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Canada Named Top Study Abroad Destination for Second Year in a Row

Source: Educations.com

A new survey of 2,700 international students names Canada as the best country for studying abroad for the second consecutive year. While other countries like Australia, the United Kingdom, and the USA are typically thought of as leading places to earn an international education, overseas learners chose Canada once again.

Students cited the multicultural population and tolerant society as reasons that made Canada so appealing. The Canadian government has made diversity a priority and people around the world have taken notice. Nature was also a selling point for some students. Yes, winters can be cold but the beauty of the Northern Lights in Alberta, Niagara Falls in Ontario or views of the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans are hard to ignore. Especially if you enjoy posting on social media.

Canadian colleges and universities have reputations as leaders in areas like STEM, Business, and Animation to name a few. With lower tuition costs than in other top countries, Canadian institutions have set themselves apart in the eyes of overseas students and will continue to welcome them for years to come.

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International Students Discuss Studying Abroad During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The thought of studying abroad during a global pandemic may seem daunting to many. However international students in countries around the world are managing as best they can while they pursue their higher education overseas. In the above video, THE Student asked five overseas students about their university experiences in the age of COVID-19.

The students highlighted a rage of topics from what the visa application process was like to advice on making friends in online lectures. They also shared their most important tips for anyone who is thinking about their own study abroad experience in the future.

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Relief for International Students As Canada Extends Work Permits Due to COVID-19

Beginning January 27, foreign nationals in Canada with an expired or soon-to-be-expired post-graduation work permit can apply for an 18-month extension

In a recent media release for the University of Toronto, author Yanan Wang interviewed Nana Sakyi, an international student from Ghana who recently completed a master’s degree in Canada. The article, dated January 27 2021, shed light on the apprehensions and nervousness of several International students like Sakyi, following a global pandemic that brought the world to a halt. 

In addition to health risks posed by the novel coronavirus, for international students the last several months were particularly uncertain because of the possibility that their work permits would run out before they find employment, putting their immigration status at risk.

Luckily, in an effort to ease the strain on international students who are graduating from post-secondary institutions amid the pandemic, the federal government recently announced a plan that will give them more time to find work. Foreign nationals in Canada with an expired or soon-to-be-expired post-graduation work permit can currently apply for an 18-month extension.

The policy seeks to help foreign nationals who are currently in Canada meet the requisite work hours to be eligible to apply for permanent residence.

“The work permit extension gives international graduates another year and a half to contribute to the Canadian workforce. That’s a huge benefit to Canada and the individual students who wish to take it up,” said Katherine Beaumont, senior director of global learning opportunities and international student success at U of T’s Centre for International Experience (CIE).

Beaumont added that the centre plans to make more international students aware of the new policy through alumni newsletters and the university’s career development resources. In response to a growing international student population and an increased need for guidance and advice on the documentation required to be an international student in Canada, U of T has increased the number of certificated international student immigration advisers based at CIE.  As a result, CIE has been able to increase immigration advising to students by a factor of four since the pandemic began – all while adding new ways to serve students, including online and phone appointments, webinars and drop-ins.

 “A lot of international students were very, very happy about this policy because this gives them the time to work towards starting the permanent residence process,” said Pooja Gupta, who earned her engineering master’s degree last year from U of T’s Institute of Biomedical Engineering and serves as president of the school’s International Students’ Council.

“Canada’s immigration policies are what gives the country an edge in terms of attracting talent.”

Source: University of Toronto

COVID-19 Guide for International Students Arriving in Canada

The federal government has released a guide for international students who are coming to Canada, and navigating travel restrictions. It’s called “COVID-19: Guide for International Students in Canada Arriving from Abroad.” The government outlines the roles and responsibilities of designated learning institutions (DLIs), provinces and territories and the government of Canada in supporting international students. The guide is aligned with health advice from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Any international student or their accompanying family members with symptoms of COVID-19 will not be allowed to board their flight. If symptoms show up upon arrival in Canada, a health Canada officer will perform a screening and the person may not be allowed to enter, or transported to a hospital for a medical examination. International students are allowed to come to Canada to go to school at an institution that has a coronavirus readiness plan. The list of approved institutions are kept up-to-date on the Government of Canada website.

International students need a study permit or study permit approval, but this is not a travel authorization in and of itself. IRCC will communicate with students once the travel authorization has been granted. This authorization may be cancelled if there are any changes in circumstances at their school, or the province or territory.

In order to be given access to come to Canada, international students need to show border services officer that they are entering Canada for non-discretionary purposes, and that they are studying at one of the approved DLIs, among other requirements. International students may be refused entry if they do not meet these requirements.

Immediate family members may be allowed to accompany international students. This would include students’ spouses, dependent children, or their legal parent or guardian if they are a minor. Family members must also show border officers that they are travelling for a non-optional, non-discretionary reason, such as helping the student get established in Canada.

International students and their accompanying family members must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. They need to wear a mask or face covering during travel, including to their place of quarantine. Before coming to Canada students need to make a quarantine plan. Border officers will also consider this plan, when determining if the student can enter the country. While in quarantine, students should ensure that they have individual accommodations, and that they monitor themselves for symptoms. They should avoid public and shared spaces. They also need to arrange to have access to basic necessities like food and medicine. In addition to physical distancing, they need to avoid contact with people who are at higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults, and people with underlying medical conditions, or who are immunocompromised.

Places with shared living accommodations, such as hostels, are not acceptable for quarantine or isolation. International students living with other people, such as with a host family or homestay provider, will need to self-isolate from other members in the accommodation or home. This means having a separate bedroom and washroom if possible. It also means physical distancing from other household members and frequently disinfecting surfaces.

Minors must also undergo mandatory quarantine. Parents or guardians must ensure that appropriate arrangements have been made for their child before they leave for their home country. Also, international students are asked to confirm their eligibility for heath-care coverage and Canada. If they are not covered, they can get private insurance that includes COVID-19 coverage before departure.

Top MBA Programs in Canada

In our most recent blog post we discussed Canada as the emerging destination for MBA programs. As more and more international students are looking towards Canadian universities for their MBA programs, here is a list of top Canadian Business Schools that offer excellent programs and opportunities for a Masters In Business Administration. These universities in Canada also rank among the most preferable destinations for international students due to their flexibility of the subjects and quality of education.

University of Toronto – Rotman School of Management

Ranked as 65th globally by the Financial Times, Rotman School of Management has a variety of MBA courses on offer. As you move forward in your career, an MBA from the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management gives you the knowledge, agility and confidence you need to transform your future. Master business fundamentals and fulfill your potential with Canada’s leading MBA program.

Western University – Ivey Business School

Ivey’s one-year MBA Program covers all the fundamentals and is grounded in a real world, practical learning experience featuring the case method approach. This transformational experience is at the core of Ivey’s leadership development culture.

York University – Schulich School of Business

Ranked as the top university by Forbes and CNN expansion this institute provides a MBA with flexibility. The Schulich School of Business is the business school of York University located in Toronto. The institution provides undergraduate and graduate degree and diploma programs in business administration, finance, accounting, business analytics, public administration and international business as well as a number of PhD and executive programs. Schulich’s degree programs balance quantitative and much sought after management and leadership skills. All programs combine classroom learning with case work and real world projects presented from multiple stakeholder perspectives.

University of British Columbia – Sauder School of Business

The 16-month, full-time program at UBC Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School is an opportunity for high-achieving, ambitious professionals to take their career to the next level. Seeking new opportunities? Want to take the lead in your field? Nurturing an entrepreneurial idea? This MBA program will stimulate your mind, give you fresh perspectives, and help you realize your personal and professional potential.

McGill University – Desautels Faculty of Management

Founded in 1906, the Desautels Faculty of Management at McGill University is ranked as one of the world’s top international business schools. The Faculty’s innovative programs and historic reputation for excellence continue to attract the finest students and the most prominent professors from around the globe to its downtown campus located in the vibrant metropolis of Montreal.

HEC Montreal

HEC Montreal is ranked as one of the top universities in Canada in an MBA. This university provides state-of-the-art facilities for students who are willing to pursue a career in business.

University of Ottawa – Telfer School of Management

The University of Ottawa is also one of the top universities for pursuing a MBA. They also have joint degree courses which help in building additional skills and also excel in business. The one of only 2 business schools in Canada and one of only 80 business schools in the world to have achieved the triple crown of accreditations. Named the highest value MBA program in Ontario by Canadian Business Magazine in 2016.

One on One Webinar: International Student Mobility

This session of the One on One webinar series features representatives from the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service and officials from Canada Campus Visits as they discuss international student mobility. Speakers in this video are, in order of appearance:

  • Husain F. Neemuchwala (President, Canada Campus Visits)
  • Karen Strang (Executive Director, Canada Campus Visits)
  • Paulo Orlandi (Canadian Trade Commissioner, Education, Forestry & Wood Products, Industrial Machinery, Brazil)
  • Mabelle Sawaqed-Hen (Canadian Trade Commissioner, Education & Training, United Arab Emirates)

How to Study in Canada Without Leaving Home

With international travel still difficult for much of the world in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada recently took steps to make it easier for students to begin studying at Canadian colleges and universities via the Internet while still in their home countries. They began by addressing overseas students with questions about how they could obtain a post-graduate work permit after completing their studies.

In regards to the change they made earlier in the year that made it able for students to apply for permits without all of the required paperwork, they reinforced that this is still the case but complete applications will be processed first.

They continued on to explain what is required to have an application pass both the Eligibility and Admissibility stages.

For future updates, be sure to follow the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship on Twitter and the official Canada Campus Visits social media accounts as well.

Canada Grants Travel Exemption to International Students

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Source: ICEF Monitor | Image: Hulu

In mid-March, the Canadian government announced a series of travel restrictions aimed to reduce the spread of novel coronavirus. These new rules, similar to those introduced in other countries, left international students in an uncertain position. Would students with study permits be able to enter Canada if they had been traveling or had not yet arrived in the country?

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has recently clarified the situation:

“Exemptions to the air travel restrictions will apply to foreign nationals who have already committed to working, studying or making Canada their home, and travel by these individuals will be considered essential travel for land border restrictions.”

Students who had either already been granted or approved for a study permit prior to restrictions coming into place would be able to cross the border. Those entering Canada will have to remain in self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival as a precaution in order to prevent the possible spread of COVID-19.

International Student Enrolments at Canadian Public Colleges and Universities

Source: Statistics Canada

New information about international students in who study in Canada has been released by the government. The infographic, shown above, outlines what Canadian provinces overseas students choose to study in, their country of origin and their fields of study. Here are some of the notable insights:

  • There were 225 source countries to send study abroad students to Canada
  • The top three source countries were, respectively: China, India and France
  • More men (158,454) than women (137,055) are studying in Canada
  • 80% of international students chose to study in the province of Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec
  • 33% are pursuing a college diploma or lower while 67% are in a bachelor-level program or higher

For additional informational on foreign students in Canada, visit Statistics Canada.

Students Say Canada Among Most Popular Study Abroad Countries

Source: Times Higher Education

A new study asked overseas students about the top factors they looked at when selecting a university. For the majority of them, location and ranking were cited as most important. Canada impressed the international students on many fronts thanks to the job opportunities available after graduation, cost of living and welcoming nature of the people in the country.