News Release – Attracting and retaining international PhD students the focus of new initiative

Ottawa, November 2, 2011 — Canada intends to accept up to 1,000 international PhD students per year as permanent residents through the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Minister of State (Science and Technology) Gary Goodyear announced today, on behalf of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney.

“Doctoral graduates play a unique role in the economy. They drive research, encourage innovation and pass on their knowledge through teaching,” said Minister Goodyear. “And quite simply, Canada needs more of them.”

Starting November 5, 2011, many international PhD students will be eligible to submit applications for processing as federal skilled workers. To be eligible, they must have completed at least two years of study toward the attainment of a PhD and remain in good academic standing at a provincially recognized post-secondary educational institution in Canada.

Those who have recently graduated from a Canadian PhD program will also be eligible to apply, provided they do so within 12 months of their graduation.

“This initiative will provide Canadian universities with one more competitive edge in attracting and retaining top international talent to pursue their doctoral studies in Canada,” said Paul Davidson, President of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada. “We welcome this announcement.”

“Attracting and retaining immigrants with high levels of skill will help Canada compete in the knowledge-based world economy,” Minister Goodyear added. “With this initiative, we are telling the innovators of tomorrow that Canada is ready to welcome them and their ideas.”

International students account for about one-quarter of the students enrolled in Canadian PhD programs.

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For further information (media only), please contact:

Candice Malcolm
Minister's Office
Citizenship and Immigration Canada

CIC Media Relations
Communications Branch
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
613-952-1650
CIC-Media-Relations@cic.gc.ca

Building a stronger Canada: Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) strengthens Canada’s economic, social and cultural prosperity, helping ensure Canadian safety and security while managing one of the largest and most generous immigration programs in the world.

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