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Working in Canada

If you’re an international student, you may be able to work for Canadian companies while you complete your degree at UVic. The information below is intended as guidance, but always refer to the following websites for the most current information:

Work permit
and SIN

Work permit

Work permit

As an international student, you must have a Canadian work permit before you can accept a job in Canada. 

Can UVic staff help you with your work permit application?

Can UVic staff help you with your work permit application?

According to the Government of Canada's Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, only authorized representatives are legally permitted to provide immigration advice to international students. This means that University of Victoria staff are not permitted to help you with your application. Please see UVic's message on this topic.

Social insurance number (SIN)

Social insurance number (SIN)

You must have a social insurance number (SIN) to work in Canada. You must apply in person for your SIN at a Service Canada office.

When you’re hired at a new job, your employer must ask to see your SIN card. You must show your SIN card, or proof that you have applied for the card, within three days of your start date of employment.

Be very careful about who else you give this number to. You should never provide personal information like your SIN or your birth date to anyone, except for payroll and employee records. You should not include this information on your résumé, cover letter or any other documents you submit to your employer.

SIN for on-campus work

If you’re eligible to work on-campus only, you must apply for a SIN once you have a job offer on campus. To get your SIN, you’ll need to provide an official employment contract signed by you and your supervisor.

SIN for off-campus work

If you’re eligible to work off-campus, you must apply for a SIN once you have your off-campus work permit. You will need to provide your off-campus work permit when you apply for your SIN.

Volunteer
work

In some cases, you may be eligible to do volunteer work. However, not all types of volunteer work are open to international students. You should carefully read the volunteer work section of the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) website before you start any volunteer work.

Find work
in Canada

International
career educator

Bruce Moghtader, Career educator – international programs

Bruce MoghtaderBruce’s role is to support international students and alumni in exploring and developing their careers.

Bruce delivers various workshops for international students in McPherson Library, focusing on intercultural and interpersonal development to foster students' growth as professionals in diverse cultural settings like Canada. His workshops also explain employers’ expectations and best practices in the Canadian workplace. Bruce also helps international students one-on-one and can answer questions about career planning and exploration, résumé and cover letter writing and interview skills (by drop in or appointment).

Other
resources

Co-op and Career resources

Co-op and Career resources

If you are a full-time international student and legally entitled to work on-campus or off-campus (or you’ll be looking for work in Canada after you finish your degree), Co-op and Career can provide you with the following services:

  • online career information and resources
  • individual coaching from career educators—drop in or make a longer appointment at your Co-op and Career office
  • online job postings for full-time, part-time and casual work on our online job board
  • computers you can use to research careers or search for a job
  • career resource library
  • job fairs, career workshops and other Co-op and Career events
  • Mentors Online – career advice and information from people working in a variety of jobs (available through the UVic Online Community)

If you’re a part-time student or you’re studying in a short-term program like an English Language Program, you are not permitted to work in Canada. However, Co-op and Career can provide you with:

  • online career information and resources
  • computers you can use to research careers
  • career resource library
  • career fairs, information sessions, "What can you do with your degree?" panels and other Co-op and Career events
  • Mentors Online – career advice and information from people working in a variety of jobs (available through the UVic Online Community)

UVic International Student Services

UVic International Student Services

International Student Services (ISS) offers a variety of programs to support international students at UVic, as well as a list of frequently asked questions about working in Canada.

Financial assistance

Financial assistance

Please see our funding options page.

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