The International Masters Graduate and PhD Graduate streams of the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) are set to reopen to receive applications next week. Through these streams — which are two of the highest-volume streams under the OINP — eligible candidates may obtain Canadian permanent resident status. The province states that applications will be received through new online application systems, advising potential candidates to check online for further updates on February 21, 2017.
While Ontario has several options that may lead to permanent resident status, the International Masters Graduate and PhD Graduates streams are particularly popular with international graduates who meet the requirements. A job offer and skilled work experience is not required for either of these streams. Both these streams have been closed to new applications since May 9, 2016. Furthermore, the International Masters Graduate stream has been updated so that candidates may apply if they are living outside Ontario, and otherwise meet the eligibility criteria. Previously, International Masters Graduate candidates were required to be living in Canada with legal status at the time of application. PhD Graduate candidates may also apply from outside Ontario; this was already the case.
Ontario is keen to retain its international graduates, recognizing their contribution to the province’s development. A press release accompanying the announcement stated, “With their advanced language skills and global connections, international students are important to the success of Ontario’s economy.” The province is intent on developing its knowledge economy and technology sectors, and easing the pathway to permanent residence for graduates is a key part of this strategy.
At the announcement of the impending opening, Ontario’s Deputy Premier and Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development, Deb Matthews, said, “The OINP allows Ontario to attract individuals who have the right skills and experience for our economic needs. Attracting and retaining skilled newcomers and international students will help to create a prosperous economy based on ideas, innovation and exchange and will enrich the cultural diversity of Ontario.”
The OINP Express Entry-aligned Human Capital Priorities stream is also scheduled to open next week. This stream allows Ontario to nominate desirable individuals who are eligible in the federal Express Entry pool, and whose profiles the province selects. Selected candidates may receive a Notification of Interest (NOI), and may then apply for provincial nomination.
The OINP allows Ontario to select individuals who have the education, skilled work experience, language ability, and other characteristics to help them successfully establish and integrate into Ontario’s labour market and communities, and nominate them for permanent immigration.
|International Masters Graduates||PhD Graduates|
|Must intend to live and work in Ontario||Must intend to live and work in Ontario|
|Must have graduated from an existing Master’s program at an eligible publicly funded university in Ontario
||Must have successfully completed all PhD program requirements at an eligible publicly-funded university in Ontario
|Must submit the application within two years of the date on which the Masters degree was granted||Must submit the application within two years of the date on which the PhD was granted|
|Must have legal status (i.e. study permit, work permit, visitor record) if living in Ontario at the time of the application
||Must have legal status (i.e. study permit, work permit, visitor record) if living in Canada at the time of the application
|Must demonstrate an adequate intermediate proficiency level in English or French of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 or above in all four competencies (speaking, reading, writing, and listening)|
|Must be able to show a minimum level of savings and/or income in order to support themselves and their dependants|
|Must show that they have resided in Ontario for at least 12 cumulative months in the 24 months before submitting an application|
Studying in Ontario
Ontario is home to some of Canada’s top-ranked and best-known educational institutions, many of which are located in the south of the province. In addition to renowned universities including the University of Toronto, the University of Ottawa, McMaster University, Queen’s University, and Waterloo University, the province has a unique network of community colleges that are highly regarded for the quality of their trades and vocational training programs.
Learn more about studying in Ontario.
Ontario welcomes more international students than any other province or territory in Canada, by a large margin. International students are attracted by the quality of its institutions, stable economy, job opportunities, and quality of life.
International students and post-graduate workers in Canada can join the CanadaVisa Study Hub to access a range of tools and resources to assist in studying, working, and settling in Canada permanently.
Learn more about studying in Canada. There is also a range of tools and resources available for prospective students in Canada, including Canada School Search and School Match Canada.
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