CIMM — Nigeria Student Express and student direct stream – February 15 & 17, 2022
February 11, 2022
Student Direct Stream
- Student Direct Stream (SDS) is a program to facilitate processing; it does not give international students better access to Canadian schools or programs.
- In assessing suitability for SDS, the Department looks at whether residents have the ability to obtain a Canadian guaranteed investment certificate (GIC) through a banking affiliate in that country. The Department also examines whether applications from residents of that country can consistently be processed in the 20-day processing time without compromising client service and while maintaining program integrity, based on the eligibility and admissibility requirements under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations (IRPA/IRPR).
- For SDS to be implemented, it requires the presence of a financial institution able to provide a suitable GIC product and the availability of language tests approved for use in SDS.
Nigeria Student Express
- Nigeria was not included in the 2019 expansion of SDS because of the lack of presence of a financial institution able to provide a suitable GIC product.
- In the absence of SDS as an option, the Department recognized the need for a similar program that would benefit Nigerian clients, and therefore launched a pilot tailored to local conditions, Nigeria Student Express (NSE), in January 2020.
- NSE is similar to SDS, except that the applicant must show that they have funds in a bank account (NSE) instead of purchasing a GIC and paying fees as they would for SDS. NSE relies on a local verifiable banking solution (MyBank).
- Stakeholders have expressed concerns that NSE is disadvantageous, and thus discriminatory. Specifically, it has been claimed that SDS only requires the student to show $10,000, while NSE requires $30,000.
- In the original requirements for NSE, applicants were required to have a MyBank certificate showing sufficient funds for their studies (equivalent of CAD$30,000) for at least six months plus 12 months of banking history.
- The perception that SDS is more advantageous is based on a misunderstanding of the funds requirements.
- The amount of funds required for NSE and SDS, as well as the International Student Program as a whole, are equivalent upon comparison (details below).
- NSE is advantageous, since it does not require the applicant to commit funds before submitting the application, unlike SDS.
- The Department will complete an assessment of the NSE pilot in February 2022.
- The Department is exploring the possibility of adding Nigeria and other countries to SDS.
- To qualify for SDS, the applicant must show the following funding requirements:
- Have proof that they have paid for the first year of study
- Have a GIC of $10,000
- The average international student fees in 2021 were $33,623.
- The $10,000 GIC requirement reflects the Department’s estimate on living expenses for one year for a single person, and does not include student fees.
- Under SDS, on average, applicants would need to show that they had paid fees and purchased a GIC for a total of $43,623.
- Funds requirements for NSE were updated in November 2021 to remove the six month requirement. To qualify for NSE, the applicant must:
- Have a MyBank certificate that will demonstrate the applicant can afford the costs of studies and living expenses for the first year in Canada (equivalent of CAD$30,000).
- The MyBank certificate should show at least 12 months of banking history.
- The Department based the NSE amount of $30,000 on average 2020 student fees, plus $10,000 for living expenses.
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