New measure to benefit foreign workers looking to improve their skills

2023 June 27

Study authorization extended for work permit holders

Ottawa—Every year, thousands of temporary foreign workers bring their skills to Canada, helping to drive our economy and fill critical labour market gaps.

While they play an important role in Canada’s prosperity, foreign workers sometimes face barriers in the types of study programs in which they can enrol to pursue their dreams and create new opportunities.

Today, the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced a new temporary measure that removes the limit on the length of the study programs that temporary foreign workers can enrol in without a study permit.

Starting immediately, foreign workers will have the opportunity to seek additional training and education that can help them in their careers. This measure will also help foreign workers expand their future job prospects and increase their opportunities to transition to permanent residence. Prior to this change, foreign workers could study while working, but only in programs of 6 months or less. For longer programs, they had to apply for a separate study permit. This has been a barrier for those who wish to improve their education and receive more training, including those needing to upskill or validate their foreign credentials through certain programs.

With this new 3-year temporary measure, foreign workers can study full time or part time while their work permits are valid or until the expiration of the policy, with no restrictions on the length of the program.

This temporary measure applies to those who hold a valid work permit or who have submitted an application to renew their work permit on or before June 7, 2023, and are authorized to work.  If a foreign worker wishes to study longer than the duration of their work permit, they still need to apply for a study permit.