How to work while studying in Canada?

Working part-time while studying can be a great way to ease your finances and also gain some valuable work experience in your field of study. As an international student in Canada, you can work along with your studies, provided you:

Given these, you are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions, and work full-time during scheduled breaks, such as the winter and summer holidays or spring break.

For students, employment can be on-campus and off-campus. On-campus means being a working resource on your college/university campus itself. You can work on-campus without a work permit if you have a valid study permit, or are a full-time student at:

Some options for working on-campus are:


Acquire a Social Insurance Number (SIN)

You will need a Social Insurance Number (SIN) from Service Canada in order to work in Canada or receive benefits and services from government programs. To apply for a SIN for on-campus work, you must have one of the following conditions or remarks printed on your study permit:

If your study permit does not have one of these conditions or remarks, you will need to submit a free request for an amendment to your study permit before you can apply for a SIN.

Explore careers

As a part of the Canadian government initiative, you can find out more career options by navigating through an online tool known as ‘Explore careers’ which will allow you to map suitable job opportunities as per occupation, outlook, wages, locations, education program, skills, knowledge and many other filters.

How to work once you’ve graduated?

To be able to work in Canada once you’ve completed your studies, you’ll need to have a work permit first. One of the most widely accepted is the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PWPP).

PWPP work permits are valid for the same length of time of your initial study program (up to a maximum of three years) and let you work in any occupation, as well as change employers at any time. To be eligible for PWPP, you must have graduated from a Designated Learning Institute (DLI). Since not all programs from DLIs fulfil the eligibility criterion, do check beforehand if your institution falls in the list. Also, remember to apply for the PWPP within 90 days of receiving written confirmation that you’ve completed your academic program.

While you are waiting for a decision on your post-graduation work permit application, make sure that you meet all of the criteria:

If you need any further guidance, feel free to speak with our international education experts over a free counselling session and keep posted about the latest COVID-19 updates to make well-informed decisions.