Post-graduation work permit

You may be eligible to apply for a post-graduation work permit within 90 days of completing your program requirements, allowing you to live and work in Canada.

What is it?

post-graduation work permit (PGWP) is a document that gives you permission to remain in Canada as a worker and work full time for up to three years after you graduate from a Canadian post-secondary institution.

To be eligible for a PGWP, you must have continuously studied full time in Canada and you must have completed a program of study that lasted at least eight months. See full eligibility details.

If you have ever taken a leave of absence or studied part time, we recommend you consult with an International Student Advisor before submitting your application.

Why do I need it?

A PGWP is an excellent way to gain Canadian work exprience which you might need to qualify for permanent residence.

When do I need it?

You must apply for your PGWP within 90 days of receiving your final marks or from receiving written notice of completion of your studies, whichever comes first. If you have questions about the exact date of program completion, please ask your academic advisor.

You can submit many visa and permit applications online. If you are new to the online application process, start with our general tips for UBC students in Canada.

How to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit

Transitioning from a study permit to a post-graduation work permit

Once you officially complete your academic program requirements you need a work permit before you can work on or off-campus.

Students who have applied for a post-graduation work permit when their study permit was still valid can work full-time (on or off-campus) while waiting for their post-graduation work permit application to be processed.

Working while you wait

If Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) receives your application for a PGWP within 90 days of completing the requirements of your UBC degree (see “When do I need it?” section), you may work full-time while you wait for a decision on your PGWP application as long as you meet this criteria, as per the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations ss186(w) and (v).

Traveling after applying for your post-graduation work permit

We recommend that students wishing to travel outside Canada after applying for their PGWP come and see an International Student Advisor before leaving Canada.

Get help

International Student Development

Talk to an advisor

International Student Advisors are Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) or Regulated International Student Immigration Advisors (RISIAs) who can help.

When emailing us, include the following information in the email:

  1. Your student number in the subject line
  2. Your name
  3. Your citizenship(s)
  4. All permit and visa expiration dates (if applicable)
  5. Currently in Canada (YES or NO)
  6. If you request specific assistance, please provide detailed information including applicable documents, such as a rejection letter
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Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)

Helpful IRCC websites

Tips for communicating with the IRCC