Each year, more and more students are drawn from their home countries to Canada for their university education. And each year, more of them are hoping to stay in their adopted country after they graduate, Student Immigration revealed a recent survey by the Canadian Bureau of International Education (CBIE).
Sixty percent of international students surveyed harboured the desire to become a permanent resident in Canada after they graduate.
This figure has risen from 51 percent in a similar survey conducted in 2015 with a smaller sample.
The survey asked 14,000 international students from all over the world studying in 46 of Canada’s higher education institutes across the country.
“The number tells me that the pathway to permanent residency is still an important consideration for international students,” CBIE Director of Board, Member and Stakeholder Relations Leah Nord told Student Immigration.
But is enough being done to keep the students in the country once their studies come to an end?
According to Nord, possibly not. She claimed that while students may intend to stay, Canada needs to do more to ensure they can come and receive the guidance they need to bring their plans to fruition.
Manager of the International Education Centre at Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU) Amy Braye told Student Immigration that while she is “positive in general” about international students’ likelihood of remaining in Canada after graduation, she is feeling “a little bit less optimistic” about how easy it is to actually make it happen.
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“There are employment opportunities here,” she admitted, but it can be tough for international students to access those opportunities and “break in” to their industries in Canada.
Nord and Braye agree that increased interest in staying in Canada after graduation is likely to reflect the numerous immigration programmes and incentives now in place.
“I think there’s a real, genuine interest across the board from the students, from the practitioners, from institutions, from government and even the wider communities,” Nord confirmed.
The CBIE will release a full report of the findings in November 2018.