holidays provided they return to full-time studies the following semester.
The study found that 81% of respondents were already working or planning to work part-time during their studies.
Post-Graduation Work Permits
Canada offers graduating international students the opportunity to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) as a way to gain experience living and working in Canada. This experience can be used towards getting status as a permanent resident and eventually becoming a Canadian citizen, if so desired.
Why Does Canada Need International Students?
Canada is currently host to over 800,000 international students and works hard to position itself as a top destination for post-secondary education. Retaining graduates in Canada after they complete their studies can be beneficial for the labour force and economy, as the country’s population is aging and the number of job vacancies remains high.
The strong educational ties between Canada and foreign countries are set to grow stronger with the increasing number of foreign students choosing to study in Canada.
The efforts of the Canadian government to facilitate the visa application process for foreign students are commendable and are expected to further enhance the educational exchange between Canada and other countries.
Image Credits: Photo by javier trueba on Unsplash