National News

November 2, 2011

Canadian Experience Class brings the world's best and brightest to Canada

cec

Ottawa, November 2, 2011 — Following a substantial increase in the number of student visas issued in recent years, Canada has welcomed its 10,000th permanent resident through the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) immigration stream, Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney announced today.

The CEC, created in 2008, offers a pathway to permanent residency for international students and skilled and highly skilled temporary foreign workers. Through the CEC, those eligible can apply from within Canada and expect a decision quickly, whereas in the past, they may have spent several years waiting in the immigration queue.

The CEC is one of the Government of Canada’s most recent innovations aimed at ensuring Canada retains talented and motivated individuals who have demonstrated a strong work ethic, have an ability to contribute to the economy, and will easily integrate into Canadian life.

The Minister was joined at the announcement by Goomaral (Maral) Chukhalkhuu, originally from Mongolia , who was recognized as the 10,000th CEC permanent resident. Ms. Chukhalkhuu earned an Honours Bachelor’s degree in International Business from Carleton University , and then put her skills to work at a bank in Ottawa . “As a student, I fell in love with this country,” said Ms. Chukhalkhuu, a Small Business Account Manager at RBC. “I knew I wanted to stay here and become a part of this wonderful country and the CEC offered me that opportunity.” “Maral is a perfect example of a bright, young newcomer who has studied and gained work experience in Canada, and is now using that experience to contribute to our country,” the Minister said.

The CEC has received praise from many educational organizations across the country, such as the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC). "International student graduates are armed with the advanced skills employers need and move directly into employment in communities across the country. This is the real value of the Canadian Experience Class," said James Knight, ACCC President and CEO.

The federal government’s vision to ensure Canada benefits from the attraction and retention of international students is reflected in the $10 million, two-year commitment made in Budget 2011 towards developing and implementing an international education strategy.

This strategy will promote Canada ’s reputation as one of the top countries to study and conduct world-class research. Innovative colleges and universities are key partners in developing a diverse, skilled, and internationally focused workforce. Retaining international PhD students will also be easier, thanks to a new initiative announced today by Minister of State (Science and Technology) Gary Goodyear.

Minister Goodyear joined Minister Kenney to announce that foreign nationals studying at a doctoral level in Canada , as well as recent graduates of a Canadian PhD program, will soon be able to apply as Federal Skilled Workers. “Doctoral graduates play a unique role in the economy,” said Minister Goodyear, “They drive research, encourage innovation, and pass along knowledge through teaching.” Minister Kenney concluded by saying: “The CEC and the PhD initiative represent what we hope is the future of immigration to Canada: bright young people who have a Canadian education or work experience that will be recognized by Canadian employers, and who have strong English or French language skills. Such newcomers are set for success.”

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