Post-graduation work permit

If you have completed a certificate or diploma program (at least eight months or longer) at NorQuest College, you can apply for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP).

A PGWP changes your status to a worker, and you can remain in Canada for the same amount of time as your work permit. You do not need a job offer to apply for a PGWP, and you do not have to work in a specific field or province.


Basic PGWP eligibility includes:

  • completion of an academic program (certificate, diploma or degree) that was eight months or longer.
  • uninterrupted full-time enrollment in each academic term. This does not include scheduled breaks and the final term, which can be part-time.
  • on-campus program delivery mode, except during the COVID-19 pandemic.

You are not eligible for the PGWP program if:

  • you are applying based on the completion of a program that is less than eight months long.
  • you took an unauthorized break in your studies, or you studied part-time.
  • your program included more than 50% of online delivery (Note: there have been exemptions to this rule during the COVID-19 pandemic).
  • you may be ineligible for a PGWP if your authorized leave is longer than 150 days.
  • your work off campus was unauthorized (e.g. you were not authorized to work, or you worked more hours than the permitted amount).
  • 180 days have elapsed since the academic program's completion.
  • you participated in one of the Canadian Governmental Scholarship Programs.
  • you have been issued a PGWP before, following another program of study.

Review this IRCC webpage for the full list of eligibility criteria.

Length of the PGWP

A PWGP is estimated based on the official length of your program of study in Canada. For example, if you graduated from an eight-month program, then you are eligible for an eight-month work permit.

If the official length of your program of study is:

  1. less than two years but more than eight months:
    • you may get a work permit for the same period as the length of your program of study
  2. two years or more:
    • you may get a work permit for three years

The maximum possible length of a PGWP is three years.

Refer to the IRCC website for more information.

Applying for your PGWP

  1. Apply to graduate through your MyQuest account before the graduation application deadline.
  2. In about one month after your final grades are posted, the Office of the Registrar will assess whether you have met the program requirements to receive your credential.
  3. If you meet the graduation requirements, you will receive a completion letter in your MyMail. Once you are issued a completion letter, you are no longer a student and you must stop working.
  4. Download a copy of your final transcript from your MyQuest account, on the day you have received the completion letter. You can use this unofficial transcript to apply for a PGWP.
  5. Collect all necessary documents and apply for a PGWP. You do not need the credential (i.e. diploma or certificate) or official transcript issued by the Office of the Registrar to apply for a PGWP.
  6. Once you have submitted a PGWP, you may start working full-time if your study permit has been valid on the day of submitting the PGWP application. If your study permit has expired after you had submitted a PGWP application, you may continue working full-time until you receive a decision from the IRCC.
  7. Avoid travelling outside of Canada while you are waiting for your work permit.

General supporting documents:

  • Completion letter issued by the Enrolment department. Verify if the graduation date and duration of your program on this letter are correct.
  • Final transcript (unofficial one printed from your MyQuest account or the official one mailed to you from the Office of the Registrar)
  • If your program was affected by COVID-19, you must include a supporting letter sent by the college to explain changes to your program structure by the college. We provided these letters, but you can request this letter by emailing if you haven’t received one.
  • Copy of your passport including main page, any stamps, visas or markings, study permit and co-op work permit if you were issued one.
  • Digital photo as per the IRCC specifications.
  • Filled out the application form “Application to Change Conditions, Extend my Stay or Remain in Canada as a Worker [IMM5710]”
    • This form is to be filled out online. To sign the form, type in your full name. Once the application is filled out and verified, click “Validate”. After validating, the form will be locked out for any changes. Do not print off and/or rescan this form.
  • Family Information Form (IMM5707) if it appears on your document checklist.
  • If there is a need to add clarity to your academic path (e.g. you took time off, or were enrolled part-time at some point, or switched institutions, or took a program at an accelerated path), include an explanation letter written by you. If you took an authorized leave from studies, include a letter from the college confirming that.
  • For medical professions and jobs related to working with children, a medical exam must be done by an IRCC authorized panel physician within the last 12 months.
  • You may need to submit your biometrics (fingerprints). Check the IRCC website whether you need to. The biometrics fee is $85 CAD.
  • The PGWP processing fee is $255 CAD.

How to apply

  • Log into your MyCIC account and click “Apply to come to Canada” under “Start an Application”.
  • You will be asked if you have a personal checklist code (reference code). If you don’t have one, click “Visitor visa, study and/or work permit” under “Determine your eligibility and apply online”, which is found at the bottom of the page.
  • Otherwise, you can complete the eligibility questionnaire from the IRCC website, get a personal checklist code, and then enter it into your MyCIC account.
  • Upon completing this questionnaire, on the “Your results” page, select “Post-Graduation Work Permit”.
  • After uploading all the needed documents, submit and send the application.

You must receive both an instant confirmation that your application was submitted, and an email that your application is being submitted (which is received overnight). Take a picture of the confirmation you receive and save it as proof.

Tips to help you fill out the IMM5710 application form

If you are not sure about parts of your application, ask your international student advisor before submitting it.

Here are some helpful tips to get you started. The question numbers refer to questions in your application form.

  • Question 3 - What am I applying for?

    Select "Apply for a work permit for the first time or with a new employer".

  • Question 7 - Current country of residence "to" date?

    "From" is the date you entered Canada; "To" is the date your study permit expires.

    What is my Street No. and Street Name?

    Make sure you enter the mailing address correctly, as this is where your work permit will be mailed. "Street no." refers to the house number. It is the main number on the outside of a building. Some "street names" also contain numbers. For example, NorQuest College’s address would be entered as follows:
    Example address

    Do not abbreviate words (Street, Avenue, Boulevard, Drive, etc.) except for directions (NW, SE, W, etc.).

    How do I complete the details for prospective employer and the job title?

    This information does not apply to the PGWP applicants. You do not require a job offer to apply.

Check the IRCC website for more tips on filling out your application form.

Video tutorial

Are you an active student at NorQuest College or a recent graduate? Review our PGWP video tutorial course to learn important information about the program, including:

  • eligibility criteria
  • when and how to apply
  • filling out the questionnaire in your MyCIC account
  • filling out the application form (IMM 5710 E)
  • working/travelling while waiting for your PGWP
  • introduction to Permanent Residency pathways

View the PGWP video tutorial course