KPU Offers Online Courses To International Students for Summer Semester

Almost 400 international students started this term, says KPU International Interim Associate Vice President

(file photo)

As long as they received a student permit by March 18 and self-isolated for 14 days after their arrival in Canada, new international students will be accepted to KPU throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carole St. Laurent, KPU International’s Interim Associate Vice President, says there are international students taking KPU classes online, both in Canada and in their home countries.

“We still have a significant number of students. The numbers haven’t decreased at all for summer,” she says. “In fact, we had almost 400 international students starting the summer term.”

KPU staff sent international students a survey to assess their needs.

“We are asking to make sure that they have the equipment that’s necessary,” says St. Laurent. “We reached out to students prior to courses starting saying, ‘Do you have stable internet? Because if you don’t, we recommend you drop your courses.’”

The survey also asked students if they had access to a laptop, computer, or other device besides a cell phone.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has temporarily allowed international students to work more than 20 hours if they are a study permit holder in an academic session and if they are eligible to work off-campus. This change will be in effect until August 31.

IRCC has also adjusted their Post-Graduation Work Permit Program. Once international students complete their academic programs in Canada, they can apply for the PGWPP, which will then allow them to work in Canada for up to three years.

Before COVID-19, IRCC didn’t allow international students to apply for the PGWPP if they were taking online classes. This was altered so that international students can continue to take online classes and retain eligibility for the PGWPP from their home country.

KPU International has also been providing students with one-on-one academic and immigration advising during the pandemic.

“We have taken all the new international students and we divide them up amongst all of our advisors,” says St. Laurent. “They follow up with each and every new student to see how things are going.”

During these sessions, advisors make sure the students are able to access their online courses and communicate with their instructors.

“We realize that communication is essential to their success so we make sure that they know … they can reach out to us if they require any additional support,” says St. Laurent.

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