Ontario Changes Eligibility Requirement for Employer Job Offer: International Student Stream

Ontario has announced that it will allow anyone who completed a one-year college program and earned an Ontario College Graduate Certificate to register for the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) Employer Job Offer: International Student Stream. Previously, the requirement was that a candidate must have completed a one-year academic program that required at least an undergraduate degree for admission to that academic program. That undergraduate degree is no longer required, so long as the candidate received an Ontario College Graduate Certificate.

For many foreign students with post grad work permits running out soon, this may seem like good news.  However, it may only be a source of false hope. The Ontario government has not drawn a significant number of candidates in the Employer Job Offer: International Student Stream in recent years. In 2023, only 2,963 invitations to apply were issued for this stream, compared to 5,734 for the Masters Graduate Stream. It is important to consider that the purpose of this immigration stream is to address labour shortages in Ontario, and therefore a candidate must have a job offer from an employer in Ontario. The OINP have recently targeted skilled trades, tech, and health care occupations. Thus, this change may only generate a pathway to permanent residence for a few.

We expect that the Ontario government will continue to use this stream to address labour shortages, which will likely benefit those who work in in-demand skilled trades, tech, and health care, and will leave many others hanging, unless there are more general draws in 2024.

Foreign students need to be proactive and continue to consider all available pathways to permanent residence. Our Canadian immigration legal professionals can provide a consultation.  Reach us by phone (416 368 1111) or via email: caruso@cilf.ca; fagan@cilf.ca; bonisteel@cilf.ca; ali@cilf.ca; mukherjee@cilf.ca; garciafialdini@cilf.ca.