Published on: Sep 22, 2019
Students from Senegal and Morocco will be able to access a more efficient process when applying for a permit to study in Canada as part of Canada's Student Direct Stream (SDS). As from September 9, 2019, Senegalese and Moroccan students have been able to submit applications to receive study permits.
The provision of a swift and reliable application process for study permits shows that Canada is fully able to attract the best and most talented students on an international level. As part of an overall Canadian immigration strategy, the effective SDS process started in 2018 when it targeted students from India, China, Vietnam and the Philippines. The average time to process applications was under 3 weeks. The SDS also contributes to the five-year CA$150 million international education strategy, which was recently announced to diversify the range of countries that international students come from. At present, over half of the international student population in Canada comes from just two countries, namely India and China.
Published earlier this month, an OECD report revealed that Canada is one of the most popular places for students to go and study. This is because not only does the country offer high-quality international education but there are also good employment prospects in the students' area of study when they have graduated. Having the kudos of a Canadian educational background and skilled work experience in the country means that international students are in a very good position to succeed when they submit an application for permanent residence via the Express Entry system.
Also, from 2017, Express Entry applicants who are competent in the French language have been able to gain extra ranking points. Therefore, they have far more chance of being successful when transitioning to become permanent residents after their studies and contributing to the development of French-speaking communities outside of Quebec.
Taking the application process to the next level by incorporating fast and effective steps helps potential students from Senegal and Morocco be successful. Also, it promotes the Government’s Francophone Immigration Strategy by encouraging younger French-speaking students to choose Canada as their study destination.
When applying for a Canadian work permit through the SDS program, students must provide evidence of their letter of acceptance from an approved Canadian education institute. They also need to provide a medical certificate, a Guaranteed Investment Certificate for $10,000 and evidence that tuition fees can be paid for the first year. Finally, students also need to show the results of their IELTS/NCLC assessments for linguistic competence.
Those applicants who are successful will receive a Point of Entry introductory letter and a Canada visa for temporary residency. This gives them the chance to spend time in the country. This permission letter is unique to those coming for study and/or work purposes, which aren't covered by other types of visas. The Point of Entry letter provided by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) must be presented when arriving in Canada and shown to customs officials at the border.
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Ahmed Hussen, has said that Canada is a diverse and welcoming country with high-quality educational opportunities, giving students the chance to get a job after graduating. The country is proud to be a destination of choice for international students. By offering the Student Direct Stream to a wider range of potential applicants, Canada is making the most of the cultural, social and economic advantages that international students can bring to the country.
Expanding the SDS is part of the Government’s objective to attract students from a wider range of countries and to reflect diversity. This was flagged as highly important in the new International Education Strategy for 2019-2024, which was recently unveiled.
Looking back at the SDS, in 2018, around 54,000 students became permanent residents in Canada, which was an all-time record. However, according to data from the IRCC, rejections of study permit applications are also on the increase, with 39% of all international applications having been refused in 2019. An IRCC spokesperson has commented on the country’s immigration evaluation, saying that it is consistent in terms of issuing study visas. The spokesperson said that rejections tend to apply to applicants who have not been transparent in their intentions, signaling a red flag to visa officials who want to ensure that those granted study visas are coming to Canada for all the right reasons.