The Canadian government offers a set of immigration programs under the International Experience Class (IEC) for young residents of participating countries who want to travel and experience work life in Canada. This program encourages young people to come to Canada to experience life in Canada.
There are 3 categories of the IEC:
- Working Holiday
- Young Professionals
- International Co-op Internship
The IEC is based on bilateral youth mobility agreements with 36 different countries, therefore, Canadians are offered the same opportunities to work and travel in participating countries. The IEC is part of the International Mobility Program, meaning applicants will not be required to have a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to be eligible for a temporary work permit, saving them a lot of time and effort in trying to obtain one.
Currently, 34 countries are participating in the IEC program and offer at least one of the categories mentioned above. Each category has its requirements and eligibility criteria.
Who Can Apply for the Working Holiday Program in Canada?
The Working Holiday program is for applicants who want to work for a short period of 1 to 2 years in Canada with an open work permit. An open work permit authorizes you to work anywhere in Canada with any employer.
If you want to work in Canada in more than one location for more than one employer or travel and explore Canada while working, this is the visa program for you.
Who Can Apply for the Young Professionals Program in Canada?
The Young Professionals program is for applicants who want to gain Canadian work experience while staying in one place in Canada. Applicants under this program are issued an employer-specific work permit, see temporary work permit.
Applicants must have a valid job offer at the time of application and must create a profile on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website.
Who Can Apply for the International Co-op Internship Program in Canada?
The International Co-op Internship program is for applicants who are currently enrolled in a post-secondary institution and want to travel to Canada for an internship required by their study program.
You must have a valid job offer from an employer that you intend to work with throughout your stay in Canada. The work permit issued under this program is an employer-specific work permit, see temporary work permit.