International Students

Finding a job in can be difficult in any country, but it can be even more challenging if you are an international student. However, by following the best job-searching tips, you can position yourself for successful employment opportunities. For starters, you want to ensure that you fully understand Canada’s specific work regulations. It is important to note that you must apply for a Social Insurance Number. With a Social Insurance Number, you can work a certain number of hours depending on your visa status.

The waiver on the 20-hour-per-week limit on the number of hours international students are allowed to work off campus while class is in session will be extended to April 30, 2024. International students already in Canada, as well as applicants who have already submitted an application for a study permit as of December 7, 2023, will be able to work off campus more than 20 hours per week until that time.

We continue to examine options for this policy in the future, such as expanding off-campus work hours for international students to 30 hours per week while class is in session.  You can receive a Post Graduate Work Permit for up to three years as an international student after receiving your degree, but the length of time you receive a Post Graduate Work Permit for will depend on how strictly you adhered to the criteria when you were a student. Visit the Post Graduate Work Permit Regulations for additional information.

Job Searching in Canada for International Students

Discover the Canadian job market as an international student and learn how to sell yourself to potential employers to secure a job during this informative webinar.

Job Searching Strategies

Now that you know what you legally require to obtain a job in Canada and how many hours you are eligible to work, it is time to begin your career planning. A successful job or internship search involves using a combination of strategies. Here are some tips for international students:

Explore the Labor Market: Studying the current labour market is an excellent strategy for career planning, in other words, learning about job trends, the skills employers are seeking, which industries are hiring, where jobs are located, and the areas of job growth or decline. Ultimately, researching labour market trends and positioning yourself to fill gaps in the labour market is a way for those who hold post-graduate work permits or permanent resident status to contribute to the Canadian economy.

Identify Your Skills: Knowing your strengths is essential for creating an effective cover letter and resume and filling out application forms. This could persuade potential employers that you are the ideal candidate. Your skills can come from prior employment, volunteer work, education, and even activities in your personal life. Make sure to tailor your skills based on each job you apply for.

Research International-Employee-Friendly Employers: Hiring international employees is an advantage for many organizations. Researching which companies have hired international students in the past will help you narrow down your options.

Choose a Resume Style That Fits You Best: Make sure to choose and create an appropriate resume style and write a powerful cover letter before applying. Choosing the right resume style will ensure that you highlight your most important attributes whether it be experience, education, and/or skills. Seek advice and feedback from the Career Services team on how to highlight your international experience in your Canadian resume.

Network: An essential part of job searching is networking. Building your professional network allows you to access the hidden job market – referring to the 80 percent of vacant positions that are not published openly. You have an advantage if you learn about opportunities through your network. Networking involves using a variety of personal and professional connections to gain information about the profession or industry you are looking to enter. These individuals might be classmates, professionals, senior alumni, or an employer of interest.

For this reason, it is essential to participate in job fairs, volunteermake the most of your LinkedIn page, and maintain connections with current and former students. Making these connections can lead to you receiving referrals in the future. It may not come easy to some people to have these kinds of conversations; therefore, the more you practice and speak with people, the more comfortable you will become. Try to arrange informational interviews to help you prepare for formal interactions – and learn about the labour market and employers, and make connections – in the meantime! 

Another key to networking and finding employment is using websites specifically geared to international students. Here are a few, and there are many more out there!

  1. National Occupational Classification
  2. Canada Job Bank
  3. Student Application Form for Employment
  4. Moving 2 Canada
  5. Prepare for Canada
  6. Ways International Students get Hired

If you are an international student needing help with your career planning and job search, reach out to Career Services to request an appointment with one of our Career Advisors.

Congratulations! You got a job – but now what? Achieving employment after graduation is very exciting but can be stressful at the same time. Once you get a job, it is equally important to learn how you can keep your job and grow in your career through professional development and continuous learning. Many issues can affect you in the workplace, including safety matters, human rights concerns, bullying & harassment, etc. In addition, for newcomers and immigrants, a lack of knowledge of Canadian workplace cultures, expectations, and values can add more stress. It is important to learn some of the key aspects of job retention and your workplace rights and responsibilities, which will help you be successful in maintaining and growing your career. Know Your Rights: As an employee, the first thing you need to know is your rights in Canada. You also need to know about the laws and regulations that will protect you in terms of your pay, hours of work, and safety at the workplace. In Canada, we have “The Employment Standards Act” (ESA) and it is governed by law: This Act provides the basic minimum standards that employers must follow in the workplace. Some companies may have policies that give employees more than the minimum entitlements by law; however, no one should be working for standards less than the ESA outlines. Each province has its own set of laws.” Each province has its own ESA and the principles behind the standards are similar between provinces, with some minor differences. You can easily find this by doing an online search, for example, “The employment standards act of [your province]”. Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA): As a worker in Canada, you also have the right to a safe work environment. We have a law called the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Each province has its own version of the Act and they contain similar details. For example, click on this link to learn about Ontario’s. The OHSA sets out the rights and duties of workers, supervisors, and employers in keeping workplaces safe and healthy in provincially regulated workplaces. Your basic rights under the OHSA are:
  • The right to know about hazards in the workplace
  • The right to refuse unsafe work
  • The right to participate in ensuring a safe work environment

Cultural Expectations and Norms: Besides knowing your rights and responsibilities, it is also important to understand the cultural expectations of your workplace. Remember, you may be a good fit based on your competencies and skills, but if you do not understand the cultural expectations in your workplace, this could make you less successful on the job. Understanding workplace culture helps you feel more satisfied with your job. Although it may vary based on the industry and workplace, here are some strategies to understand your workplace culture and build meaningful relationships with your coworkers:
  • Ask Questions: Choose someone with whom you feel comfortable in your workplace, and who you can trust to ask questions. For example, your co-worker or supervisor would have insights into how the company works.
  • Be Observant: There are many “unwritten rules” that exist in a company, so play the role of an observer in understanding the unwritten rules in your organization.
  • Be Patient: Starting a new job is stressful, and it usually takes time to feel comfortable in a new environment, so be patient while you learn the workplace culture. If you are not sure about anything, be polite and ask questions in a way that is considerate of other people’s feelings.

Workability Attitudes: While it is important to understand the cultural expectations and norms at your workplace, developing workability attitudes and skills are paramount in order to be successful in maintaining your job. Workability attitudes are those attitudes that you show towards people or tasks, and workability skills are abilities that are essential to any job. According to Alberta Learning Information Service, the top job retention attitudes are:
  • Reliability and Dependability: demonstrating to your employer that you are a reliable worker who works to the best of your ability.
  • Positive Attitude: showing that you are confident and have a positive outlook towards work and life.
  • Honesty and Integrity: acting in an ethical way and showing integrity in every aspect of your work.
  • Concern for Quality: having a growth mindset and being determined to continuously improve through professional development.
  • Independence and Initiative: taking initiative to solve problems and seeing what needs to be done. Also being responsible for the results.
  • Commitment to Your Employer and Work: showing loyalty to your employer and commitment to your job.
  • Adaptability: having an attitude that helps you deal with changes in your life and your work in order to reach your goals and succeed in the workplace.
  • Managing Risks: recognizing risks that can occur and taking responsibility for managing your behavior and actions in acceptable ways.
  • Courtesy: showing a basic level of caring and respect for those around you.
  • Positive Attitude Towards Learning: a willingness to learn and keep on learning.

Career Development and Growth: Change is constant in today’s workplace. To grow in your career, you need to keep learning. Ongoing learning also makes it easier to land your next job, if you ever need to get a new job or decide to change careers. You need to stay current in terms of updating your skills and growing your knowledge to prepare for the future. Here are some strategies to remember:
  • Plan your learning with your career path in mind
  • Identify what you need to learn right away – in other words, your short-term learning goals
  • Identify what you want to learn over time, i.e., setting long-term learning goals
  • Adapt to a changing future
  • Understand your learning style
  • Find out about learning options

Strategies to Balance Your Lifestyle: Finally, it is important to balance your life and work. Today’s life is hectic, and change is constant. Sometimes life can be stressful with so many roles and responsibilities, and certainly work can add more stress to our lives. According to Alberta Learning Information Service, here are some strategies to create a sense of balance between work and life:
  • Say “no” to job tasks outside of work hours that are not essential. Talk to your supervisor if you are not able to manage your workload and ask for additional support
  • Make time for downtime. Stress management experts say, “taking time to relax is a necessity, not a luxury”.
  • Get organized and prioritize using calendars.
  • Use your time efficiently. Do the most important work during a time when you are more productive.
  • Set realistic standards. For example, if you have a young family, aiming for a perfectly clean house all the time creates stress.
  • Have an agreement with other household members about the standards you can reasonably maintain and share the household chores with other members of your family.
  • Consider flexible work arrangements such as working part-time or working on a contract basis, based on your needs.

At Career Services, we recognize that international students face some unique challenges when it comes to finding work – whether it’s your first part-time job or your first professional job after graduation. For example,

  • Most students are worried because they either have never had a job or have no work experience in Canada
  • International students tend to be unaware of what kinds of jobs are available, plus
  • You are likely inexperienced in job search – in other words, things like:
    • Where to look for a job?
    • What kind of job can you get?
    • What are your rights as a worker in Canada?
    • How do you make a resume?
    • How should you talk to an employer in a job interview?
    • What do you need to know about our workplace culture?

In addition, you are no doubt so busy with your studies and student life that you might find it hard to find time to learn all these new skills. All of this uncertainty and newness can create a lot of anxiety for students! But remember – we are here to help with all of this, and that’s why Yorkville subscribed to a website called Devant!

Devant is a career planning platform for international students, designed by career professionals who were once international students themselves. The platform supplements the services offered by the Career Services team and the great thing about it is that you can access it 24/7. If you are not yet in Canada, this will really help you overcome the difficulties of being in a different time zone. Plus, even students who are in Canada often want to meet with a Career Advisor in the evenings or on weekends – because that’s the only time you have available – and our staff are not available to meet during these times.

The site features:

  • Synchronous and asynchronous events, e.g.,
    • Virtual (national) job fairs – 3 per year, including at least 20 employers from top companies across Canada
    • Expert panels representing various occupations and industries that you might be interested in working in one day
    • Since you will have questions sometimes about your status, Devant’s immigration lawyer, Ziah Sumar, is available to answer students’ immigration questions during live immigration Q&A events
  • Resume Building Tool where you can learn about the different sections of a resume and complete it one section at a time – and then the site produces a completed version for you!
  • Comprehensive Job Search Masterclass, which includes several brief videos and quizzes – and after completing it, you get a certificate!
  • Canadian Workplace Culture videos (you can earn a certificate upon completion)
  • There is a Facebook group that you can join, where the members are other international students just like you – so you can share stories, tips, and make friends
  • Bi-weekly newsletter
  • Plus, there is a job board featuring special jobs posted by employers just for Devant, and the jobs we post on our Yorkville career portal can be found there too!

Of course, Career Services can support you in most of these areas as well. Some of the ways we can help you that are different from Devant include:

  • Teaching you about possible careers in your field of study so that you can decide what kind of a job you want to do after graduation
  • In addition to coaching you about resumes and job searching, we can conduct mock interviews with you for practice, before you attend a real interview
  • Plus, we can show you some ways to make important career decisions when you might be feeling confused
  • And finally, our Career Advisors can meet with you 1:1 to help you with your unique needs

If you are a Yorkville University international student and you would like to register for Devant, Click here.

Your Career Advisors

Akshay Arora (he/him), Career Services Advisor, BBA BC, BBA Global
[email protected]

Hello everyone, my name is Akshay Arora and I work as a Career Services Advisor at Yorkville University.

With over a year and a half of experience leading the Work Integrated Learning and Career Development department at a Canadian post-secondary institution, I have cultivated expertise in empowering students from diverse backgrounds to effectively navigate the job market. My focus has been on helping them identify and overcome employment barriers, develop essential skills, and secure positions within their chosen fields.

Guiding international students of various nationalities regarding the job search strategies, job applications; resume & cover letters, and interview skills through 1:1 sessions and workshops has been a rewarding journey. My vision is to empower international students to secure employment in the Canadian job market by supporting and remedying their fears by sharing coaching strategies.

In my personal life, I’m a passionate cricketer, a psychology enthusiast, and a lover of life-related literature, which further fuels my commitment to understanding the human psyche.

Together, we will guide you, the students of Yorkville University, through the realms of employment, cover letters, and interviews, all with the goal of empowerment and achievement.

Amanda Lecce (she/her), Employability Coach, Ontario BBA
[email protected]

Hello! My name is Amanda, and I am the Employability Coach at Yorkville University. My role is to support current undergraduate students and recent alumni with a range of career related services, including resume/cover letter preparations, navigating the Canadian labor market, researching job opportunities, preparing for interviews, and understanding employment rights and responsibilities.

With each student I support, I strive to adapt to their unique preferred learning style, increasing their self-confidence, and ultimately assisting them in finding employment related to their field of study. I am passionate about delivering exceptional client service and building and maintaining long lasting meaningful relationships with each student.

I am a committed community services professional with a background in Child & Youth from Seneca College. I have extensive experience as a career coach from my prior work in the non-profit and education management sectors. My areas of expertise include resume coaching, relationship building, workshop facilitation, and mock interviews. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, playing video games, and watching reality television!

Heather King-Andrews (she/her), Career Services Advisor, Yorkville University 
[email protected]

Hello! My name is Heather, and I’m the Career Advisor for the New Brunswick campus of Yorkville University. My experience as a career practitioner began in 2019, spanning the post-secondary and non-profit sectors. My role consists of advising and helping students find work through a positive, strengths-based, and client-centered approach. My education includes an M. Ed. in Educational Counselling and a Career Development Practitioner Certificate. What motivates me most is supporting students in their career journeys, and I have coached hundreds of people with their resumes, cover letters, interview skills, self-esteem, confidence building, and securing meaningful employment! 

I also have 14+ years’ research experience in psychiatry, public health, and medical sciences. My roles ranged from research analyst to program coordinator of a pan-Canadian cardiology research network. I have authored 4 scholarly publications and have presented at various conferences.

When I’m not at work, I am a certified RAD dance instructor in classical ballet, lyrical jazz and hip hop and have been teaching dance to children and youth for 14+ years on both sides of the country! I also enjoy hot yoga, traveling and musical theatre. Please feel free to reach out and connect, I would love to hear how I can help you in your career journey. 


Laura Fraser (she/her), Career Services Advisor, Yorkville University 
[email protected]

Hi there! My name is Laura, and I am a Career Services Advisor at Yorkville University. My role is to support Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology students land a practicum placement and assist with finding their first positions upon graduation. I’m here to help with career exploration, resume and cover letter writing, networking, mock interviews, and job search techniques to help our students jumpstart their counselling careers. I pride myself on supporting students with a solution-focused approach to assist them in putting their best foot forward when it comes to taking the next step in their career journey.

For over 10 years, I have been working with young people to help them achieve educational goals, gain employment, and learn new skills. Before Yorkville, I have worked as a high school guidance counsellor and as an employment program coordinator in the non-profit sector supporting newcomers start their careers in Canada. I hold a Master of Education in Counselling and have completed several courses through the Career Professionals of Canada National Association.

When I’m not at work, I enjoy trying new recipes, hosting family and friends, traveling with my partner and catching up on my favourite reality shows. Please don’t hesitate to reach out and connect – I truly look forward to meeting you!

Alexandra Stancato  (she/her), Career Services Advisor, Toronto Film School & Yorkville University 
[email protected]

Hi there! My name is Alex, and I am a Career Advisor at Toronto Film School. It is my job to help students and alumni unlock their potential by providing them with the tools and education necessary to reach their career goals. Through a strength-based, solution-focused approach I assist students in career exploration, preparing for work, finding work, and managing their employment.

Throughout my professional history, I have successfully supported the career development of over 600 individuals. Prior to TFS, I worked with various populations such as adults, newcomers, and at-risk youth in 1:1 and group settings. In addition, I have led 140+ tech students through engaging Professional and Life Skills Development courses. I am passionate about education, and am currently working towards my Master of Education, Adult Education, with Yorkville University. 

When I am not working or studying, I’m wandering around Toronto’s thrift stores with a cup of coffee in hand. I adore finding hidden gems to decorate my home with, or unique pieces to add to my wardrobe. In addition, I love spending time with my partner playing board games, or simply lounging at home with my black cat, Beau.


Natalia Markman (she/her), Career Services Advisor, Toronto Film School & Yorkville University 
[email protected]

Hi! I’m Natalia Markman, Career Services Advisor at Toronto Film School/Yorkville University. I have 6+ years of experience providing outcome focused employment counselling to clients from different walks of life.

I started my career in 2016, after completing my Master’s degree in Immigration and Settlement Studies at Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson). At my first job, I assisted 150+ newcomers to Canada with job searching and applications for educational programs. I then switched to working with groups of at-risk youth facing barriers to employment and helped them gain job search skills. I have delivered pre-employment workshops and ensured job readiness for 700+ young people.

After gaining valuable experience in the non-profit sector, I pursued my dream to work in post-secondary and joined Toronto Film School/Yorkville University. I have assisted over 160 students from creative programs with a variety of job search needs. My passion is to help my clients realize their potential, set clear goals and find a job that makes them feel fulfilled.

I immigrated twice in my life, and I understand the nuances of being new to a country, trying to settle down and find your place in a different society. I speak 3 languages and have family and friends spread all over the world. I live in Toronto with my husband and our son who was born in 2022. Outside of work, I enjoy quality family time, hot yoga, ballroom dancing and reading books.

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We prepare international students for career success in Canada.

 This includes a suite of job search support that provides you with the knowledge, tools, and connections to successfully showcase your skills and experiences in the Canadian job market.

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