Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Universities: Immigration law hurts enrolment

English: International Students
English: International Students (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
 BY PAUL MCLEOD OTTAWA BUREAU

OTTAWA — Canadian universities say they are being hamstrung by a law that was intended to clamp down on immigration scammers.
Bill C-35 was first titled the Cracking Down on Crooked Consultants Act. It banned unauthorized people from acting as “immigration consultants” to prey on people looking for a way into Canada.
Though the bill was passed two years ago, it was only in May that universities received the final edict that it also applies to them. That means university staff cannot advise international students on matters like applying for a visa, work permit or permanent residence.
“They can’t seek advice from the trusted advisers on campus who are very accustomed to giving them a basic level of ‘Here’s where you go, here’s what you do, here are the requirements and here are the guidelines,’” said Mount Saint Vincent University president Ramona Lumpkin.
As government funding has frozen, universities have been increasingly leaning on foreign students for enrolment and rev-enue. Last year, over 11,000 international students came to Atlantic Canada to study. More than half of those, about 6,200, came to Nova Scotia.
International enrolment in the region has risen by double digits each of the past five years. But universities say Bill C-35 and a strike among Canada’s diplomats could be major hits to next year’s enrolment and the number of students who choose to settle in Atlantic Canada.
Bill C-35 amended Section 91 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. It put in place penalties of up to $100,000 for advising or offering to advise someone on immigration proceedings unless the adviser is certified.
Uncertified student advisers are banned from communicating with the government on behalf of a foreign student, filling out forms for them, representing them at an immigration proceeding or even providing guidance on a student’s options.
According to Lumpkin, no university employee in the region is certified with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council except for one person at Mount Saint Vincent.
Certification requires 180 hours of course work, a written exam, annual fees of $1,700 plus insurance and 16 course hours per year.
“Most of our universities are smaller liberal arts universities so that’s a pretty significant human resource and financial commitment that our universities would have to make to fulfil the registration requirements,” said Peter Halpin, executive director of the Association of Atlantic Universities.
After Bill C-35 was passed, universities tried to negotiate some leeway. But their proposal for a cheaper, narrower, university-specific certification process was not approved by Ottawa.
A Citizenship and Immigration Canada spokesman defended the new rule as necessary to protect both immigrants and the integrity of the system.
“CIC recognizes that educational institutions and international student advisers have provided advice to international students in good faith,” said Bill Brown.
“That said, these legislative changes apply across the board to all persons subject to Canadian law.”
Halpin said the new law will likely reduce the number of foreign students who choose to stay and live in the region after graduation.
Universities are also watching the standoff between Ottawa and the Professional Association of Foreign Service Officers, which represents Canada’s diplomats working abroad. About 150 visa officers walked off the job across 15 foreign missions Monday.
The growing backlog in visa processing has universities wondering whether international students will be processed in time for the fall semester.
“There’s really grave concerns about the effect this is going to have on enrolments this September,” said Halpin.
“If those students are unable to get their visa application in time to start school in September, they’re lost for good.”

If you are an educational institution in Canada, we can help your international students in immigration matters. Please send us your questions to nexuscanadavisa@gmail.com
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Thursday, July 18, 2013

How Arranged Employment Can Work for You

English: Employment Exchange. Job centre in Ha...
English: Employment Exchange. Job centre in Hamilton, Glasgow (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Canada’s largest immigration program, reopened its doors to applications on May 4th 2013. In an effort to manage application intake and prevent backlogs, the government has instituted a cap of 5,000 applications for this year, extending to April 30th 2014. In addition, the government has limited intake only to those with experience in one of 24 eligible occupations.
Skilled workers who wish to bypass the application cap, occupation list, or both have another option for immigration through the FSWP. This option is known as Arranged Employment. Applications submitted with Arranged Employment are not subject to caps, and may have experience in any skilled occupation.
Arranged Employment is one of the six selection factors in the FSWP. When an applicant has Arranged Employment, he or she is awarded 10 points for this Selection Factor, and up to an additional 5 points in the Adaptability selection factor.
When does an applicant have Arranged Employment?
In general, Arranged Employment means that the applicant has a genuine offer of employment from a Canadian employer for a full-time, paid job in a skilled occupation. The job offer must have an indeterminate length of employment and be conditional upon the applicant becoming a permanent resident.
Prior to May 4, 2013, most applicants were required to have the Canadian employer validate the job offer with Service Canada through an “Arranged Employment Opinion”. However, the new regulations for the FSWP now require the Canadian employers to validate the job offer by obtaining a Labour Market Opinion (LMO) from Service Canada. However, an LMO is not required in certain circumstances.
Who does not require an LMO?
The following two categories of applicants do not require an LMO to benefit from Arranged Employment:
  • Applicants who are currently working in Canada on a temporary work permit in a skilled occupation, where the work permit was originally issued based on a positive LMO.
  • Applicants who are currently working in Canada on a temporary work permit in a skilled occupation, where the work permit was originally issued without an LMO under the provisions of an international agreement (e.g. the North America Free Trade Agreement ) or under the provisions of one of the Canada-Provincial/Territorial Immigration agreements (e.g. the Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement).
In both these circumstance, the following conditions must be met for the applicant to benefit from Arranged Employment:
  • The Canadian employer specified on the applicant’s work permit must extend a non-seasonal full-time job offer to the applicant for the same position specified on the work permit, and the job offer must be for an indeterminate length of employment conditional upon the applicant becoming a permanent resident;
  • The applicant’s work permit must be valid at the time the Federal Skilled Worker application is submitted; and
  • The applicant must have the valid work permit for the same employer in the same position until the Permanent Resident Visa is issued.
Who does require an LMO?
As a general rule, any applicant who has a suitable job offer from a Canadian employer, but who does not have a valid temporary work permit and is not authorized to work in Canada must have the Canadian employer obtain an LMO prior to submitting their FSWP application in order to benefit from Arranged Employment.
In some cases, foreign workers who are currently working in Canada are still required to have their employers obtain an LMO to benefit from Arranged Employment. This includes the following types of applicants:
  • Foreign workers who have a job offer from a Canadian employer that is different from the employer indicated on their work permits;
  • Foreign workers who have work permits that were issued without an LMO due to exemptions other than those noted above, e.g. the Intra-Company Transfer category;
  • Foreign workers who have open work permits (not linked to any specific employer); and
  • Individuals who are authorized to work in Canada without a work permit, such as business visitors.
One interesting aspect of the new Arranged Employment regulations is that an LMO obtained from Service Canada entitles the applicant to a temporary work permit immediately. Thus, the applicant may be able to come to Canada as a temporary foreign worker immediately, while their permanent residence FSWP application is still being processed.
“Holding a Canadian job offer opens up opportunities for immigrants before and after they land in Canada,” said Attorney David Cohen. “Not only will it benefit their application for Permanent Residency, it can allow an applicant to come to Canada within a couple of months and begin working right away.”

Source: http://www.cicnews.com/2013/07/arranged-employment-work-072641.html
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Canada Opening Doors to Record Number of International Students

Happy Canada Day
Happy Canada Day (Photo credit: Anirudh Koul)
2012 was a record-breaking year for the Canadian educationsystem. For the first time in the country’s history, over 100,000 permits were issued to new international students. This is an example of Canada’s growing reputation as a global magnet for students of all disciplines from around the world.
Canada’s popularity amongst international students has seen a sharp rise in recent years. 2012’s figures were a full 60% increase from 2004, and the number of new students has the capacity to increase by 7% every successive year. In total, there are currently around 260,000 international students in Canada today, studying both full- and part-time.
What Contributes to Canada’s Popularity?
The government of Canada has worked hard to attract, in the words of former Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, “the world’s best and brightest young minds”. In the global competition for the world’s future leaders and innovators, Canada’s reasons for success are many:
Good Schools – Canada is home to some of the world’s leading educational institutions at all levels of study. McGill University, located in Montreal, is consistently voted one of the 20 best universities in the world. Students in Canada can study in English, French, or often in both languages thanks to the country’s official policy of bilingualism.
Cost of Living Compared to countries like the US and Britain, the cost of living in Canada is significantly less expensive, easing the financial burden of students during and after studies.
High Acceptance Rate – 81% of study permit applicants receive their Canadian study permits.
Permit Processing Rules – Canada will soon introduce new rules that will restrict the issuance of study permits to only students studying at institutions that have been approved by their province or territory. This will help maintain the integrity of Canada’s work permit program and ensure a smooth study process for students.
Post-Graduation Options – Many graduates from Canadian educational institutions can remain in the country as temporary workers and become permanent residents if they so choose.
After Graduation
After graduating from a Canadian educational institution, students have a number of options before them. Many return to their home countries, where they will use their newly acquired skills to excel in their chosen professions. However, many remain in Canada to live and work for an extended period of time.
“Students who stay in Canada after graduations are a win-win situation,” said Attorney David Cohen. “They are able to begin careers in our thriving economy, while Canada benefits economically from their experience. It is no wonder the country has worked hard to streamline immigration processing for international students graduating from Canadian schools.”
Many students are able to leverage their time in Canada as a stepping stone to permanent residency. Make sure to tune into the next issue of CIC News, where we will explore the different ways in which this is possible.
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Quebec Announces Major Changes to Immigration Programs

English: Québec Province within Canada. Españo...
English: Québec Province within Canada. Español: Provincia de Quebec en Canadá. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
80.1 percent of the people of Quebec speak Fre...
80.1 percent of the people of Quebec speak French as their first language. In total, about 97.4 percent are able to speak French. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Government of Quebec has officially announced changes to language rules for immigration through the Quebec Skilled Worker (QSW) program. This announcement was made in the Gazette Officielle du Quebec/The Quebec Gazette on Wednesday, July 17th 2013.
In addition to modifying language criteria, the government has announced its intent to institute a cap on application intake and to publish a new list of areas of training/fields of study.
Language Rules
Applicants applying to the skilled worker stream of the QSW program can receive a maximum of 22 points for language skills. Up to 16 points are awarded for French proficiency, and up to 6 for English.
French points are assessed on a scale from A1 (beginner) to C2 (advanced/fluent). Previously, points could be claimed for any level of proficiency in listening and speaking. This began with 1 point for A1 level and a maximum of 8 points for a C1 or C2 level for each proficiency.
The points system has been changed so that, moving forward, no points will be awarded until the B2 (advanced intermediate) level. In addition, applicants will now have the opportunity to earn points for reading and writing proficiency. Up to 1 point can be earned in each of these categories.
The charts below illustrates the new points breakdown:
English proficiency has similarly changed. Points for English language skills will not be awarded until the Intermediate level, or levels 5-8 according to government criteria:
It is important to note that applicants would not be disqualified for possessing less than B1 proficiency in French or English. The QSW application is assessed on a points system, and it is possible for an applicant to achieve sufficient points without being awarded points for their language skills.
These language rules will be effective for new applicants beginning August 1st, 2013. The rules will be effective retroactively for submitted files for which preliminary processing has not already begun. What constitutes ‘preliminary processing’ has not been made clear in the government’s announcement.
Proposed Changes
Two additional changes, proposed a week prior, have not yet been made official.
The first will place a cap of 20,000 on application intake for the QSW program. The second will involve publishing a new list of eligible areas of training/fields of study. Currently, applicants to the skilled worker stream of the QSW must have training in one of 110 areas of training/fields of study. This list corresponds to occupations the government has identified as in-demand in the Quebec.
What Applicants Should Know
French language ability has always played a significant role in the QSW program, Quebec’s largest immigration program. English proficiency remains important, however, and maximum points for English language skills have not diminished under this new system.
“These changes reflect the emphasis Quebec places on language proficiency. The government believes that speaking Canada’s official languages is an essential tool for economic and social integration into the province,” said Attorney David Cohen.
Attorney Cohen added that “while language proficiency is indeed important, not all applicants need these skills to qualify for immigration. Others with limited skills may be able to attain a higher level through language study. As always, Canada’s immigration system awards immigrants who are organized and motivated to come here.”
It is unknown when the Quebec Government will officially release the new list of areas of training/field of study but it is safe to say it will be on or before August 1st, 2013. 
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Monday, July 15, 2013

Alberta Work Experience Category

English: Alberta Legislature Building
English: Alberta Legislature Building (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
English: Flag of Alberta Français : Drapeau de...
English: Flag of Alberta Français : Drapeau de l'Alberta Español: Bandera de Alberta Русский: Флаг Альберты (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This image was selected as a picture of the da...
This image was selected as a picture of the day on the Karachay-Balkar Wikipedia for 21st of April 2010. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
English: A view from the south of the Universi...
English: A view from the south of the University Hospital complex on the north campus of the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Applying to the Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) this year may help you become a permanent resident sooner. This is a time-limited opportunity. Apply now!
The Alberta Work Experience Category of the AINP lets eligible foreign workers apply to nominate themselves for permanent residency. With the Alberta Work Experience Category you do not need your employer to apply with you. Before you apply make sure your occupation appears on the Eligible Occupations List. You must have at least two years of Alberta work experience in an occupation on the Eligible Occupations List and meet other program and federal government criteria.

Do you qualify?

  • Is your occupation on the Eligible Occupations List?
  • Do you have at least two years of Alberta experience in an eligible occupation?
  • Are you currently living in Alberta?
  • Do you meet all other required criteria?
  • You are not eligible to apply if your occupation does not appear on the Eligible Occupations List.
If you are working in Alberta or have recent Alberta work experience but your NOC code is not on the Eligible Occupations List, you may qualify to submit an AINP application under one of the AINP’s other streams or categories. Visit the AINP’s Strategic Recruitment Stream or Employer-Driven Stream page to see if you qualify to apply.


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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

New jobs opening in Saskatchwean and Alberta.

In large construction projects, such as this s...
In large construction projects, such as this skyscraper in Melbourne, cranes are essential. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
English: Concrete pool construction using alum...
English: Concrete pool construction using aluminum concrete forms. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
We have  20 spots for construction laborers in Saskatchewan. The pay is 17.50 per hour and they build high end buildings.

We also have  28 spots in Alberta for 28 construction laborers. 

Need to have a minimum of 1-2 years experience in home or building construction. Able to communicate in English.

Job Description:
  • Load, unload material from trucks
  • Move material on the construction site
  • Clean-up work sites
  • Construct scaffolding if required
  • Assist with assembly of concrete forms
  • Maintain and clean tools/equipment
  • Perform other duties as required

Please send us your resume to nexuscanadavisa@gmail.com
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Monday, July 8, 2013

City looking to attract more immigrants

English: Charlottetown, P.E.I. Queen Street in...
English: Charlottetown, P.E.I. Queen Street in the central business district. Español: Calle Queens en el distrito comercial. Türkçe: Charlottetown kent merkezinden bir görünüm. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
SUMMERSIDE – The City of Summerside is looking to bring more immigrants into the community to improve its population numbers through a new website portal.
Councillor Ron Dowling, chairman of the city’s economic development committee, said the city needs to make a stronger effort to find newcomers.
“Given Summerside’s lack of attraction in regards to immigration, the city is launching a multi-pronged approach to ensuring our community’s position in supporting immigration attraction to maximize its potential,” Dowling said.
He said the new web-portal will post immigrant opportunities and will provide a one-window source of information for those wising to come to Summerside.
“Currently, the city has developed the framework for a strategy and the real challenge is to effectively articulate the opportunity and support the potential immigrant and their experience in Summerside,” he said. “Immigration has fueled the province’s population growth from just over 138,000 to over 143,000. P.E.I.’s population growth leads the Atlantic region due in large measure to immigration.”
Dowling said while the Island was a leader, Summerside derived very little benefit from the influx of immigrants.
“Since 1996, the total number of immigrants coming to P.E.I. reached 10,000, according to Statistics Canada,” Dowling said. “Of those immigrants, only 565 initially settled in Summerside, or 5.5 per cent of the total. Over 9,206, or 91 per cent, settled initially in Queens County and, more specifically, Charlottetown.”
Dowling said looking strictly at pure population growth since 1901, Prince County has only seen its population grow by 12 per cent versus Queens County, which has increased more than 108 per cent.   
He said population is a natural resource that provides labour skills for the market and Summerside is losing this asset to other parts of Canada.
“Given our seasonal economy, we can see that trend continuing well in to the future if we do not come up with a unique solution to stem the trend,” Dowling said. “Finally, private sector investment in Summerside is minimal at best and is mainly focused on the retail and service sectors. Over the last 11 years P.E.I. has had the lowest per capita private sector investment in all of Canada from a pure dollar perspective, the second highest unemployment rate in Canada, which traditionally hovers around 11 per cent, and the lowest average weekly earnings in all the provinces of Canada.
“We want that to change and we need everyone’s assistance to make that happen,” the councillor said.
The province and the city came up with the immigration portal with select information targeted specifically at this group. The project addresses three fundamental core strategies: infrastructure and economic development, population growth and retention, immigration.
“General information about Summerside will be included on the portal and will highlight our community and provide an overview of the business environment and outline key areas for potential investment,” Dowling said.
mcarson@journalpioneer.com
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NEW CANADIANS FACE CREDIT CURVE

Deutsch: Toronto: TD Canada Trust Tower
Deutsch: Toronto: TD Canada Trust Tower (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Statistics Canada estimates that immigrants account for more than one-in-five Canadians and projects that by 2055 immigration will account for 90 per cent of the country’s population growth.
But figuring out how things work in a new country can be challenging, from locating new schools and communities to navigating the banking system.
According to a poll from TD Canada Trust, most newcomers said they did not know how to open a bank account (47%), apply for a credit card (58%) or mortgage (87%) or send money to family overseas (72%) in their first three months in Canada.
The biggest surprise New Canadians encountered setting up their finances was the credit rating system (24%) and not having access to credit right away (23%). 
“A major challenges new Canadians face is establishing a credit history so they can buy or rent a home, get a credit card, purchase a car, and even secure a mobile phone plan and insurance,” said Stephen Menon, Associate Vice President of credit cards at TD Canada Trust.
The following tips can help newcomers build their Canadian credit rating:
Apply for a secured credit card
According to the poll, a quarter of new Canadians (23%) said they wish they knew more about how to get approved for a credit card. Menon recommends newcomers visit their local branch to apply for a secured credit card as soon as they arrive.
Pay all of your bills on time and in full
Late bill payments have the potential to negatively affect a credit rating. According to the research, 49% of newcomers pay their bills through online banking and 30% use a mobile app on their smartphone or tablet for banking services.
Check your credit rating before applying for a mortgage
Eighty-seven per cent of newcomers didn’t know how to apply for a mortgage in their first three months in Canada and 38% said they wish they knew more about local mortgage rules. TD recommends homebuyers check their rating at least six months before applying for a mortgage, so they have time to correct it if there are any flaws. 
TD Canada Trust and New Canadians 
Language can be one of the biggest challenges for newcomers: 41% found communicating difficult when they first arrived and 55% said it was important for them to find a bank that offered services in their native language. TD Canada Trust offers telephone banking services in more than 170 languages, including the ability for customers to make an in-branch appointment with a financial advisor who speaks their native language.

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