International Student Support

New Brunswick Schools Advocate for International Student Support Amid Federal Caps

New Brunswick’s post-secondary institutions are grappling with the repercussions of new federal caps on international student numbers. Despite recent efforts by the immigration department to ease restrictions, schools like St. Thomas University are expressing concerns about the limitations hindering their capacity to accept more international students.

Challenges Faced by St. Thomas University

St. Thomas University, for instance, has seen a rise in the number of attestation letters it can issue to international students, now totaling 314 compared to the previous 199. While this change is welcomed, Ryan Sullivan, the associate vice president of enrolment management, believes it still falls short of meeting the university’s desired intake.

Federal Caps on International Students

In January, Immigration Minister Marc Miller announced caps on international student permits for 2024, aiming to stabilize Canada’s growth. These caps are a response to the need to manage the influx of international students and restore the integrity of the system. However, the caps have posed challenges for institutions like St. Thomas University, disrupting their expansion plans.

See also  Shaping Canada’s Future: IRCC Opens Public Consultations for the Immigration Levels Plan

Impact on New Brunswick

New Brunswick, along with three other provinces, is expected to experience a 10% reduction in study permit approvals compared to the previous year. To address this, a higher number of applications will be allowed, accompanied by attestation letters. The allocation of these letters has been increased for all designated learning institutions in New Brunswick to support their international student recruitment efforts.

Challenges with Attestation Letters

Despite the increase in attestation letters, institutions have raised concerns about the lengthy process involved in obtaining them. This uncertainty has led to difficulties in planning for the upcoming academic year, with some institutions questioning whether the letters will be ready in time for fall approvals.

See also  The Latest IRCC Update: Understanding Immigration Inventories and Backlogs

Competition from Other Countries

The tightened regulations in Canada have prompted institutions in competing destination countries like the UK, the US, and Australia to capitalize on the situation by positioning themselves as more favorable options for international students.

Efforts to Improve Conversion Rates

To address the low conversion rates of study permit applications, Ottawa is collaborating with Canadian post-secondary institutions. One strategy being considered is requiring first-semester fees to be paid before issuing attestation letters, as financial capability plays a significant role in successful applications.

Advocacy Efforts

Stakeholders from New Brunswick schools continue to advocate for support from the federal government to address these challenges collectively. The aim is to ensure that institutions can effectively recruit and support international students while balancing local labor market needs and accommodation capacities.

See also  Newfoundland and Labrador Introduces Upgrades to Immigration Accelerator Portal

The plight of New Brunswick schools amidst federal caps on international student numbers underscores the importance of collaborative efforts to address the complexities of student recruitment and support. By working together with government stakeholders, institutions can navigate challenges and continue to provide valuable educational opportunities for international students, enriching both the academic landscape and the local community.

Add ImmigCanada to Your Google News Feed

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.