Canadian universities criticize restrictions on student visas

Canadian universities criticize restrictions on student visas

Canada at the crossroads of educational immigration.

The future of international students in Canada is currently shrouded in uncertainty. The federal government has repeatedly hinted at a possible reduction in the number of student visas due to the current housing crisis, which is causing concern for both prospective students and universities.

Immigration Minister Marc Miller spoke out forcefully last December, promising to impose restrictions on study visas if provinces failed to deal with the crisis. Ontario, British Columbia and Nova Scotia were specifically mentioned as potential locations for implementing these restrictions.

"If provinces and territories cannot do this, we will do it for them, and they will not like the bluntness of the instruments that we use."

Miller's press service did not confirm that restrictions were imminent, but acknowledged that such an option was being considered. Questions about negotiations with the provinces remained unanswered.

University reactions

Employees of educational institutions are not thrilled with this news. Dale McCartney, associate professor at Fraser Valley University, wonders about the criteria for selecting students. He recalls that Canadian universities have not recruited students uncontrollably before, but this year, for the first time, a quota of 485,000 international students has been set for 2024. McCartney suggests that the restriction in some provinces will lead to an influx of students to other regions, increasing competition and pressure on them.

Changes in visa issuance policies can have a serious impact on the financial situation of educational institutions. Tuition fees may increase, causing anxiety among both prospective and current students. Some universities already fear for their own survival in the new conditions.

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