How will Canada’s Recent Federal Elections Affect Study Abroad Students?

How will Canada’s Recent Federal Elections Affect Study Abroad Students?

 

 

Canadians hit the polls after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called  for a dissolution of parliament for a snap election. The request was made in the hope of gaining a majority government after winning only a minority in the last 2019 vote. 

Although the next scheduled election was not until 2023, Trudeau was hoping to capitalize on positive attitudes toward his government’s handling of the pandemic following the country’s high vaccination rates and secure a majority government. However Trudeau and his Liberal Party failed again to secure a majority government.

The Liberals will remain in power, and their immigration policies will continue to be implemented by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and other federal departments. The process of the new government establishing itself will take us into the winter holidays which means it likely won’t be until January that the new cabinet finds its footing and begins to put its stamp on immigration policy. As the Liberals have won again, we can expect similar immigration policies as those they have pursued since 2015. The Conservatives also expressed strong support for immigration and oversaw higher immigration levels and the launch of Express Entry when they were last in power. 

The Constitution outlines immigration as an area of shared federal-provincial jurisdiction, with the federal government having the final say. While provinces and territories across Canada are very active in recruiting and settling newcomers, it’s the federal government  that has  control over the nation’s immigration policies. IRCC determines national immigration levels as well as allocations for each province, processing times, and is the largest funder by far of the settlement and integration services offered across the country.

It’s important to note that the Liberals are the current governing party and Marco Mendicino is the federal Immigration Minister. As the Liberals have won a minority, it’s very likely that Mendicino will remain the immigration minister, and priorities contained in his existing mandate letters will be rolled over into the new mandate.

Following the appointment of the Immigration Minister and mandate letter for IRCC, the next big immigration policy event will be the tabling of the 2022-2024 Immigration Levels Plan. It outlines the number of immigrants that IRCC will seek to welcome each year and which categories it will seek to welcome newcomers under, and the allocation of newcomers it’s providing to each province and territory. Following this past September’s election, we should expect the new levels plan by March 2022, however, the announcement itself should simply be a continuation of ongoing efforts to welcome over 400,000 new immigrants to Canada each year. 

Gradually over 2022, we should then see the new cabinet hit its stride and introduce new immigration policies and programs. Regardless of the outcome of September 20, we should expect IRCC and the provinces and territories to continue to invite new immigrants.  This new Liberal cabinet will shape Canada’s immigration system for potentially the next four years. If past years are an indicator, then Canada will be home to many new immigrants and study abroad students for years to come.

 

Fulfil your dreams of studying in Canada and the US with Aplicar!

Aplicar connects students and recruitment partners to the best educational opportunities across Canada. It’s a one-stop solution to ease students’ journey towards studying in Canada

The Aplicar Advantage 

  • Save hours of research and apply to the most suitable programs and schools in Canada
  • Apply to the school of your dreams in just 5 minutes
  • Apply to multiple schools/colleges with a single profile
  • Excellent acceptance rate
  • Streamline and simplify search, application, admission, study visa, and post landing services through our flexible service model



 

Canada: Processing Times For Study Permit’s Post-Pandemic 

Canada: Processing Times For Study Permit’s Post-Pandemic 

 

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Canada is quickly recovering the study permit processing times that got largely delay due to Covid. For the last year and a half, international students have had a more difficult  time processing their study applications due to closed biometric and passport offices. Presently, the processing times for student permits seem to be dropping with lesser processing delays. Though different provinces have different timelines for opening up, the rate of study permit processing has definitely sped up.

A study permit is a document issued to foreign students who want to study at any Designated Learning Institutions (DLI) in Canada and it is imperative for a student to be allowed to enter the country.

According to estimates, Canada was expecting to welcome around 300,000 international students by September 2021. The government of Canada has processed 128,000 study permit applications during the current year and another 140,000 study permits are being processed. The government has clearly shown an interest in having an increasing number of international students come to Canada. They are working to prepare airport and other staff to deal with the hundreds of thousands of students due to arrive in Canada to study.

The majority of Visa Application Centres have opened up and the rest are also in the process of opening up. This would help smooth the processing of applications even further. Though the processing time for study permits varies, at present it’s estimated to be shorter than during pre-pandemic times. The IRCC has said that their current average time for processing a complete study permit application is 55 days. 

Students who were pursuing short term programs of less than six months duration can also now choose to take the study permit application route for Canada. Even students who have not been vaccinated have been allowed to travel to Canada provided they comply with existing quarantine protocols. After they complete their mandatory isolation period, they will also receive the COVID-19 vaccine free of cost.

It’s  worth noting that the processing times have jumped for 2019 and 2020, as they were greatly disrupted due to COVID-19. However, current times are reverting back to pre-pandemic levels.  In general, processing times for applications are dependent on a variety of factors. It could depend on the type of application submitted, whether the application is complete in all respects, the expected time for processing the application, the ease of verification of information and the time taken by the applicant to respond to requests or concerns.

To further ensure the smooth processing of applications, make sure the applications are complete in all respects before you submit them. Even complete applications need to go through the process of follow-up with students, securing the documentation and reviewing it before delivering the decision. An incomplete application only adds more time to the process. First and foremost, you need to have your acceptance letter from a designated learning institution (DLI) ready before you apply for a study permit. The time required for each application is also dependent on the nationality of students. 

On an average students from 80 different countries had average processing times of under 50 days. On the other hand, even though Indian, South Korean and Mexican students make up roughly 50% of all study permit applications, their decision waiting times were roughly 20 days in 2019. During the pandemic in 2020, this time saw an average increase to about a hundred days. That was in part due to inability to secure necessary documentation and biometrics. By 2021, these times have gradually been returning to the pre-pandemic averages. 

Depending on your nationality, you might need to get biometrics done for your study Visa. Not all countries are on the list of nations whose citizens are required to get these biometrics. It is important to start the application process sooner if biometrics are required. Some candidates may also be required to show up for an in-person interview, varying from case to case. 

The Government‘s dedicated efforts to get students back on campus have been instrumental in lowering study permit processing times. At Aplicar, we help students lower their study permit processing times by updating them regarding the necessary documents, informing them about current processing times and informing them of any missing or additional documents required. Stay on top of your application and get the latest from us!

Fulfil your dreams of studying in Canada and the US with Aplicar!

Aplicar connects students and recruitment partners to the best educational opportunities across Canada. It’s a one-stop solution to ease students’ journey towards studying in Canada

The Aplicar Advantage 

  • Save hours of research and apply to the most suitable programs and schools in Canada
  • Apply to the school of your dreams in just 5 minutes
  • Apply to multiple schools/colleges with a single profile
  • Excellent acceptance rate
  • Streamline and simplify search, application, admission, study visa, and post landing services through our flexible service model

Returning To School in Post-Pandemic Canada

Returning to School in Post-Pandemic Canada

 

With an increase in the number of vaccinations and a drop in the number of COVID-19 infections, many universities and colleges are opening back up for students. While some of them are following a hybrid model, many have resumed the traditional way of holding classes, and others offer students an option for choosing whether to attend physical or online classes. Each college/university has different requirements from its students. 

Canada has decided to let international students return for the 2021/2022 school year. The loss of tuition and fees incurred by institutions have been one of the reasons, along with the compassionate stance that the government has taken. While the number of cases of COVID-19 has been going up steadily and much of the teaching is online, allowing international students to return has been a big relief to the institutions. 

This summer, Canadian institutions showed a drop of 22% in government issued study permits for international students. This had risen more than 50% from 2016 to 2019 and the drop has been a cause of concern for schools. They have been pushing the government to bolster their institutional budgets which have been impacted due to the loss of international tuition fees. Tuition fees makes up the second largest income stream for Canadian institutions closely following taxpayer funding. 15% of the total enrolment at these schools are international students, or around approximately roughly 600,000 students.


Institutions are now allowed to have overseas students back following a 14 day quarantine plan. With around 2000 new coronavirus infections being added daily, it was not an easy decision for the government to reach. However, the government’s stance on helping those impacted significantly by COVID-19 related travel restrictions has been welcomed by students. This has cleared the way for all international students to be able to return to their school to pursue their education. 

Most Canadian universities are requiring that students be vaccinated with government approved COVID-19 vaccines to be allowed to attend in-person classes on campus. Those who have not received their vaccinations would have to agree to rapid testing. Those universities that do not mandate vaccines are encouraging students to do so. As most universities are setting their own regulations when it comes to vaccination requirements, students are urged to check with their respective institution before they set out for Canada.

Some leading universities and colleges require that students prove that they got their first dose of the vaccine by early or mid-September and their second dose by mid-October to be allowed to attend in person classes. As institutions and students are interested in returning to face-to-face instruction in their programs, keeping case numbers on the campus low is a main priority.  A majority of colleges require indoor masking.

Of all the students travelling to Canada to study, not all will have received both government approved vaccinations. Those who have completed the first dose will be allowed to move into residence in some universities in some provinces such as Ontario. These schools are also making an effort to help students get fully vaccinated as soon as possible. Students who are not fully vaccinated must also self isolate for 14 days.

Some universities have also adopted the government’s new vaccine passport system called the restrictions exemption programme. Under this program, all members of the campus community will be asked for proof of vaccination. Those who do not submit proof of vaccination will have to undergo regular rapid testing.

As the number of cases rise in Alberta, a number of Alberta universities have closed campuses or have announced vaccine mandates. Among the universities to announce vaccine mandates are the University of Lethbridge, MacEwan University, Medicine Hat College,  Mount Royal University, NAIT, SAIT and NorQuest College.

As the COVID-19 situation evolves, many institutions may keep adjusting and changing their policies. With Aplicar, you’ll get the latest news and coverage of everything that can impact you and your business. This is the Aplicar Advantage.

Fulfil your dreams of studying in Canada with Aplicar!

Aplicar connects students and recruitment partners to the best educational opportunities across Canada. It’s a one-stop solution to ease students’ journey towards studying in Canada

The Aplicar Advantage 

  • Save hours of research and apply to the most suitable programs and schools in Canada
  • Apply to the school of your dreams in just 5 minutes
  • Apply to multiple schools/colleges with a single profile
  • Excellent acceptance rate
  • Streamline and simplify search, application, admission, study visa, and post landing services through our flexible service model