Student Permits

Approval process: study in Canada

Upper Canada Immigration works with students and their families.
Students can work with us to obtain study permits and TRVs to travel to Canada to begin, or continue, their study programs. Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash
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tudents planning to start school in Canada anytime can now breathe a sigh of relief. Immigration, Refugees and Citizen Canada (IRCC) has reverted to its usual procedures in issuing study permits by issuing an approval letter and a temporary resident visa (student) for travelling to Canada.  Students, upon arrival at a port of entry are  subject to an examination by the CBSA, and can be refused entry, if it is found that information is questionable, or not bona fide. After examining a student and once  the officer is satisfied,  a secure document is issued, bearing the issue and expiry dates.

To resume their programs and restore revenue generation mechanisms, educational institutions have developed on-line studies  as part of their offering to students, both local and abroad. Recognizing the lengthy processing periods for study permit applications, students must begin their groundwork on obtaining key documents and evidence for their applications in their respective countries, months ahead of their  semester start dates. And more importantly, students must contact us as soon as they make a decision that they want to come to Canada to study. We will provide advice, insight and advice on the process.

The Student Direct Stream

This pathway to obtaining a study permit is available to certain students  in certain countries. Typically it takes 20 days to process to final decision, but may take  longer, depending on circumstances.  To be eligible to apply through this stream, the following conditions must be present:

1. You must be a legal resident living in one of the following countries:

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Brazil
  • China
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • India
  • Morocco
  • Pakistan
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Senegal
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Vietnam

2. As well, you must:

  • have an LOA (Letter of Acceptance) from a post-secondary designated learning institution;
  • live outside of Canada at the time of applying;
  • show evidence of having paid tuition fees for the first year of study;
  • have a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of CAN$10,000 in the student’s name;
  • take an upfront  medical examination (if you need one);
  • obtain a police certificate before you apply (if you need one);
  • have your most recent secondary or post-secondary school transcript(s);
  • have a language test (IELTS or CELPIP) result that shows either;
  • an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) academic or general training score of 6.0 or higher in each skill (reading, writing, speaking and listening), or CELPIP level 7 in each skill;
  • obtain a Test d’évaluation de français (TEF)  score that is equal to a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) score of at least 7 in each skill (reading, writing, speaking and listening).

There are many institutions that provide instruction in French, so depending on where you want to study, we can advise you on which language test you may take.  As well, if you are concerned about how you can obtain a GIC, please contact us so we can provide advice.

Work while you study

As of November 2022, students studying in Canada are allowed to work for more than 20 hours per week. Rules that governed students working while they were enrolled and attending full-time studies  were recently relaxed to allow students to participate in the workforce for as many hours as they wish.

Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)

International students studying in a Canadian institution can look forward to a obtaining a post graduation work permit (PGWP as soon after they complete their studies.  This is an open work permit which allows students to obtain valuable work experience  in their field of study and contributes to their ranking in the immigration system.  The length of a PGWP depends on the length of studies completed by the student.  Well known and acknowledged amongst students, is the clear pathway to permanent residence that the PGWP facilitates, provided that their Canadian work experience qualifies under specific rules of the Express entry management system. Well known and acknowledged amongst students, is the clear pathway to permanent residence that the PGWP facilitates, provided that their Canadian work experience qualifies under specific rules of the Express entry management system.  Students who complete their entire program on-line  through distance education, are not eligible for a PGWP and are not given comprehensive ranking points for “Canadian Education” in the Express Entry management system.

Travel to Canada

Since the Canadian border is once again open for non-essential travel, students can now travel to their Canadian destination to either continue their studies, or start working.  If you are such a student who wishes to take this opportunity to start your studies in Canada, contact us now. See the Help in three steps box on this page. Upper Canada Immigration will help you prepare a successful package of documents. The minimum set of documents you need to have in hand for us to start working on your application includes:

  1. Letter of Acceptance;
  2. Proof of funds for the first year of studies;
  3. Rationale for your choice of program (background or training)
  4. Study plan;
  5. Demonstration of your ties to your country of residence/citizenship;
  6. Evidence of any ties to Canada.

A study permit application goes through a highly-competitive process. Complete applications with a sound rational and bona fide evidence will be successful.  To make such a submission, you will likely need help from us. Allow us to help you take this all-important stem in your life.

Caribbean trip 2023

See you again this year

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uring late winter or early spring, Upper Canada Immigration Consultants often travels to  the Caribbean to meet with people who would like to come to Canada to live, work, study, visit or do business. We haven’t been to the Caribbean since just before the COVID-19 outbreak. Once air travel becomes less chaotic, we hope to see our potential clients in person again. Many of you are contacting us directly in Canada as it is, and Upper Canada Immigration Consultants moved much of our business on-line and through video meetings, much like many other service businesses. Remember that you do not have to meet us personally in order to retain our services to assist you. Use the phone, or WhatsApp, please.

If you’d like to work with us on an application, or find out if a visit or a move to Canada is feasible, then contacting us is simple. During this period when travel is perceived as risky, we can safely and securely connect  with you by WhatsApp. You and also  use  e-mail to contact us.

Client contact

Like most people, we tried to stay safe from COVID-19 – and the seasonal flu virus. We worked from home wherever possible, and avoided travel. Routine things, such as mail and packages took longer to receive, and some services we are used to receiving quickly take longer, occasionally much longer than they did in 2019 and earlier. But we all got through it, and we look forward to visiting the Caribbean again in 2023.

Contact us if you’d like to arrange to see us in Guyana. We are considering a trip to Jamaica and perhaps to Trinidad as well. If one of those places is home to you, and you’d like an appointment to talk with us in person, let us know. If we get enough interest, and it makes sense to fly again, we look forward enjoying the warmth and hospitality of the countries from which so many of our clients aspire to come to Canada.

Canada is accepting nearly 500,000 newcomers in 2023. One of them could be you. Talk with us.

Welcome Ukrainians

Expedited temporary resident pathway for Ukrainians

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mmigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, as of March 17, 2022, launched an emergency measure to assist those fleeing the war in Ukraine. The Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel (CUAET) is a special expedited temporary resident pathway for Ukrainian citizens and their family members to come to Canada where they will be safe for as long as three years. This is not a refugee stream.

Under this emergency measure, Ukrainians and their immediate family members, regardless of those members’ nationality, may come to Canada as temporary residents. At the time of submitting their applications, such individuals are also encouraged to apply for open work permits. IRCC is expected to process such applications within two weeks, ensuring that the integrity of various processes to authenticate documents and verify facts are not compromised. Standard background checks and thorough screening will be conducted on applicants before final decisions are rendered.

Ukrainians outside Canada

The application process for individuals outside Canada involves an online application submission and enrollment in the biometrics registry. Applications can be submitted online from anywhere in the world, and biometrics enrolment can be done at any functioning VAC office outside of Ukraine. Such offices can be found in Austria, Poland, Romania and Moldova. VAC offices in Chisinau, Warsaw, Vienna and Bucharest have already been expanded to facilitate increased demand for services.

To facilitate continuity of services for Ukrainians and biometrics enrollment, IRCC has relocated staff, moved supplies and deployed mobile biometrics collection units to strategic locations in Europe. As well, all railway travel for Ukrainians to get to VAC offices and such strategic points in Europe is free of charge. Several application requirements such as processing fees for TRV applications (visitor or work permits) fees have been waived.

More information and FAQs

There is lots more information on how Ukrainians needing refuge can find it in Canada. Check out our web page with more detailed information and frequently-asked questions.

Read more…

Fraud prevention 2022

The sheer gall of immigration fraud

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arch each year is Fraud Prevention Month in Canada. It’s an annual opportunity to remind those we work with to use caution in their immigration dealings. The Government of Canada has a very useful web page that echoes the regular messages we post on this web site, such as the cautionary message that follows. If somebody, or some supposed ‘program,’ sounds too good, or too easy, or too cheap to be real, then it almost certainly isn’t real. See what this site has to say about so-called ‘guarantees‘ to prospective newcomers to Canada.

Fake IELTS certificates

Sometimes, it is hard to believe the brazen gall of a crooked scheme unless you read it yourself! One of our staff, on an e-mail account not associated with Upper Canada Immigration, received an e-mail solicitation just flat-out offering to sell anyone an IELTS certificate. Here was the e-mail title: High-quality Original IELTS certificate for sale.

You have to be kidding! A mail-order fake IELTS certificate is about as brazen a scam as we’ve yet seen. We have a page on this web site about common types of fraud that criminals worldwide try to perpetrate against people applying to be legitimate immigrants to Canada. As our web page states clearly, consultants like us provide advice to clients on each and every document they will require, and then we check each and every document we submit on behalf of our clients. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) independently verifies each document in every application all over again.

Criminal offense

Uttering a forged document means altering or creating a document in order to commit fraud, without the knowledge of the proper authorizing party, in this case IELTS. Uttering a forged document is a criminal offence in Canada, illegal under Section 368 of the Criminal Code of Canada. The odds of a fake IELTS certificate working for you are zero! The chances of a fake IELTS certificate sinking your application are 100 percent. And you commit a crime in Canada if you try it.

Mail order IELTS certificates are a way to get the stupid, the dishonest and the gullible to part with their hard-earned money in return for nothing but a guarantee of failure.

Read more…

Toronto Star Ad

Our Ontario newspaper display ad

Upper Canada Immigration ad
Our display ad in Canada’s largest-circulation newspaper, the Toronto Star, ran for the first time on Sunday August 16, 2020.
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uring the Canadian COVID-19 lockdown period in 2020, newspapers everywhere found their advertising base drying up. It wasn’t hard to figure out: advertisers were squeezed by their revenue hit during the virus. Newspapers, magazines, radio and TV saw their revenues shrink as retail advertisers cut back on media expenses when their buyers were largely staying home.

Here in the Greater Toronto area in Ontario, Canada’s largest province by both population and economy, our largest newspaper chose to spotlight businesses like ours: small businesses owned and operated by people of colour or persons of indigenous origin by offering selected businesses an opportunity to run a display ad in The Star, for many of them their first print ad in Canada’s largest newspaper.

So, we applied, and were chosen, as one of The Star’s participants. And here is the final product! Click the ad to see a full-size rendering.

Much of our business development activity consists of a virtual outreach using social media. We have our own direct mail list. Folks use it to tell us something about themselves, as a preliminary to asking us if we can help them. And a day after the ad ran, lo and behold, the phone rang. That was nice, and I hope we can help the individuals who started by saying, “I saw your ad in the paper.”

If Upper Canada Immigration has helped you, or you know someone who needs help coming to Canada, click or tap our ad on your computer to get a larger version, then print it and give it to your friend, acquaintance or colleague.

Maybe you are reading this, and thinking you need help with your own citizenship and immigration issue. With COVID-19 cases sharply down in Canada, we may be able to meet in person, and we can certainly do business over the telephone, by WhatsApp, Zoom or Skype. If you use Microsoft Teams, we will meet you there as well.

For individuals

  • Permanent residency: Is immigration a bigger challenge during the COVID-19 time? You bet it is! But it can be done, and we’ve landed folks in Canada to begin a new life during the COVID-19 months;
  • Business class: Did you know that Canada is the only country in the world that has free trade agreements with every large economy on earth? If Canada’s access to the world, sound economy, low tax rates, fair and honest business systems could help you serve clients from Canada, maybe we are a fit to help you come to Canada and make your fortune;
  • Spousal and family sponsorships: Once you are relocated to Canada, how do you get your spouse here? Your children? Your parents and maybe your grandparents? We have done it for clients many times. We know how to do it for you;
  • Caregivers: Families in Canada need caregivers to look after their kids, parents and grandparents, and family members with disabilities. Good families, and proud Canadians often originate from a caregiver who came to Canada to help other Canadians;
  • Temporary work permits: Foreign nationals, students and others without status in Canada often need skilled help and advice in gaining landed immigrant status to stay in Canada and build their lives.

COVID-19 Update

Canada and COVID-19

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anadian borders have now re-opened to most travelers who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada. Recent progress in vaccination rates and easing of nation-wide lockdown measures have prompted Canada to allow fully-vaccinated travelers to enter without having to show an individualized recently-obtained Covid-19 test report. However, CBSA officers can still randomly select incoming travelers to take a Covid-19 test at the port of entry. Here is what you need to know when travelling to Canada:

  • Children under the age of 12 years who have not been vaccinated, or who have been partially vaccinated, can accompany their parents into Canada. They, like their parents will not be subject to quarantine measures, and can immediately integrate into school or other activities in the community;
  • For partially vaccinated or unvaccinated dependents, or youth travelling independently between the ages of 12 and 17 years, a 14-day quarantine period applies, as well as pre-testing and post-8th day testing. This procedure applies also to youth of that age group, whether they are accompanying fully-vaccinated or partially-vaccinated adults;
  • For dependents over the age of 18 years who are unvaccinated because of physical or mental limitations, all testing and quarantine policies must be observed;
  • COVID-19 policies of the Canadian government may differ from those of provinces and territories. Travelers must abide by the policies that are the stricter of the two;
  • All travelers must use ArriveCan before entering Canada. This app is downloadable on to mobile devices and is accessible on the web. It is simple to use. Mandatory information must be submitted before entering Canada. Depending on the content of submitted information, ArriveCan will provide notifications and messages to travelers and recent arrivals;
  • Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada is now accepting, and processing, most applications for temporary resident and permanent resident visas;
  • Spouses and common-law partners and their dependents can be sponsored by their Canadian family members through the normal sponsorship program. Canada is encouraging these sponsorship applications, and have even deployed additional staff to assess submissions in the quickest possible times;
  • Express Entry draws for federal skilled workers and federal skilled trades which had been put on hold since December 2020 will likely resume this spring;
  • Parents and grandparents program will also resume in 2022 with at least 30,000 invitations expected to be issued to sponsors who had submitted their intent to sponsor since October 2020;
  • As a result of the Russia – Ukraine war, Canada has opened up several temporary pathways for Ukrainians to come to Canada under an expedited process.

The real deal

CICC consultants are the genuine article

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mmigration Consultants like me handle issues that change people’s lives. Helping people qualify to come to Canada, and settle here, is a service that is complex, difficult, takes continuous ongoing training on my part, and takes time. That makes it, by definition, expensive. My clients may do this process once in their lives. For most of them, our fees represent an amount of money they don’t hand out daily. We do this work all the time, do it well, and do it correctly.

Andrea Seepersaud’s qualifications

  • Member: College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants (CICC) #R515545;
  • Member: Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants (CAPIC) #R19147;
  • License: Foreign Worker Recruiter and Immigration Services Act, Province of Saskatchewan #00581;
  • Commissioner: Affidavits and Oaths, Province of Ontario.

Sometimes, people ask if dealing with a licensed Canadian Immigration Consultant brings with it any form of success ‘guarantee.’ I answer that occasional question on this web site. Click or touch here. There are only about 4,600 licensed Canadian Immigration Consultants, as of the end of 2021. I am one of them. At Upper Canada Immigration Consultants, we stick to the law, treat our clients fairly, and deliver value for money to serious people.

More resources

Visa Lottery Scam

No such thing as a Canadian Visa Lottery

Immigration lottery scam
The Government of Canada has no ‘Visa Lottery.’ There is no such program that enables an applicant to ‘win’ a chance at immigration to Canada.
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ome time ago, we were receiving inquiries from individuals all over the globe, and particularly from Africa, about something called a new Canadian Visa Lottery Application that purportedly allows applicants a chance to come to Canada on a permanent resident visa.

I have reviewed the posts and links that people have sent me with Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2017/2018 and Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2018/2019. This is a scam.

This Canadian Visa Lottery scam is a deliberate attempt to mislead you. It is a fraudulent attempt by certain websites to mislead you, and obtain your personal data, obviously with questionable intent.

Please beware of any posts and websites that tell you there is a chance to ‘win’ permanent residency in Canada through a lottery-type system. The Government of Canada has no such program or initiative.

There are more than 60 programs of the Government of Canadian to facilitate access to Canada, whether for temporary residency, or permanent residency. Additionally, there are special programs, initiatives and pilots that are administered by Canada’s 13 provincial and territorial governments that will allow you, based on their own set of criteria, to legitimately come to Canada.

These, along with a solid and reputable consulting firm like Upper Canada Immigration Consultants, are the only authorities that can provide you a chance to come to Canada. Do not be misled by something that sounds too good to be true, because it likely is just that.

For more information on how you can come legitimately to Canada as a skilled professional, a skilled trade, a visitor, a student, a sponsored family member, or to overcome an immigration hurdle:

Hong Kong

The Open Work Permit path to Canada

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re you feeling afraid and insecure about your future in Hong Kong? Maybe you are among those looking to explore an immigration pathway to Canada. Upper Canada Immigration Consultants may be able to help you to chart a course to a new life in a safe, democratic and welcoming country. If your wish is to leave Hong Kong’s anxiety and uncertainty behind you and immigrate to Canada, we can assist you. For example, Canadian employers in Winnipeg Manitoba are actively recruiting Hong Kong holders of work permits received under the Hong Kong Special Measures policy. See the Winnipeg flyer. They are looking for employees in these sectors:

  • Technology
  • Manufacturing;
  • Trucking

If you do not hold an open work permit and want to come to Canada to work, please contact us immediately to determine if you are eligible to apply for the three-year permit. This Special Measures Temporary Policy for holders of HKSAR and BNO passports who graduated in the last five years, will end in February 2023.

Upper Canada Immigration Consultants is a corporation registered to practice in Canada. Our staff are trained immigration specialists and regulated consultants. Please click or tap here for more information about us on this web site.

Read more about coming to Canada from Hong Kong SAR

Vanishing population

Competing for the globe’s top people

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ews articles in Canada in the past year have focused on the immigration challenge facing western democracies. Populism and nativism, amplified in volume well beyond the number of their advocates by strident social media and flat-out cyber manipulation by totalitarian nations (who, ironically are among the world’s most xenophobic) make dispassionate and rational discussions of the clear benefits of immigration to a country like Canada more difficult for the necessity of trying to speak clearly and calmly amid the noise of hysteria.

We are all, rightly, most concerned about our own situation, and whether we can succeed. Here is a view of the broader immigration landscape.

In Canada, the nation’s self-proclaimed ‘national newspaper,’ the Toronto-based Globe and Mail, published an excerpt of a book by Globe columnist John Ibbitson. His book, co-authored with Canadian Pollster Darrell Bricker (Ipsos Public Affairs) is called Empty Planet: The Shock of Global Population Decline.

As authors, the two Canadians are walking ground opened up by the late Swedish statistician Hans Rosling (1948 – 2017) in the YouTube video of his lecture on global population growth. It is a superb one-hour production. Click below to see it.

2022 Update: Rosling was right

Nothing Ibbitson and Bricker’s book, or Rosling’s video, have to say is all that startling, fact by immutable fact. It is the assembling of the larger picture, and projecting it over the entire globe, and the complete 21st century, that make all the data so eye-opening. In 2007, the number of people, worldwide, living in cities surpassed the number in rural or remote areas. Cities are indisputably the 21st century’s engines of growth and repositories of people and knowledge.

The Globe’s Ibbitson published a July 2020 update here. Ibbitson lists some countries that stand to lose more than half their population by the end of the century. The BBC News web site has an article about the implications of a shrinking population, and why global population shifts may be encouraging news for prospective newcomers to Canada.

  • Nations that have not pursued forward-thinking immigration programs already see their populations in decline. Examples include Japan, Russia, and countries in eastern Europe;
  • As populations of youth and people in their prime working years decline or stagnate, proportions of seniors in nearly all western nations are rising sharply. Some 90 percent of health care expenses are spent on the old and the chronically ill. This leaves taxpayer-borne expenses such as health care and pensions to be paid by fewer and fewer working age people;
  • China, which discourages inbound immigration, will see its own population level off shortly, and begin a long decline;
  • Urbanization leads to better education for women, with families starting their child-bearing years later, and having fewer children. The birth date falls below the rate of replacement (depending on who calculates it, between 2.2 and 2.7 babies per woman of child-bearing years);
  • The very policies that welcome newcomers run into opposition in older societies, where a graying older generation can’t – or won’t – connect the dots between a healthy level of immigration, and the people they themselves will need to build their homes, manage their communities, and become their doctors, for example.

Most demographic studies put the world’s population peak at between eight and 11 billion, sometime in the middle of this century, then beginning a steady decline. Canada, with its decades of careful, but generous, immigration numbers remains younger than the average nation. Canada has the ability to keep growing without the looming brick wall of worker shortages facing other nations (such as Japan and even the USA).

Canada’s 36 million people will grow to some 50 million by mid-century, roughly the end of the lives of North America’s ‘baby boom’ generation born after World War II, between 1946 and 1966. Come and work with us. Each year, some 350,000 people will move from the land of their birth to start a new life in Canada. Competition for each of those spots is tight, and the requirements mean you need to have a plan, act on it, and not make mistakes. Contact us. We can help.