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From Kazakhstan to Canada: A College Admission Journey. A Case Study of a Mother and Daughter

From Kazakhstan to Canada: A College Admission Journey. A Case Study of a Mother and Daughter

Obtaining a Student Visa at 17 and at 52: A Unique Relocation Story

We met with our clients, Lazzat and Aisha, who traveled from Kazakhstan to Canada to study and obtain permanent residency. Lazzat, the mother, and Aisha, her daughter, both enrolled in university. Their story is unique and full of challenges, but they achieved their goal and are now living in Canada!

Pursuing education is a very promising way to stay in Canada permanently. It allows the entire family to move to Canada right away, and upon graduation, obtain a work permit and apply for permanent residency. After three years of living as a permanent resident, you will be eligible to request Canadian citizenship.

When Aisha received her student visa, she was 17 years old, and Lazzat was 52. If you think it's too late for you to immigrate or attend university, or if you want to come to Canada with your child, this story is for you!

The Story of Lazzat and Aisha

We met Lazzat and Aisha over two years ago. Lazzat booked a consultation with us to find out how they could move to Canada. Initially, the family considered moving Aisha to France for her studies, but the language requirements in France had significantly increased, so they started looking for other options. That’s how Lazzat learned about the possibility of moving to Canada.

“I thought I could travel with her because she was still 17 and my only child, naturally, I was worried,” Lazzat recalls.

Lazzat wanted to send Aisha to study while she found a job for herself. She even managed to get an interview with a Canadian company, but the main obstacle was that she wasn’t in Canada.

During our consultation, we explored various immigration options, but studying turned out to be the best route for both mother and daughter. Since Canada doesn’t consider a mother and an adult child as a family unit for immigration purposes, they had to apply for visas separately.

They submitted their documents in April 2022 and received decisions in October for Lazzat and in November for Aisha. They met in Canada in 2023.

The Study Process

Aisha enrolled in a two-year computer programming program that includes a paid internship. Lazzat enrolled in a one-year project management program.

Aside from tuition fees, they didn’t have to pay anything extra, and they have already received their first scholarships.

The study process in Canada is different from what many are used to. For example, students choose their schedules, there are mentors in college who help with everything, and the administration listens to the students. There are about 30 people in Lazzat and Aisha’s groups, all from different countries.

“Everything is explained quite well, clearly and understandably,” Aisha shared about the teaching in Canadian universities.

The women noted that their language skills have significantly improved thanks to their studies.

Moreover, the student visa allows them to work up to 20 hours a week. Lazzat and Aisha decided to focus on their studies for now, although some of their classmates are working.

The college has career consultants who can advise on starting a career in Canada, preparing a proper resume, and finding jobs. From the second semester, students can find part-time work within the university itself.

Studying in Canada Without a Language Test

To study in Canada, you need to prove your English proficiency. The university offered Lazzat and Aisha 12 weeks of training at the Canadian ILAC school, which has a special online English program for university admission—University Pathway. This program not only helps improve language skills but also prepares students for studying in Canada and allows them to enroll without taking a language test.

Meeting with clients

First Impressions and Adaptation

Many people are worried about possible questions from officers when crossing the border. Surprisingly, the women were questioned more in Frankfurt, where they had a layover, than in Canada. They needed to have their university admission letter, immigration approval letter, proof of funds, and medical exam results with them.

Before moving to Canada, Lazzat watched many videos about the country—both positive and negative. So, she didn’t have overly high expectations.

“When we arrived here, it turned out to be better than I expected,” Lazzat says.

Aisha also liked Toronto. Both women felt at home from the start. Aisha has already made friends with whom she attends classes and meets up after.

The family arrived in Canada three weeks before the start of their studies. They first got local SIM cards, opened a bank account, and received their Social Insurance Numbers (SIN). This took less than a week, but as it turned out later, they could have done this during a day the college set aside for international students, where they were informed about all necessary documents.

Renting an Apartment in Toronto

“When you get your visa and so on, you realize that’s just the beginning, and the most interesting part is yet to come,” Lazzat laughs.

A former colleague of Lazzat, who had already been living in Canada for a long time, recommended a realtor to them. They started searching for an apartment long before their flight and began direct communication with landlords a couple of months in advance. Most housing in Canada is rented unfurnished, but Lazzat and Aisha only considered furnished options.

Following the realtor’s advice, they wrote resumes about themselves, included photos and LinkedIn links, and stated how many months they could pay upfront since they didn't have a Canadian credit history. They also provided contacts for their acquaintances in Canada.

They then had to undergo an interview via video call with the landlords and their broker. There was competition for the apartment, but the landlords chose Lazzat and Aisha.

Now the family lives in a well-maintained area of Toronto close to the city center. The apartment is fully furnished, the building is new, and it has a free gym and pool. The neighborhood has many parks and all essential amenities nearby. The rent for such an apartment is $2,400 CAD per month.

Permanent Residency in Canada After Studying

Education in Canada opens additional pathways to obtaining permanent resident status. Aisha will study for two years and then receive a three-year work permit. During this time, she will gain Canadian work experience and can apply for permanent residency.

Lazzat’s program lasts one year, and she will receive a one-year work permit after her studies. This also allows for permanent residency, but she needs to gather and submit all necessary documents within that year. Therefore, she plans to enroll in another one-year program after completing the first. In total, two years of study will give her a three-year work permit, allowing her to apply for permanent residency without stress and hurry.

Help with Enrollment

We assist students with the entire process of moving to Canada, from choosing a study program to applying for a visa and arriving in Canada. After graduation, we help them apply for a work permit and then for permanent residency.

We recommend booking a consultation first to discuss your situation and assess your chances of getting a visa.

Ivanna Pavlenko, Canadian Licensed Immigration Consultant

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