As a foreign student, you may work in Canada without a work permit if:
If you are eligible for on campus employment, an officer at the port of entry to Canada should write the following on your study permit: "May accept employment on the campus of the institution at which the holder is registered in full-time studies.”
If you are doing graduate level work as a research or teaching assistant, you may work without a work permit in accordance with the terms for working on campus. You may also work at an off campus facility without a work permit under the following circumstances:
If you are a foreign healthcare student (medical, nursing, physiotherapy, etc.) not enrolled in a university or other educational establishment in Canada, you may do a clinical clerkship or medical elective at a Canadian medical teaching institution. You do not require a work permit or a study permit if the main purpose of the work is to acquire training. A normal training practicum should not exceed four months.
All healthcare students wishing to study or work temporarily in Canada must undergo a Medical examination.
Foreign students in residency, extern or fellowship positions in Canadian clinical settings must apply for a work permit.
If you do not need a work permit, follow the steps below to obtain the medical examination form and instructions. Do not use the work permit application kit and document checklist as these are not designed for you and may delay processing.
Determine whether you need a temporary resident (visitor) visa: Countries and territories whose citizens require a temporary resident visa to enter Canada
Once you have submitted your complete application, we will send you a medical examination form so that you can book your medical examination with a Panel Physician. Processing times are the same as for work permit applications where medical examinations are required.
For some Canadian academic programs, work experience is part of the curriculum. Foreign students enrolled in a school in Canada who wish to participate in a co-op or internship program need both a study permit and a work permit.
The process below only applies if the work term is a requirement of a Canadian school. If you wish to do a work term, internship or on-the-job training in Canada, without being enrolled in a Canadian educational institution, you will need to apply for a work permit (and not a study permit). The requirements and instructions are listed in our Working in Canada section.
If you are enrolled in an educational institution outside Canada that has a formal exchange agreement with a Canadian educational institution to provide Canadian citizens with reciprocal opportunities to work abroad, then you may be exempt from the requirement to obtain a labour market opinion. Include a copy of the agreement in your work permit application.
To be eligible for a work permit under a co-op or internship program, the following conditions must be met:
If you meet the conditions stated above, do not make a separate application for a work permit and do not pay an additional fee for a work permit. Follow the standard procedure to apply for a study permit, with one extra step:
If you study in Canada and want to work off campus, you must apply for a work permit. This can only be done from within Canada. See the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website for information on who is eligible for a work permit and how to apply for one.