In general, a valid Study Permit allows an international student to work ON-CAMPUS ONLY at the institution where he/she is registered as a full-time student. Since campus employment is difficult to find, students should not depend on a campus job as a source of income.
Who Needs a Work Permit?
To work or even do some volunteer activities off-campus, a Work Permit is required. In most cases, before a student can apply for a Work Permit, the employer must prove that a Canadian or Permanent Resident of Canada could not be hired for the position. This process is called Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) confirmation. It is also referred to as obtaining a Labour Market Opinion.
Many activities that do not provide financial remuneration (wages or commission) are considered work by Citizenship and Immigration Canada and require a Work Permit.
When is a Work Permit NOT Required?
Some volunteer activities and on-campus employment do not require a Work Permit.
In general, a valid Study Permit allows an international student to work ON-CAMPUS ONLY at the institution where he/she is registered as a full-time student. On-campus is defined as employment facilities that are physically located within the boundaries of the campus. The employer can be the university itself, a student organization, private business, or private contractor providing services to the institution on the campus. Students may also undertake self employment without a Work Permit providing that the work is done on the campus.
Since campus employment is difficult to find, students should not depend on a campus job as a source of income.
A) WORK PERMITS AVAILABLE TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS
International students may obtain Work Permits for off-campus employment without HRSDC confirmation in a limited number of situations. The following Work Permits are available to eligible students and do not require HRSDC confirmation:
There is a special program for spouses/common-law partners of international students. If you are a full-time student and you hold a valid Study Permit, your husband, wife, or common-law partner may apply for a Work Permit once both of you are in Canada. Your spouse/common-law partner will not need to have a job offer or HRSDC confirmation before applying for the Work Permit. This type of Work Permit is intended for spouses/common-law partners who are not students themselves.
C) SOCIAL INSURANCE NUMBER
A Social Insurance Number (SIN) is required to work in Canada.
- For more information about Social Insurance Numbers (SINs) visit http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/en/sc/sin/index.shtml
Need More Information?
Contact an ICS International Student Advisor:
Ph: (204) 474-8503
Ph: (204) 474-6896
Naomi Fujiwara (on leave)
Ph: (204) 474-6896
Visit the Citizenship & Immigration Canada website: