Questions regarding graduate student recruitment for fall 2021

MEMO TO: Graduate advisors and graduate student supervisors
FROM: Susan Lewis, Acting Vice-Provost

Dear graduate advisors and supervisors,

I’m writing in my capacity as Chair of the VPAC COVID-19 Advisory Group to provide some guidance regarding graduate student recruitment, in response to questions we’ve received. While there are still many unknowns, I hope you—as graduate advisors and supervisors—find this information helpful as you plan to welcome your international graduate students this fall.

Please continue to recruit international graduate students into your programs, in cases where you would normally do so. Where feasible, some flexibility may be needed in response to current travel and quarantine requirements.

As a reminder, on February 12, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that temporary changes to the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Program put in place earlier in the pandemic are being extended and expanded.

Although education has been deemed essential travel, we know there are challenges with obtaining study permits. Processing times remain long and Visa Application and Biometric centres in many countries are closed or reduced in capacity. Further, we still have no indication of how long the current quarantine requirements will be in place, though we are hopeful the situation will improve in the coming months. As always, please direct international students to UVic's International Student Services for support with their study permit process and travel to Canada.

Please feel free to share this memo with your colleagues.