Canada-New Brunswick Memorandum of Understanding on a Pilot Project to Issue Work Permits for International Students

Electronic Version

Original signed March 18, 2004


BETWEEN

The Government of Canada as represented by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, herein after referred to as Citizenship and Immigration Canada

AND

The Province of New Brunswick (New Brunswick) as represented by the Minister of Business New Brunswick, herein after referred to as the Department of Business New Brunswick

AND

The Province of New Brunswick as represented by the Minister of the Department of Education, herein after referred to as the Department of Education

AND

The Province of New Brunswick as represented by the Minister of Training, Employment and Development, herein after referred to as the Department of Training, Employment and Development

AND

The Province of New Brunswick as represented by the Minister of Intergovernmental and International Relations, herein after referred to as the Department of Intergovernmental and International Relations

1.0 Preamble

1.1 The parties recognize that providing international students with limited access to the Canadian labour market will enhance the global competitiveness of Canada’s academic institutions while giving international students opportunities to deepen their understanding and appreciation of Canadian society;

1.2 Citizenship and Immigration Canada intends to implement off-campus employment through pilot projects that are consistent with Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, and that lead to a nationally coherent model;

1.3 All parties acknowledge that they are jointly responsible to preserve the integrity of an international student program based on educational priorities;

1.4 Business New Brunswick will coordinate the implementation of this pilot project in cooperation with Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

1.5 The Department of Education will coordinate the participation of eligible institutions and report regularly to Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

1.6 The Department of Training, Employment and Education will provide appropriate labour market information and advice.

1.7 The Department of Intergovernmental and International Relations is the official New Brunswick representative on federal-provincial agreements.

1.8 Certain public post-secondary institutions in New Brunswick are willing to participate in a pilot project under the coordination of Business New Brunswick;

Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the Department of Business New Brunswick, the Department of Education, the Department of Training, Employment and Development, and the Department of Intergovernmental and International Relations agree as follows:

2.0 Purpose and Objective of MOU and Pilot Project

2.1 The objective of this Memorandum of Understanding is to define the terms and conditions of a pilot project to issue work permits to International students for off-campus employment in New Brunswick, and the parties’ respective responsibilities in this regard.

2.2 The objective of the pilot project is to allow international students from participating New Brunswick public post-secondary institutions to engage in off-campus employment. The parties intend that the pilot project will:

  1. provide international students with opportunities to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Canadian society;
  2. be consistent with national immigration policy and regulations with respect to international students;
  3. be consistent with the regionalization and labour market policies of New Brunswick; and
  4. preserve the integrity of an international student program based on educational priorities.

2.3 This Memorandum of Understanding does not impose any financial responsibilities on the parties except that each party will be responsible for the costs it incurs in its own interest, related to its support of the Memorandum of Understanding.

3.0 Definitions

3.1 Except where otherwise provided for in the Memorandum of Understanding, words used in this Memorandum of Understanding that are defined in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, are to have the same meaning in this MOU as set out in this Act and Regulations.

4.0 Pilot Project Organization, Advisory Committee and Project Coordinator

4.1 Citizenship and Immigration Canada intends to:

  1. provide the core eligibility criteria for institutions and students wishing to participate in the pilot project;
  2. outline the type of information they would like to receive from pilot project partners; and
  3. issue work permits to eligible international students, in accordance with guidelines set out in the Foreign Workers Manual.

4.2 The Department of Education intends to:

  1. appoint a Project Coordinator, who will:
    1. coordinate the participation of eligible institutions;
    2. ensure consistent implementation of the pilot project; and
    3. report regularly to Citizenship and Immigration Canada regarding pilot project performance.

4.3 Participating institutions intend to:

  1. Implement pilot project criteria according to a separate Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Education, which provides for their role in monitoring student compliance, ensuring that the pilot project maintains the integrity of Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Foreign Student program; and
  2. report at regular intervals to the Project Coordinator.

4.4 The parties intend to establish an Advisory Committee comprised of representatives of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Business New Brunswick, Department of Training, Employment & Development, Department of Intergovernmental & International Relations, Department of Education, and participating institutions to oversee the functioning of the pilot project and serve as a forum for its on-going evaluation. This Committee intends to meet as needed, at a minimum of three times per year.

5.0 Eligibility Criteria – Institutions and students

5.1 Eligible institutions are public post-secondary institutions in New Brunswick. Eligible institutions that choose to participate in the pilot project must sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Education agreeing to implement the pilot project and monitor student compliance with pilot project criteria. Institutions participating in the pilot project are listed in the Addendum. Any additions to the list may only be made with the prior approval of Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

5.2 Eligible students are those international students attending participating institutions, who

  1. have completed a full academic session of study (two consecutive terms) within the previous 12 (twelve) months at a participating post-secondary institution in New Brunswick;
  2. have been, and will continue to be, registered as full-time students at a participating institution in New Brunswick during regular academic sessions;
  3. have signed a consent form authorizing the exchange of personal information for the purpose of their participation in the pilot project, between the institution, the provincial Departments party to this MOU and Citizenship and Immigration Canada;
  4. maintain acceptable academic standing and continue to make satisfactory progress for their specific program of study;
  5. receive a Verification Form from a participating institution;
  6. continue to fulfill the terms and conditions of their Study Permits and of their Work Permits; and
  7. have not been previously reported for non-compliance with pilot project conditions.

5.3 International students on a Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship Program or a Government of Canada Awards Program funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade or who are funded by the Canadian International Development Agency are not eligible for participation in this pilot project.

5.4 Eligible students who wish to participate in the pilot project will be permitted to apply for work permits allowing them to work in New Brunswick, to a maximum of 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions and full-time during scheduled breaks.

6.0 Roles and Responsibilities

6.1 The Department of Education is responsible for:

  1. ensuring consistent implementation of the pilot project by participating institutions;
  2. signing Memoranda of Understanding with participating institutions outlining the terms of the pilot project, consistent with this Memorandum of Understanding;
  3. working with participating institutions to develop consistent documents to:
    1. inform students of their obligations,
    2. obtain consents from students to allow disclosure of personal information for the purposes of the pilot project,
    3. provide Verification Forms to students from the institutions,
    4. inform employers of the terms and conditions of international student employment, and
    5. report both aggregate and personal data to Citizenship and Immigration Canada
  4. facilitating the development, in cooperation with Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the institutions, of compatible and coordinated data reporting systems and processes between the institutions and Citizenship and Immigration Canada;
  5. informing Citizenship and Immigration Canada of any cases of non-compliance by participants as soon as such information is received from participating institutions; and
  6. processing data provided by the institutions and issuing reports to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, once per regular academic term, containing aggregate data on overall student participation.

6.2 Participating institutions are responsible for:

  1. arranging to have each participating student sign a Student Declaration and Information Release indicating that he/she:
    1. understands and accepts the eligibility criteria underlying participation in the pilot project, and
    2. will report any changes in academic or employment status to the institution, and
    3. consents to the release of personal information for reporting purposes to pilot project partners, and
    4. consents to disclosure and exchange of personal information among their educational institution, the Department of Education, and Citizenship and Immigration Canada to verify that he/she is complying with the requirements of the pilot project;
  2. verifying that each participating student meets eligibility criteria and that he/she has maintained an acceptable academic standing for his/her specific program of study before issuing a verification form allowing the student to apply for a work permit;
  3. forwarding student applications for work permits, along with signed Student Declaration and Information Release Forms, and Verification Forms verifying student eligibility, directly to the Citizenship and Immigration Canada Case Processing Centre;
  4. enforcing compliance with eligibility criteria by not supporting the renewal of work permits for students who fail to meet the eligibility criteria;
  5. ensuring that students inform employers of the conditions under which international students are eligible to work off-campus by requiring them to return a form signed by the employer indicating that they are aware of those conditions;
  6. cooperating with the provincial Departments party to this MOU and with Citizenship and Immigration Canada in the development of compatible and coordinated data reporting systems and processes;
  7. verifying status and academic standing of all participating students once per term, and informing the Project Coordinator immediately of any cases of non-compliance; and
  8. issuing reports to the Project Coordinator, at least once per regular academic term, containing aggregate data on overall student participation and more detailed information on cases of non-compliance.

6.3 Citizenship and Immigration Canada is responsible for:

  1. cooperating with the provincial Departments party to this MOU and participating institutions in the development of compatible and coordinated data reporting systems and processes;
  2. issuing work permits for a duration of one year, or the duration of the Study Permit, whichever period is shorter, to applicants who continue to meet the requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations, and for whom a participating institution has submitted applications, completed by the students, with signed consents to disclosure of personal information and letters of support from the institution verifying the eligibility of the students; and
  3. specifying as a limiting condition on those work permits, full-time attendance at a participating public post-secondary institution in New Brunswick during regular academic sessions and permission to work in New Brunswick, to a maximum of 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions and full-time during scheduled breaks.

7.0 Designated Contact Offices

7.1 Each party has designated an office that will be responsible for ensuring the integrity of the Memorandum of Understanding and serve as the main point of contact for any questions or concerns arising from the Memorandum of Understanding.

7.2 The designated contact offices for the Memorandum of Understanding are

For Citizenship and Immigration Canada:
Economic Policy and Programs
Selection Branch
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Jean Edmonds Tower North
300 Slater Street – 7th Floor
Ottawa, ON K1A 1L1

For the Province of New Brunswick:
The Department of Education
Post-Secondary Affairs
P.O. Box 6000
Fredericton, New Brunswick
E3B 5H1

8.0 Evaluation

8.1 The Memorandum of Understanding will run for a period of two years. At the end of the Memorandum of Understanding, the Project Coordinator appointed by New Brunswick under section 4.2a) will provide Citizenship and Immigration Canada with a final report including details of student participation and compliance with pilot project criteria, as well as an analysis of the pilot project’s success in meeting its objectives.

8.2 The parties intend to conduct a formal evaluation of the pilot project early in its second year, in accordance with the established standards of Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the provincial Departments party to this MOU.

9.0 Amendment, Termination or Renewal

9.1 This Memorandum of Understanding will be in effect for a period of two years commencing on May 1st, 2004.

9.2 This Memorandum of Understanding can be amended by the mutual written agreement of the parties.

9.3 The contact information in 7.2 is subject to change without requiring amendment to this Memorandum of Understanding. All changes should be communicated to the other parties in writing

9.4 The list of institutions contained in the Addendum is subject to change without requiring amendment to this Memorandum of Understanding. All changes should be communicated to the other parties in writing.

9.5 At the end of the two-year period, the parties can either choose to renew the current Memorandum of Understanding, amend and renew the Memorandum of Understanding or terminate the Memorandum of Understanding.

9.6 Any party may terminate the Memorandum of Understanding at any time by written notice to all other parties as early as possible and no less than three (3) months prior to the date of termination. Students participating in the Pilot Project would be able to continue working until the end of the validity period of their work permit.

9.7 Notwithstanding the termination of this MOU pursuant to 9.4 or 9.5, participating institutions will continue to monitor and report on student compliance in respect of students whose work permits have not yet expired, until the validity period of their work permit ends.

9.8 Participating educational institutions will stop providing verification forms for students when written notification of intent to terminate is received.

10.0 Other

10.1 All collection, use, disclosure, retention and destruction of personal information under this Memorandum of Understanding will be in conformity with the requirements of the Privacy Act R.S.C. 1985, c. P-21, and with the New Brunswick “Right to Information Act” and the “Protection of Personal Information Act” and all Regulations made under those Acts.

10.2 The English and French versions of this Memorandum of Understanding are equally authoritative.

11.0 Ratification

11.1 Signed this 18th day of March, 2004 in duplicate in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada by the following official representatives of the two parties to this Memorandum of Understanding:

FOR CANADA

Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada or designate

FOR NEW BRUNSWICK

Minister of Business New Brunswick

Minister of Education

Minister of Training, Employment and Development

Minister of Intergovernmental and International Relations

ADDENDUM

Participating institutions pursuant to section 5.1

Date Modified: