Applying as an International Student with a Job Offer
Who can apply as an international student?
In order to apply to Opportunities Ontario as an international student, students must:
- Have completed at least half of their studies in Canada, and have graduated or will soon be graduating from an eligible publicly funded Canadian college or university (students must send proof of graduation with their application).
- Have completed a minimum of a two-year diploma or degree program, while studying on a full-time basis. One-year post-graduate degree programs and certificate programs, which require a previous degree or diploma (which may have been obtained abroad), are also eligible.
- Have a job offer in a managerial, professional or skilled trades occupation (NOC 0, A or B). The job offer does not have to be related to the field of study.
- Have a job offer that is permanent and full-time and meets the entry level wage for the occupation, rather than the prevailing wage required for applicants in the General Category.
- Apply within two years of the date on which they received their degree or diploma, or in the alternative, during the last semester of completing their degree or diploma.
- Have legal status, if the prospective international student nominee is in Canada.
- Have received their employer’s approval letter, Joint Verification form signed by their prospective employer, and Pre-screen Position form.
International students do not need to have any previous work experience. Eligible international students may apply for an approved position from within Canada or from overseas.
International students subsidized through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) grants or home country scholarship with return obligations will not be eligible for Opportunities Ontario unless such obligations have been fulfilled.
Incomplete Employer and Nominee Applications
Effective March 16, 2015, Opportunities Ontario will no longer accept incomplete Employer and Nominee applications, and will return them to applicants.
An application may be deemed incomplete if, for example:
- the application form is illegible or incomplete (all fields must be completed, and questions that are not applicable should be marked “N/A”),
- the required supporting documents are not provided, or
- the translations are not complete, certified or notarized.
In cases where Opportunities Ontario returns incomplete applications to applicants, Opportunities Ontario will also return the enclosed processing fees.
Please note that Opportunities Ontario reception staff are not authorized to review the completeness of applications in person. Accordingly, they will not provide in-person advice on whether applications are complete.
What documents do I need to submit?
Once your prospective employer has submitted the Employer Pre-Screen Application Form and has been approved by Opportunities Ontario, your prospective employer will send you the employer’s approval letter, Joint Verification form signed by your prospective employer, and Pre-screen Position form. You can then visit the Forms and Guides page of this website to complete and download the nominee application form.
You will need to submit the following original documents provided by your employer:
- Employer Pre-Screen Approved Position Form.
- Joint Verification Form
- Job offer which will indicate your prospective occupation title and wage for the full-time, permanent position being offered.
You will also need to submit the following supporting documents, along with your application, to demonstrate that you meet Opportunities Ontario eligibility criteria and to confirm your identity, family situation and work experience (if any):
- A copy of your birth certificate.
- A copy of all the pages of your passport. All prospective nominees should ensure that their passports will be valid for at least two years from the time that they submit their nominee application.
- Copy of each dependant’s passport page which shows his/her photo and personal information.
- A copy of your work permit, study permit, visitor record, temporary resident visa, and/or any other Canadian immigration document or entry stamp you have received. If these documents are inside your copied passport, you do not need to make additional copies.
- If you have graduated, you must provide original transcripts and certified true copies of degree(s) and/or diploma(s) earned from the Canadian institution of your study.
- If you are applying in the last semester of your studies before graduation, you must provide original transcripts which indicate that you will be graduating at the end of the semester. However, you must still provide evidence of having graduated before being eligible for nomination.
- Original transcripts must be sent directly to Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program, in a sealed envelope, from the academic institution which has granted or will be granting the degree.
- A copy of your resumé.
- Proof of membership and/or registration in a regulated occupation if you intend to work in an occupation that requires registration or certification in Ontario.
Is there a deadline for applications?
As a prospective nominee, you have 60 days after the date of issue of the Employer Pre-screen Approved Position Form to submit a completed application to Opportunities Ontario. If the nominee application is not received in connection with a position after 60 days, Opportunities Ontario may reassign the nominee position.
If a prospective nominee cannot submit a completed application within 60 days, either the nominee or the approved employer may, in writing to Opportunities Ontario, request an extension of 30 days, providing reasons for the extension request. Approval of the extension is discretionary and no further extension will be granted.
Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program is committed to timely processing of applications, greater transparency to clients and courteous, helpful customer service.
We process applications on first-come-first-served basis and aim to finalize:
- Complete* employer application packages within 64 business days or 90 calendar days
- Complete* nominee application packages within 64 business days or 90 calendar days
- Complete* reconsideration requests within 85 business days or 120 calendar days
*An application is not deemed complete until all missing or required supplementary information is received by Opportunities Ontario. This date can be the date of application receipt, or the day when the last piece of information required from the client arrives to Opportunities Ontario. The processing clock will begin at this point. The processing clock stops when the final decision is made by the program.
Please note that Opportunities Ontario does not process applications during the months of January and December and that time accumulated during this period is not included in the processing time calculation for applications.
Opportunities Ontario aims to meet our service standards in at least 80% of all applications.
What does my employer need to know?
Employers who want to recruit an international student for a position must indicate this on the pre-screen application form. There are three key differences between prospective nominees in the International Student Category and those in the General Category:
- The job offer for international students must meet the entry level wage for the occupation, rather than the prevailing wage required for other applicants.
- Unlike foreign workers, international students do not require previous work experience.
- The fee charged for international students is lower than the fee charged for foreign workers applying under the General Category.
What is the fee?
Opportunities Ontario will charge a non-refundable nominee application processing fee of $1,500 for all international students.
What happens after I am approved?
A Provincial Nomination Certificate will be issued for all successful nominees. Successful nominees must then apply to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for permanent residence. A successful provincial nomination replaces the selection component under other immigration classes (such as the Federal Skilled Worker Class, and the Family Class). Provincial nominees will receive priority processing from CIC.
For more information, please visit our Nominees: What’s next section of our website.
What happens if I am denied?
Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program gives applicants an opportunity to seek a review of the denial decision of their application. This process is called Reconsideration.
Opportunities Ontario’s reconsideration process is in place to provide applicants recourse to the denial of their case should they feel an error was made by the program. Written request for reconsideration must be made within 15 business days of receiving the denial letter if applicants are in Canada. For applicants outside of Canada, the written request must be received within 30 business days of receiving the denial letter. Full details on filing a reconsideration request will be provided in the notification of denial.
Reconsideration requests are reviewed by an official who was not involved in the original decision and who occupies a higher position than the original decision-maker. The reconsideration decision is final.
Please note that a reconsideration request will consider eligibility at the time of application. A decision will not be reconsidered on the basis of a change in circumstances from the time of application submission. In these instances nominee applicants should submit a new application to the program. Nominee applicants submitting a new application are required to pay the application fee for the new application.