Study permits: Working on campus

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

On-campus employment

Full-time post-secondary students may work without a work permit on the campus of the university or college at which they are a full-time student [R186(f)]. This authorization is valid for the period for which they hold a study permit at the institution and during which they are enrolled in full-time studies.

This regulation applies to students who are

  • engaged in full-time studies at
    • a public post-secondary institution, such as
      • a college
      • a trade or technical school
      • a university
      • a CEGEP (in Quebec)
    • a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as public institutions in Quebec
    • a private or public secondary or post-secondary institution in Quebec offering qualifying programs of 900 hours or longer leading to
      • a diploma of vocational studies (DVS)
      • an attestation of vocational specialization (AVS)
    • a Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees, such as an associate, bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree, but only if the student is enrolled in a program of study leading to a degree, as authorized by the province, which may not include all programs of study offered by the private institution
  • working
    • at any number of jobs on campus or
    • as a research or teaching assistant at facilities off campus in research related to their research grant. These facilities can include teaching hospitals, clinics and research institutes that have a formal association or affiliation with the learning institution.

Definition of on-campus work

On-campus work is defined as occurring at employment facilities within the boundaries of the campus. The students are only allowed to work on the campus of the educational institution at which they are registered in full-time studies. If an institution has more than one campus, the student can work at different locations on those campuses provided they are within the same municipality. If an institution has campuses in different cities, the student is restricted to working on the institution’s campus where they are registered as a full-time student.

Students may work on campus as teaching or research assistants and may be located at a library, hospital, or research facility affiliated with the institution but located outside the physical boundaries of the institution’s campus. This is allowed provided that the work is strictly related to the student’s research grant.

The employer can be any of the following:

  • the institution
  • a faculty
  • a student organization
  • the students themselves (self-employment taking place on campus)
  • a private business
  • a private contractor providing services to the institution on the campus

Some universities and colleges are located in city centres. On-campus employers include those whose businesses serve the general public, as long as the place of business is located on the institution’s campus.

Note: Students need a social insurance number (SIN) to work in Canada. To apply for a SIN for on-campus employment, they must have a valid study permit. Students can apply for a SIN before or within the first 3 days of employment.

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