International students may face unique challenges after graduation
International students were invited to an online conference at Mt. A to learn about staying in Canada after graduation, and what it takes to immigrate, with a particular focus on those wishing to remain in New Brunswick. The meeting was held online through Zoom, with a work opportunity agent present.
The conference is one of several opportunities provided by the University which aims to inform students about the policies and initiatives related to immigration, and direct anyone wishing to remain on how to obtain the necessary documents. Many international students are drawn to study in Canada, but many of them end up paying exorbitant tuition and living expenses for their four years of study. They may continue to face unique challenges after graduation.
One concern is a lack of knowledge of the procedures needed to get a work visa, followed by permanent residency and citizenship. As a result, they may be forced to choose between returning home or enrolling in graduate school, which leaves many without the financial support to continue their education. Some people who hunt for work can find themselves working in low-paying labour occupations. Aside from the conference, there are Future New Brunswick (FNB) programs for international students who want to gain Canadian work experience or stay in New Brunswick after graduation.
The Atlantic Immigration Program, an employer recognized by the province, is another program described in the Zoom conference. The services of these programs include experiential learning, workplace vital skills, job search workshops, academic training, academic upgrading, and a career affair center. Individuals with physical limitations can receive training and help from the career affairs center. An employment counselor then works with individuals to find opportunities which work for them.
With so many students participating and asking questions, this was an exciting and educational event. For more information about post-graduation employment in NB, visit the Working NB website at www.workingnb.ca, or contact them through email ([email protected]) or phone: (506) 869-6944. Students are encouraged to reach out to the International Centre on campus.