British Columbia is introducing three new International Graduate PNP streams next year

Vimal Sivakumar
Published: June 25, 2024

Three streams will be open to eligible recent graduates from Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctorate programs in British Columbia (B.C.) in 2025.

In January 2025, the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) is set to introduce the following three new Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) streams for international graduates.

  • Bachelor’s stream
  • Master’s stream
  • Doctorate stream

Note: International graduates are students who have obtained a degree, diploma or certificate from an eligible post-secondary institution in Canada within the last three years. See below for full details regarding the eligibility criteria for the BCPNP’s International Graduate stream.

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These streams aim to create clearer pathways for international graduates to obtain Canadian permanent residence (PR) and improve their employment prospects across British Columbia.

What has British Columbia revealed about the new streams so far?

Thus far, the provincial government in B.C. has outlined the following details about the new streams its PNP will introduce in 2025.

  • Launch date: January 2025
  • Updated language requirement: Each of the new streams will require a minimum of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 8
  • Graduates of diploma and certificate programs will not be eligible for these new streams but may still be eligible for other BCPNP pathways

The following will outline what B.C. has released to date, about the eligibility criteria, features and benefits of each upcoming stream.

Note: B.C. has also revealed that more information about these streams, including more detailed criteria for each new stream, will be available in late 2024. The province notes that “when the new graduate streams are launched, an updated edition of the BC PNP Skills Immigration Program Guide will be published with complete stream criteria.”

Bachelor’s stream

  • For recent graduates with Bachelor’s degrees from eligible post-secondary institutions
  • Eligible graduates must have an eligible, full-time, indeterminate (without a declared end date) job offer

Master’s stream

  • For recent graduates with Master’s degrees (in any field of study) from eligible post-secondary institutions
  • Graduates must have a full-time job offer (lasting at least one year) in a skilled occupation

Doctorate stream

  • For “graduates and [PhD] candidates of doctoral level programs” from eligible post-secondary institutions

Other important details about the three new BCPNP streams

Job offer* restrictions: The three new BCPNP streams outlined above “will not be limited to a list of eligible occupations.”

*B.C. clarifies that, although job offers will not be limited, offers of employment are still required to meet the criteria for B.C.’s three new streams.

Approved program restrictions: B.C.’s three new streams will not include a list of approved programs, meaning that “recent graduates from degree programs in any field of study may be eligible for the new student streams” as long as they meet the required criteria.

Competition for Invitations to Apply (ITAs): The B.C. government clarifies that, because there are individual streams for eligible candidates with each type of credential (Bachelor’s, Master’s, Doctorate), there will be no competition between students with different credentials for ITAs. In other words, “Bachelor's stream applicants will [only] be considered alongside other” applicants with a Bachelor's degree.

Am I eligible for B.C.’s International Graduate stream?

Although each of the new streams will also have unique eligibility criteria, the following will outline general eligibility criteria for all BCPNP International Graduate streams.

To qualify through B.C.’s International Graduate stream, candidates must:

  • Have obtained a degree, diploma or certificate from an eligible Canadian post-secondary institution within the last three years
  • Have accepted a qualifying full-time job offer from an employer* in B.C.
  • Be qualified to work in their chosen occupation in B.C.
  • Have a wage offer “in line with B.C. wage rates for the job they will be working
  • Prove the ability to support themselves and any eligible dependents
  • Meet minimum language requirements
    • UPDATE: B.C. recently raised the minimum language requirement for all BCPNP streams except its Health Authority stream (which was already previously adjusted)

*The employer must “agree to support [the candidate’s] application while themselves meeting certain Employer-focused requirements.

Important details about Skills Immigration in British Columbia

Skills immigration, which includes the BCPNP, uses a points-based system to rank and select eligible immigration candidates. Candidates who receive an ITA through the BCPNP have 30 calendar days to submit their application to the province.

Note: Once an applicant submits their application, they must pay the application fee and submit all required documents.

The BCPNP scores candidates, through its points system, based on human capital and economic factors. Human capital factors include related work experience and proficiency in Canada’s official languages (English, French). Meanwhile, economic factors include the wage of the candidate’s B.C. job offer and the candidate’s employment location in B.C.

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