Canada is home to the worldwide acclaimed community colleges and institutions because of its highly advanced educational system. Every year, many international students apply to Canadian community colleges in the hope of getting well-paid jobs after graduation or pursuing their favorite field of study.
Additionally, the gripping thing is that colleges in Canada are more affordable than in some countries. Although there is no tuition-free in Canada, the country has nearly 150 community colleges. So, let’s jump into what community college is and how it can help international students.
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What is a community college?
A community college is an educational institution that offers post-secondary programs to students. It also provides students with various low-cost courses. What makes this college different is its short-term courses. Once you take courses at these institutions, it takes up to a maximum of two years to complete the program. However, depending on the degree, it varies from a two-week short course to a 2-year AA (Associate of Arts) or AS (Associate of Science) degree.
Community college is a launching pad for enthusiastic students to follow their dreams and find the job opportunities they want. It is the same as a junior college, where students can prepare for higher academic education (graduate and postgraduate). In a nutshell, it is a hub for all students seeking short-term vocational and technical training.
How can Canadian community colleges help international students?
The first question that might come into your mind is, do community colleges accept international students? The answer is yes. However, international students should have completed their secondary education to be eligible applicants. Considering time and budget, community colleges are ideal options for international students. For instance, Canada’s average monthly cost of living varies between 600 to 800 CAD. So, being budget-friendly is the one feature that these institutions have to help the international students.
Aside from affordability for international students, community colleges provide career-oriented subjects for the applicants to focus more on practical skills. Also, if the student completes their post-secondary program successfully and is eligible for the post-graduation work permit, they can work in Canada after graduation.
Benefits of attending Canadian community colleges for international students
Affordability is not the only perk Canadian community colleges can offer international students. They also have considerable advantages that attract students to study at Canadian colleges. Let’s see what they are.
- Easy transfer to top universities
International students completing their programs at Canadian community colleges have a better chance of admission to top universities. They can continue their study to get a bachelor’s degree. So, students are more prepared for further education and advanced programs.
Additionally, Canadian universities in some territories have planned articulation programs for students to pave the pathway to university. For instance, Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia province has signed an articulation agreement with notable research centers such as Humber College to transfer students.
- Lots of choices ahead of you
There are nearly 150 colleges in Canada that students can opt for. More interestingly, only about one-third of Canadian colleges are in Quebec. Other colleges are scattered in big provinces, including British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. A huge opportunity for ambitious students. So, variety is out there for any applicant.
- Smaller classes
Canadian community colleges are the best alternatives to traditional schools and training systems in terms of the number of students compared to state colleges. Moreover, research has shown a relationship between class size and student achievements. The Alberta Teachers’ Association has reported that smaller classes “provide better quality and a richer environment for pupils.”
- Keeping the budget up
As mentioned earlier in this post, you can work in Canada after graduation. If you are eligible for the post-graduation work permit, you can stay temporarily in Canada and find a well-paid job. Many students use this gap to save money until they apply to a university. So, this is a perfect time to earn money with your degree and prepare yourself for the next step.
- Minimum GPA
Some Canadian community colleges require students to maintain a minimum GPA. For instance, to graduate from Centennial College, you need to get a GPA of 2.0 or above. So, this minimum GPA policy in the Canadian educational system would provide an equal chance for every student to pursue their education.
- Financial support
Did you know that colleges pay out more funds to students than universities? For example, Vancouver Community College (VCC) grants non-repayable bursaries to students needing financial support. Also, it supports students with interest-free loans up to $4,000 under Canada Apprentice Loan (CAL) initiative. That’s a bonus for international students to cover their tuition fees and living expenses.
Final words on Canadian community colleges
Canadian community colleges are credited with many benefits such as minimum GPA, cheap tuition fees, and articulation agreements. These features make Canadian colleges a perfect destination for international students.