The information on this page may change.

The immigration information on this page has been reviewed by Regulated International Student Immigration Advisors (RISIAs) in compliance with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations. However, this is not a legal document and information may change without notice. Readers should always refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for the most up-to-date information.

Last updated February 2024


Who can apply

Any U of M undergraduate, graduate, or Extended Education (Intensive Program Packages) student who has met all of the requirements of their program of study and are eligible to graduate.

You must also be able to show Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that you meet the eligibility criteria for the PGWP:

  1. Must not have received a PGWP in the past – applicants can receive only 1 post-graduation work permit in their lifetime.
  2. Must have completed an academic, vocational or professional training program at an eligible institution in Canada that is at least 8 months in duration leading to a degree, diploma or certificate.
  3. Must have maintained full-time student status in Canada during each academic session of the program or programs of study they have completed and submitted as part of their post-graduation work permit application. The only exceptions are the final term of study or if a student took an authorized leave that meets the criteria outlined by IRCC. Note: There isn’t an authorized leave of absence policy at the undergraduate level at the U of M. Please refer to the document outlining UM’s current leave policies for international students.
  4. Must have received an official transcript and an official letter from the eligible DLI (University of Manitoba) confirming that they have met the requirements to complete their program of study.

Tip: You can’t apply for your PGWP until you have met all of the requirements of your program of study!

When to apply

To be eligible to apply for a PGWP, the application must be received by IRCC within 180 days of receiving written confirmation of program completion from the institution. You don’t need to wait until you’ve received your degree or attended your graduation ceremony to apply for the PGWP. You just need to have documentation to show to IRCC that you have met the requirements to complete your program of study.

- It is highly recommended to apply as soon as possible after you have received written confirmation of your program completion, when your study permit is still valid.
- Plan ahead! If your study permit is expiring at the same time that you will finish your program (example: if your last term of study is in the Winter term and your study permit expires at the end of April) then you should plan to extend your study permit around 3 months before it expires to request an additional 90 days after your program completion. This will ensure you have sufficient time to finish your program, request and receive all the required documentation to apply for your PGWP before the expiry of your study permit.

Where to apply

Applying from inside of Canada while your study permit is still valid is the most recommended option.

Inside Canada

To apply for a PGWP from inside of Canada, it is important to have a valid study permit when applying for the PGWP. 

  • If you have applied to extend your study permit before the expiry date and you are under maintained status, you must wait until your new study permit is received before you can apply for a PGWP. You still need to apply for the PGWP within the 180 days.
  • Remember your study permit will expire on the date marked on the permit or 90 days after the day you complete your studies, whichever comes first.
  • It is highly recommended to apply as soon as possible after you have received written confirmation of your program completion, when your study permit is still valid. 
  • If your study permit expires before you submit your PGWP application, you will have to restore your status. You can pay the restoration fee and include this receipt with your application for a PGWP, so that you’re effectively submitting both ‘applications’ together, even though you don’t need to fill out a separate application form for the restoration process. In this case, you would have to submit this application within 90 days of losing your student status, so that you’re applying within the period for restoration. In this case, remember you cannot work until your PGWP is approved. This option is more complex and is not recommended.

Outside Canada

You can submit an application from “outside of Canada” either by leaving the country, or if you’re inside of Canada and have maintained your temporary resident status as a visitor (meaning that you applied for a visitor record before your study permit expired). If you are applying for your PGWP as a visitor inside of Canada, you can submit your application online to be processed outside of Canada and can stay in Canada with valid visitor status while the application is being processed, but you can’t work until you’ve received your PGWP.

Tip:The most recommended option is to apply from inside of Canada, as early as possible after completing your program, while your study permit is still valid.

What to include (UM documentation)

Confirmation of Eligibility to Graduate: For undergraduate and graduate students. Request this letter after your final grades are posted in Aurora (undergraduate students) or you’ve submitted your thesis/comprehensive exam and forms through the M-Space platform to the Faculty of Graduate Studies (graduate students). How to request the eligibility to graduate letter through Aurora.

Letter of Completion: For Extended Education students in the Intensive Program Packages. This will be sent to students in these programs automatically around four weeks after program completion dates listed on their letter of acceptance.

Official Transcript: For all applicants. Information and steps on how to request your official transcript through Aurora.

Letter of explanation (if needed): This is an optional document which can be uploaded in the ‘Client Information’ section of the document checklist. This document would be written by the applicant and would provide additional information or details that they would want to be considered by the IRCC officer reviewing their application.

Tip:  Do not order any documentation from the Registrar’s Office until your final grades are posted (undergraduate students) or until you’ve submitted your thesis & forms to the Faculty of Graduate studies through M-Space (graduate students).

Working after program completion

Before applying for PGWP

You may only work part-time hours until the first date you receive written confirmation of program completion from your educational institution (for instance, an email, a letter, a transcript or a diploma), provided your study permit remains valid during this period. Once a student receives written confirmation of program completion from their institution, they are no longer authorized to continue to work in Canada, as they no longer meet the eligibility criteria to work off-campus (R186(v)). At this point, the student should submit their application for their PGWP. 

After for applying for PGWP

You may be able to work full-time while IRCC processes your application. Section R186(w) allows students who have a submitted an application for the PGWP to work full-time if they meet the following criteria:

  • They were already able to work off campus during their studies (meaning that they were a full-time student during each academic session of their program)
  • They applied for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) before their study permit expired
  • They are waiting for a decision on their work permit application

- You must stop working on the day that you receive your Confirmation of Eligibility to Graduate or Completion Letter (Extended Education students). 
- The Registrar’s Office sends out an e-mail to undergraduate and graduate students that confirms a student has completed all of the requirements for their program and confirms they will receive their degree at convocation. If a student receives this e-mail before they receive their confirmation of eligibility to graduate, they must stop working on the day that they receive this e-mail. The Registrar’s Office sends out this e-mail in mid-May, early October, and early February each year. 
- It is recommended that you request your Confirmation of Eligibility to Graduate as soon as you are eligible and don’t delay initiating your request. 

How to apply online

Step 1

Visit IRCC’s website and click on the link to sign-in or create an account.

Step 2

Log-in to your IRCC secure account. If you don’t already have an IRCC secure account, create a GC Key or use the Sign-In Partner option with your Canadian banking credentials to log-in. It doesn’t matter which log-in option you choose; both will allow you to access the IRCC secure system. You will be asked to create recovery and security questions – make sure you write these down somewhere for future reference.

Step 3

Start an application. Scroll down on the main page & select ‘Apply to come to Canada’. Under the ‘I do not have a Personal Reference Code’ section, click on the button for ‘Visitor visa, study and/or work permit’.

Step 4

Answer all the questions accurately in the eligibility tool. Your document checklist and application form (IMM 5710) will be generated at the end of the questionnaire. Consider the following when you are answering these questions: 

  • Select “Work” to answer the first question “What would you like to do in Canada?” 
  • IRCC will ask you a series of questions related to working in Canada. Only answer ‘Yes’ to the question “Have you recently graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution for which your study program was full-time and a minimum of eight months”. You can select ‘No’ for the questions about on-campus work, working off-campus, and working in a Co-Op position. 
  • For the question “Do you have a written job offer?” Please answer ‘No’, even if you do have a job offer or current employment. Having a job or job offer is not one of the eligibility requirements for the PGWP, you should be answering ‘No’ to this question.
  • IRCC will ask you some questions to determine if you need to submit a medical exam with your application:
    • For the question “Have you had a medical exam performed by an IRCC panel physician (doctor) within the last 12 months” answer ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ according to your situation. If you have had a medical exam performed within the last 12 months, you will be required to upload the IME form that you received from the panel physician.
    • For the question “Have you lived in a designated country or territory for more than six months in the last year?” you should select “No” if you have not been outside Canada for more than 6 months in the past year.
    • If they ask whether or not you want to work in a job in which public health must be protected, select ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ according to your situation. If you want to work in education, health care, etc., and you don’t submit a medical exam with your PGWP application, you could receive a work permit with conditions that restrict you from working in these fields. 

Step 5

After you answer all the questions in the eligibility tool you will receive instructions on how to complete the rest of the application process. You will also receive your document checklist, which will include the application form (IMM5710). At this stage you can upload your documents along with the completed application form, pay your fees, and submit your application. We recommend taking a screenshot of the confirmation of submission page after you submit your application.