Most students who wanted to study in Canada for September 2015 have made the admission deadlines; very few are still open, especially for graduate students. Although some admission deadlines for international students go as late as May 1st, 2015 for the September 2015 study date, May is most likely too late if you live in Pakistan and need to get a study visa. It takes anywhere from three to five months for a Canadian study permit to be processed.
For those students who plan on studying in Canada for the January 2016 or September 2016 start dates, don’t procrastinate or think you have lots of time. Studying abroad is a major future step that will take your time and your financial resources. You want to make sure that you plan it carefully and that takes time and research.
Undergraduates: If you will be completing high school his coming year and planning to study in Canada next year, now is the time to check out subject requirements for the program you want to study. You will want to see what the minimum requirement is for grades (marks) as well and if you need to write any English language proficiency exams. Admission portals for September 2016 open October 2015 and you will want to start your application as soon as possible, especially if you are an A-star student who is looking for scholarships.
Graduate students: I always advise prospective graduate students who want to study in Canada that it can take up to one year to complete your application. If you want funding or need to find a supervisor before you apply, this can take a number of months to research prospective supervisors and contact them to find out if they will consider you as a candidate.
So, even as admissions close for September 2015, or are already closed, don’t wait; start researching different Canadian universities now. Plan well for your future, you will be glad you did.
If you need assistance or want to make use of a consultant, you might want to consider the experts at Alberta Rose Education Centre. The main consultant is a Canadian with over 27 years experience in the post-secondary education system in Canada.
Currently some of Canada’s post-secondary institutions are sending our Confirmation of Admission letters and scholarship offers. The timing is most helpful for international students, especially Pakistani students who should apply as soon as possible for their student visas.
If you are one of those students who received a scholarship offer, it can be used against the amount of money you must show in your bank statement. For example, if you need to show the equivalent of $35,000 and you are receiving a scholarship of $5000; and then you only need to show $30,000 in your bank account. You would have to send proof that you are indeed receiving that scholarship (a copy of the letter would suffice).
You may receive a letter stating you are receiving more than what will be allotted in the current year; for example, some of the funds may be allotted to the 2nd and 3rd year of your program. This amount you should not report on your study permit application as it doesn’t apply to the current year. You are only showing sufficient funds for the first year of your studies.
If the intent is to study in Canada, although you still have time to confirm offers, but now is the time to start applying for the Student Visa. The visa process can take up to five months or be as short as three.
I have attached a check list of the Canadian government’s requirements for a student visa application. Further details can be obtained at The Canadian High Commission to Pakistan website.
Do Pakistani students get scholarships from Canadian universities? Yes they do! I am so excited for several of my students who were not only admitted to the University of Alberta, but they have also received scholarships. The University of Alberta is currently sending out notifications to their 1st year applicants, offers of scholarships. I have received messages from students and school counsellors saying that they have received offers have ranged from $33,000 to $2,000. Some students have received more than one scholarship.
The University of Alberta provides over $22 million in scholarships per year to incoming undergraduate students. If you are a high achiever you should not be doubtful about applying to Canadian universities such as the University of Alberta; fearful that you won’t get a scholarship. If you are an A or A+ student, you are eligible and there is likely to be a scholarship waiting for you.