Permits for working off-campus – Information Session
International students attending private degree-granting institutions in BC are allowed to apply for permission to work while studying in Canada. As Columbia College offers Associate Degrees, students attending Columbia College are eligible to participate in the Off-Campus Work Permit Program.
The College holds Information Sessions on the on-line system for Work Permit applications on a regular basis. Columbia College students interested in applying for a Work Permit must attend an Information Session at the College. The College will not support an application from a student who has not attended such a session, and this means no Permit will be granted.
To qualify for a Work Permit a student must:
- be registered in an Associate Degree (University Transfer) Program. Students in the Full-time English Program or one of the College's Foundation Programs do not qualify
- possess a valid Study Permit
- have been registered on a full-time* basis at Columbia College in at least 6 of the last 12 months
- have satisfactory academic standing (minimum Cumulative GPA of 2.0 and not on probation in any relevant semester)
- attend an Information Session at the College
* “Full-time” means registered in at least 9 university credits. Only university-level credit courses count - non-credit English courses such as English 098 or English 099 do not count. Thus a student registered in English 099 plus 6 credits will not qualify; a student registered in English 099 plus 9 credits will qualify. Courses taken at the Secondary level (either grade 11 or 12) do not count either - they will be ignored when the decision concerning full-time status is made.
Students who receive a Work Permit are required to be full-time students at the College. Students with Work Permits must attend classes regularly and perform at a satisfactory level academically (including maintaining a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or better). WP holders must also be registered as full-time students at their institution while they hold the WP; students are not allowed a "semester break" while holding a Work Permit.
Students granted an Off-Campus Work Permit are permitted to work a maximum of 20 hours per week while studying, and are allowed to work full time between semesters. Students are allowed to accept employment of any sort - it doe not have to be related to their studies. Work Permits, if granted, are normally issued for the duration of the student's Study Permit, not beyond.
While the Work Permits are officially portable - they do not have to be removed when the holder changes institution - it is a requirement that CIC (and their old institution) be notified when a WP holder changes institutions. This is done through the same CIC website that was used for the original WP application.