18 Year Old: Why studying for a one year course in Canada may be a bad idea?


You’re an international student coming to Canada with high hopes and vigour. You’re a little excited and a little scared. You have no idea what the future holds for you but nonetheless, you’re excited as can only be expected when you’re 18 years old.

So the educational consultancy you approached told you to take a one year course, ain’t that a gem? They should have probably told you that you will get an extended stay back for one year, for your one-year course and could stay in Canada then onwards. Amen to that! Glory to Justin Trudeau!

You’re supposed to be studying in Canada for one reason- For the quality of their educational systems. And don’t get me wrong. They are really good. It is beneficial for the Canadian economy too. International students are charged double the tuition fee of their Canadian counterparts.

But deep down we all know, you are harbouring the dreams of settling in Canada. This again is helping the Canadian economy, as there should be an ideal equilibrium of population to sustain an economy, whereas population rates are declining in many of the developed nations.

All said and done, what matters at this point is that you become a permanent resident of Canada. A PR holder, means you’re legally entitled to most of the rights of a Canadian citizen including healthcare, but except for the right to vote. So as per your educational consultancy, you come, study and you conquer the PR, right?

Hold your horse’s bro! It ain’t that simple.

As Voltaire rightly put it about legal systems, “Animals have these advantages over man: They have no theologians to instruct them, their funerals cost them nothing, and no one starts lawsuits over their wills.”

There are certain legal hoops you should jump before you landing on your dream of Canadian PR.

If you’re an 18-year-old, higher secondary student (+1 and +2) having plans to study in Canada, Read on.

First and foremost, make sure that the colleges and program you enrolled are authorized by the Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)as qualifying for a post-graduate work permit (PGWP). This is because, before getting a PR, you need to obtain a post-graduate work permit (PGWP) to work in Canada. The duration of this work permit is determined by not just the term of your degree at the college, but the courses, course credits etc of your respective program. There were cases, where the authorities had given a PGWP lesser than the duration of the program, considering these factors into account.

You can find the complete list of IRCC approved designated learning institutions list and the respective courses offered by them, that qualify for the PGWP here.

Also, you are supposed to apply for the PGWP without missing deadlines. Your colleges may be on the dark on this, so you are supposed to contact the regulatory authority on immigration matters- IRCC, separately and get a clear cut idea on the due date to apply for the PGWP. There are cases where PGWP were denied to students due to a misunderstanding between colleges and IRCC regarding course end dates.

According to Canadian law, post your PGWP, you still are needed to jump some hoops to land a PR, which also includes proving again your English skills via IELTS (General) exam (not Academic). While it is true that many provinces like Nova Scotia, Manitoba etc give a default PR to students who study at their recognized institutions, it is not the case with Ontario. Many students head to Ontario every year for studies, in the hopes of capitalizing on the opportunities offered by the most populous province and bustling trade centre like Toronto.

For Ontario, mostly you will be required to apply under the Express Entry system to get the PR. The Express Entry system is a point-based ranking system, referred to as the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). There are points awarded based on your education, work experience etc. There are more points awarded, if you’re relatively young, for having a university education in Canada, for having recognized Canadian work experience. The catch here is that your education qualifications should be equivalent if not more of a degree as recognized in Canada. Your young age is definitely a plus.

If you’re an 18-year-old student with a diploma and no degree, the chances are that you won’t meet the CRS score to secure yourself a PR in Canada.

There are cases, where students who came to Canada after high school (12th in India), for diploma courses, and who were working on PGWP, were denied an extension on their PGWP and was not then able to land the PR for they were not able to secure the necessary points.

So it is advisable on our opinion, to join for a full degree program in Canadian colleges rather than joining for a one-year diploma. This will be helpful for you in the long run, career-wise. After all, a degree can open many doors, not to mention the knowledge and wisdom imparted.

If you’re already a degree holder, it is highly recommended that you join for a two-year program, to have a PGWP for three (3) years, whereby you could secure the necessary work experience to apply for the PR.

Further, there are students who join for one-year diploma courses, work for a year or so in the PGWP and then again join for another one year course and secure another PGWP and repeat the cycle until they get the PR along with a Canadian degree. This is rather a novel approach, as the students are gaining work experience, and now when they go back to school, they could enroll for courses, that could further add value to the work experience already gained. Many colleges, often offer, degrees for diploma holders, if they take up more course load and often have a partnership with universities to transfer students to the final year degree if they have a good GPA and recommendations.

The case in point is to manage your expectations. Please don’t be under the impression that a ONE YEAR COURSE IS GOOD ENOUGH to make it there in Canada.

The case is different if you’re an engineering graduate with a year of experience, who is joining a one- year program on project management, things are vastly different for you. The purpose of this article was to raise awareness for the students who just came out of high school.

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