Schools Training

Canada Welcomes More Foreign Students

8 MAR 2012
Topic : Education News

New data from Citizenship and Immigration Canada indicates that the number of new temporary foreign students in Canada reached 98,378 in 2011. This total is an increase on the 95,236 enrolled in Canadian schools in 2010 and a massive jump on the 73,777 registered in 2007. (Note, this figure refers to the number of individuals entering Canada as initial entries or re-entries).

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In all, 239,131 temporary foreign students were present on December 1st, which again, represents a significant jump on figures from 2010 (218,112) and 2007 (175,690). Unsurprisingly, the 3 provinces with the highest proportion were Ontario (96,808), BC (66,556) and Quebec (33,697).

These numbers should probably not be too surprising. After all, Canada continues to welcome large number of immigrants, with another 248,660 permanent residents added to the fold in 2011 (keep in mind that this is actually on the low end of the government’s planning range of 240,000 to 265,000 new permanent residents for the year). The country, in fact, has averaged about  a quarter of a million immigrants annually since 2006, which represents the highest sustained level of immigration in Canadian history.

“Canada’s per-capita immigration rate remains one of the highest in the world,” said Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney. “Immigration has always been a sustaining feature of Canada’s history and continues to play an important role in building our country.”

It should go without saying that universities and businesses are behind a lot of this too, as recruitment for international students and talented employees is heating up across the country, with schools now also focusing on how to retain this talent. In fact, a recent conference, entitled Retaining Global Talent, was recently hosted at the University of Calgary.

“We want and need to attract foreign students and encourage them to stay in Canada,” said Dr. Eva Klein, organizer of the conference hosted at the University of Calgary. “They have Canadian degrees and Canadian experience and are therefore the ideal immigrant population.”

No doubt this will likely become a big issue for Canadian schools going forward.

What do you think?