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More on work while studying

Off campus work

Foreign students who meet the requirements for off-campus employment are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during the regular academic year and full-time during certain breaks like the winter, summer, and spring breaks.


Eligibility for working off campus:


An overseas student must: in order to be qualified to work off campus while pursuing his or her studies.


  • be enrolled full-time at a certified learning institution (see our dedicated page for a detailed Designated Learning Institution (DLI) List); possess a valid study permit;
  • have begun their studies and are still achieving excellent grades, as judged by their university;
  • possess a Social Insurance Number, be enrolled in an academic, vocational, or professional training programme that lasts at least six months and leads to a degree, diploma, or certificate (SIN)


An overseas student must discontinue working off campus if their circumstances change and they are no longer eligible under any of the aforementioned conditions.


A student who is no longer enrolled in classes full-time might occasionally be eligible to keep working off campus if they:


was registered as a full-time student from the start of the programme in Canada, but is now enrolled in part-time classes as the program's final semester approaches and a full-time course load is no longer necessary to graduate.

 ineligibility  to work off-campus:


  • Students attending general interest courses or programmes; Students participating in English as a Second Language (ESL) or French as a Second Language (FSL) programmes; and Visiting or exchange students at a certified educational institution


In determining whether a student is enrolled full-time, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) takes into account the hours and credits necessary to finish a degree, diploma, or certificate as established by the DLI.


On campus work

If an overseas student passes certain requirements, they may be permitted to work on the campus where they are registered.


Eligibility for working on campus


An overseas student who wants to work on campus without a work visa must:


  • own a Social Insurance Number ; 
  • be in possession of a valid study permit;
  • be enrolled full-time at a post-secondary institution from one of the following list of institutions: a public post-secondary institution, such as a university, college, or CEGEP in Quebec; 
  • a private college-level institution in Quebec that complies with public school regulations and receives at least 50% of its funding from the government; 
  •  a private institution in Canada that is permitted to award degrees under provincial law.


Working for a company based on the grounds of the educational institution where a student is enrolled is considered on-campus labour.


The school, a staff member, a student organisation, a private business (located inside the campus), a private contractor that works for the school, and being self-employed on campus are all examples of on-campus employers.


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