Tuesday, November 16, 2004

foreign students to be allowed to work off campus

I have to admit. I'm almost always frustrated with the way liberal media treats any issue, even if the cause is quite worthy.
Say, for example, today's Globe and Mail article about the on campus only restriction imposed on foreign students in Canada.

The article presents a solid case why they should be lifted. Of course, it has all the obligatory liberal reference points:
- slight nationalism (Canada could loose an edge in attracting foreign students)
- appeal to social justice (under the current only affluent students can afford to study in Canada)
- a touching personal story (a foreign student who is lucky to get a job on campus but says it is tough anyway)

It's not that I dispute these arguments. I find them kinda dull but heck, what about the main issue that is left absolutely unaddressed. Why are those restirctions there in the first place? Well, because there is a danger that some will try to get into Canada only to get a job here rather then to study. Again, I don't profess to know whether that would be a valid concern at all, but hey it could be mentioned at least in passing.

Secondly, under the current system foreign students obtain student authorizations that allow them to stay in Canada for the duration of their studies. Right now, it's possible to obtain student authorization for the entire period of your program. Say, if it's a Ph.D. program that lasts five years you can get it for five years too.

However, I strongly suspect that once restrictions on the off-campus work are lifted you will be no longer elibigle to obtain student authorization for more than a year. And believe me, it's a ardious and challenging procedure that costs money.
I'm not so sure that the tradoff will be so great.


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