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Canada report shows int’l grads in low-skilled jobs, calls for Post-Graduation Work Permit overhaul


International graduates on Canada’s post-study work scheme earned less than half of what their domestic counterparts earned on average between 2008 and 2014, with the majority in low-skilled jobs, a government report has revealed.

Between 50-60% of eligible students applied for the post-study programme between 2008 and 2014, according to the report, which was published by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (now ICCRC). However, the document found that the majority of graduates on the programme over the six-year period were in low-skilled jobs in the service sector.

A spokesperson for Universities Canada also stressed that universities “are deeply committed to ensuring their students’ and graduates’ success”.

Post-study options for international students have come under scrutiny in the last year as the Express Entry programme, which began in 2015 as a route to permanent residence for international students and other immigrants, has garnered a mixed response.

Earlier this year, the government announced changes to Express Entry that it said will ease the path to citizenship for international students, including increasing the credit given in the application process for time spent in the country.

At the time, John McCallum, minister for immigration, refugees and citizenship, described international students as “the perfect candidates to become Canadian citizens”, adding that “it makes no sense for Canada to punch them in the nose” by making it more difficult for them to stay.