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  • 16 SEP 2023

    Reports recommend that governments reassess funding requirements for international students

    Two reports have separately recommended that the governments of Canada and the UK make changes to the funding requirements they place on international students.

    In Canada, a survey by the Daily Bread food bank found that international students using its Toronto-based service had average monthly living expenses of CAD 1,517. This is almost double the CAD 833 that the country's government requires as proof of ability to meet the cost of living. Consequently, the organisation recommends that this minimum requirement is updated, having been unchanged since at least 2015.

    In the UK, a Higher Education Policy Institute report also recommends adjustments to government guidelines. In addition to the belief of university staff that current funding requirements are outdated, it identifies the practice of students taking out loans to provide evidence of their ability to meet them as a widespread problem. To address this, it calls for efforts to "eradicate companies which allow overseas applicants to misrepresent their available funds".

    For advice on this subject, read our guides to study costs in Canada and the UK.

  • 05 SEP 2023

    Canada extends the validity of distance learning for postgraduate work permits

    Courses from institutions in Canada that have been completed via distance learning since March 2020 will remain valid for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) until the end of 2023, the country's government has announced. For students whose course began before September 2022, all time spent studying remotely from outside Canada can contribute towards a PGWP application. For those who began studying after that date, it will only be valid if more than half of their course was completed in Canada. The rules around distance learning and PGWPs were relaxed in light of the Covid pandemic, and were due to be tightened at the end of August, but this has now been postponed.

  • 24 AUG 2023

    Canadian Prime Minister defends international students over housing problems

    Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has signalled his support for international students in response to suggestions that they bear responsibility for an affordable housing shortage in the country. Speaking to reporters after a three-day meeting of his cabinet, the premier said that "we have to be very careful" before blaming any individual group, and that current housing issues have in fact "been brewing and developing over the past number of decades".

  • 17 AUG 2023

    Demand at university food banks in Alberta rises

    Requests for support at university-based food banks in the Canadian province of Alberta has grown strongly in 2023, with international students comprising a majority of service users. At the University of Alberta's Campus Food Bank, around 1,000 students are being served each month, a number that has risen from around 300 at the start of 2022. Of these students, approximately 70 per cent are international. Elsewhere, at the University of Calgary Students' Union food bank where more than 75 per cent of users are international students 526 food hampers were provided in the last academic year, an increase from 227 in the year before.

  • 01 JUL 2023

    Work permit holders in Canada can now study for longer

    Under a new policy, people who were issued a work permit in Canada on or before June 7 can study in the country until its expiry (or June 2026, if it is due to expire later). Previously, international workers were only able to study in Canada for six months, requiring a separate permit if they wished to extend their education. In addition to permit holders, the new policy also applies to those who were given authorisation to work while their permit extension application is processed.

  • 14 JUN 2023

    Canada offers support to international students affected by wildfires

    The government of Canada has made a range of moves to help international students who have been directly affected by wildfires that are ongoing in large parts of North America. Those whose visas expire by September 30 will be able to apply to extend them free of charge, while those whose identity documents have been damaged or lost can obtain free replacements. The package of support has also been extended to temporary international residents and workers.


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