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The Cushier Way To Study In Canada

An unusual initiative by one of the more prosperous provinces in Canada offers students the opportunity to reclaim up to CAD 20,000 of their tuition fees if they stay on in the province after graduate studies and work for a few years. Bordered on the west by Alberta and on the east by Manitoba, Saskatchewan is a picturesque prairie province in Canada. One of ten of the country’s provinces, it takes the lead in terms of economic growth and offers some of the easiest ways of being a student in Canada.
BY Kavita Singh |   January 2011

I was recently invited to attend a round table conference with officials from the Province of Saskatchewan, held at the Canadian High Commission in Delhi. With its robust growth, it is not surprising that Saskatchewan’s unemployment rate of 5% is the lowest in the country, well below the national average of 8.1% as per the June 2010, Statistics Canada, Labor Force Survey.

Saskatchewan has two established, government-accredited universities that attract the lion’s share of international students: the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina. According to university data tracking enrolments for the Fall session in 2011, India and Bangladesh were among the top six countries to send students to the Canadian province of Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan has several policies which can be attractive to international students. These include:

1. Graduate Retention Program

The Graduate Retention Program (GRP) rewards you for building your future in Saskatchewan by providing a rebate up to CAD 20,000 of tuition fees paid by eligible graduates who live in Saskatchewan who file a Saskatchewan income tax return.

The Graduate Retention Program introduced in January 1, 2008 has been effective in attracting students and keeping them in Saskatchewan. The GRP provision allows universities in Saskatchewan to issue certificates to recent graduates, who are now able to get their tuition costs back if they remain and work in the province after they graduate.

2. Saskatchewan Health Insurance

International students who go to Saskatchewan are eligible to receive Saskatchewan Government Health Insurance coverage starting the day they arrive at no cost – provided they have a valid Study Permit.

3. Saskatchewan Immigration Nominee Program

The Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) can provide an alternate and quicker means of entry into Canada. Through SINP, the Saskatchewan Ministry facilitates the nomination of applicants to the federal government for landed immigrant status, based on criteria established by the province. 

The SINP offers:

  • The ability to select applicants whose skills and abilities best fit the province’s needs;

  • Application processing times faster than other federal immigration classes; and

  • Assistance from Provincial Immigration Officers who are readily available to explain program requirements and processes.

The SINP works through Government of Canada embassies and consulates around the world and does not engage the exclusive services of any agencies or representatives in any jurisdictions.

Kavita Singh holds an MBA degree from Columbia Business School and has a BA Honors degree from Oxford University. She has over 13 years of experience working in the United States and India and is the CEO of a leading admissions consulting firm called FutureWorks Consulting.



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