Applying for PGWP (Post Graduate Work Permit) in Canada

If you are going to apply for a PGWP, you should read this article to understand more about the program and how you can apply for this.

Applying for Post Graduate Work Permit

IRCC to accept incomplete study permit and PGWP applications

If you are going to apply for a PGWP,  you should read this article to understand more about the program and how you can apply for this. 

In order to apply you must meet the following requirements:

  • You must have continuously studied in a full-time program of study in Canada, with the exception of your last academic semester.
  • You must apply for a work permit within 90 days of receiving written confirmation from your institution indicating that you have met the requirements for completing your academic program (for example, a transcript or an official letter -see below).
  • Your study permit must be valid at the time of application.
    IMPORTANT! The date of completion of your academic program is NOT the same as the date of convocation (your graduation ceremony). Do NOT wait until convocation to apply, as convocation may occur more than 90 days after you have completed the requirements for your program.

PLEASE NOTE: You can only apply for a PGWP once in your lifetime.
If you plan to complete more than 1 degree/diploma/certificate in Canada, consider carefully when it would be most strategic to take advantage of this one-time opportunity.

Proof of Completion of Program Requirements

IMPORTANT: If you were part-time in your final term of studies only, you must upload a proof of graduation letter (see below) and an official transcript indicating full-time enrolment in all terms prior to your final term. If you have a gap in your studies, or if you were part-time in a semester other than your final term, we recommend that you speak to an Immigration Advisor before applying for your PGWP.

Your degree is officially granted once McGill Senate has met. After Senate has met to confirm your graduation, you can generate a letter directly from Minerva that confirms that you have met all the requirements to graduate (Minerva: Student Menu > Student Records > Letters-Proof of Enrolment)

  • Please note that you can only request this exceptional letter once:
    your final grades have been posted on Minerva OR
  • your final thesis/project has been accepted by your department.

Want to immigrate to Canada?

How to Apply for the Post Graduate Work Permit

You can apply for a post graduation work permit, Online OR At a Port of Entry (Terrestrial/Land Border* or Airport) 

  • Canada/US terrestrial border (Lacolle/Champlain, St. Armand/Phillipsburg, or Stanstead)

Applying At a Port of Entry:

To be eligible to apply at the border, you must be TRV-exempt* even if you were required to have a TRV/Entry Visa to enter Canada, you are TRV-exempt if you are traveling only to the US and back with a valid Study Permit or Work Permit – see IRPA Section 190 (3) (f)).

Please note, however, that not all agents are familiar with this exception and may require you to apply online once you’re in Canada. This is why we recommend that foreign nationals who require a TRV because of their nationality apply only at the US/Canada Land Border – Lacolle/Champlain . All other nationalities that do not require a TRV can apply at any Port of Entry.

Please bring the following documents:

  • Valid Passport (The PGWP can not be granted past the validity of your passport. If your PGWP was granted for a shorted period of time than you were eligible for – because your passport was expiring – you will need to apply for a new work permit and pay the fees again, once you have obtained your new passport. You should include a letter of explanation stating that your PGWP expire prematurely because of the expiry date of your previous passport)
  • Valid Study Permit
  • Letter from Minerva or Service Point confirming that you have completed all the requirements of your program of study
  • Official Transcripts in a sealed envelope showing final grades/results (border officials occasionally request these).
  • $155 + new $100 fee (as of Feb. 21, 2015) = $255 (payable by cash, credit card or Canadian debit)
    Optional documents: Immigration officers occasionally ask students whether they have enough money to pay for their living costs while looking for work. It is recommended to have a copy of your latest bank statement or any other document proving that you have sufficient funds to pay your rent while looking for work (there is no specific amount required by Immigration Canada).

IMPORTANT: Immigration Canada plans to expand their biometrics program. You may be required to provide biometrics when applying for your post-graduate work permit at the port of entry, for more information please talk to our immigration consultant.

Contact our consultant for free support

Applying Online

Determine your eligibility to apply online for the PGWP here.
Once approved for online application apply through your MyCIC account
Assemble your documents according to your personalised MyCIC document checklist, and follow the subsequent steps.
As of February 5, 2016, students may now apply online either from within Canada, or from outside Canada. Please bear in mind that processing times (work permit – new employer) will vary by country
Once you have applied online and are waiting to receive your PGWP, you can begin to work full-time provided that:

  • you hold or held a valid study permit at the time you applied for your PGWP, and
  • have already applied for your PGWP from within Canada

Please note: We recommend that you remain in Canada while you wait for your Post Graduation Work Permit.

Your Post Graduation Work Permit and Your Temporary Resident Visa

Student applying for a study permit

If your current TRV (Entry Visa) says “Student” and is still valid, you will not need a new TRV if you are changing your status to “Worker”. Your TRV is valid regardless of whether it was issued to you as a student or worker. You can enter Canada with a TRV – “student” with a work permit.

If you apply for your PGWP from outside of Canada, and your TRV or eTA expires you will be automatically issued a new TRV or eTA. You do not need to complete a separate application or pay additional fees. It will be issued by the officer at the same time as the documents you need for your entry to Canada as a worker (see Immigration Canada website).

If you apply for your PGWP from inside of Canada, you will NOT be issued a TRV or an eTA automatically. You must apply separately for your TRV or eTA if they are expired.

Traveling while waiting to receive your PGWP

If you have applied for your post-graduation work permit (and your study permit has expired) and you plan on traveling outside Canada while your application is in process, you can leave Canada and return.

However, in order to return and enter Canada, you must be:

  • have a valid eTA OR
  • have a valid TRV to enter Canada OR
  • be a Citizen of the United States (exempt from both the eTA and TRV).

Once you arrive at the Canadian border, 1 of 3 following scenarios may happen:

  • You may be allowed to return and enter Canada, as a temporary resident, if Immigration Canada has not yet made a decision on your post-graduate work permit application. The officer at the port of entry may ask you to prove that you have enough financial capacity to support yourself in Canada.
  • You may be allowed to return and enter Canada as a worker, if the officer at the port of entry finds out that Immigration Canada has granted your work permit while you were away.
  • You may be asked to apply for a new work permit at the port of entry, if eligible.

Note: It is possible that you will not be able to enter Canada. The final decision is made at the border by the border services officer.

About Canada Admission Hub

Admission Hub is one of the largest International Student Immigration Firm based in Toronto & Vancouver. Currently, it operates in the following markets: Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, Brazil, Mexico, Turkey, Europe, Vietnam, and India. Our parent company CVH Immigration Ltd. Admission Hub is helping and supporting International Students around the world to Study, Work, and Immigrate to Canada. We are proud to partner with over +150 Canadian Institutions. If you want help with your Study Visa application, the first step is to BOOK A CONSULTATION with Admission Hub’s Consultant, share your background and our consultant will reach out to provide you with as much assistance as possible.
Play Video

Related Posts

We have a team of experts who speak over 13 languages

We understand the challenges and needs of international students, and we can communicate with you in your preferred language. We can guide you through every step of the process, from choosing the right college, applying for admission, obtaining a study permit, extending or changing your visa status, to settling in Canada.

Scroll to Top