Study in the USA vs. Study in Canada
July 24th, 2020 by Al C

Study in the USA vs. Study in Canada

If you’re reading this then you must be interested in comparing Study in the USA vs. Study in Canada as an international student.

Well, you’re in the right place – because in this article we’ll cover some of the major benefits of studying in these countries.

So let’s dive right in with

Why you should consider studying in the US

Flexibility in deciding your major field of study

48 of the top 100 universities around the world are reported to be in the USA. One of the biggest factors that differentiates US colleges from other universities around the world is the flexibility in academic fields.

You are not usually required to decide your major until after your second year of study. Most students will use these two years to pursue different academic interests before they settle on a major. In most other nations, students are required to decide their field of study before they even apply.

A varied, general education

Most colleges in the U.S. require you to take general education or core courses.

These give you the opportunity to learn about a wide range of academic subjects – not just your major or concentrated research area. These “liberal arts” courses cover topics from writing to science.

Opportunities for internships & career prospects

You can get a head start on your career with an internship – which most US colleges offer. You can get hands-on experience and gain real-world exposure to your field, plus the chance of better-paid work after graduation because you already have some in-work experience.

Read more about working in the US

On-campus activities

U.S. colleges and universities are renowned for offering a huge variety of sports, clubs, societies and activities outside of the classroom. Whatever you’re interested in – you’ll find it on campus!

Diversity

Students from all over the world study in the US. When you’re one of them, you’ll have the ability to meet new people from different cultures every day, learn new languages, make friends and learn about other cultures.

Specialist International Student Assistance

Many schools have a dedicated office entirely devoted to helping their foreign students with any needs. They might assist you with improving your English, or dealing with visa problems , financial aid and even adapting to cultural differences in your new home.

One important thing to note with studying in the US is that it can be very expensive – significantly more expensive than many other countries around the world. you can learn more about how to fund your education in the US in this article:

Financial Aid for International Students in the USA

And you can find out if you are eligible for a loan:

You can also find International Scholarships.

Why you should consider studying in Canada

High Quality Education

A Canadian degree is just as valuable as a degree from the United States , Australia, or the United Kingdom.

Canadian universities perform well in international rankings, and Canadian Universities rank in the top 50 universities worldwide.

Whether you’re attending a university, college, or technical school, there’s no doubt that a Canadian education is a world-class education.

Economically Viable

For most students looking to study abroad, expense is the most significant barrier.

And while international students at Canadian universities do pay higher tuition fees than domestic students , the average annual tuition for a Canadian undergraduate degree for a foreign student is significantly lower than the United States, Australia, or the United Kingdom.

Foreign students also need to find housing and fund their daily life. Relative to many other top destinations for foreign students the cost of living in Canada is quite affordable. And when you add the average annual cost of living being lower than other countries with average annual tuition fees which are also lower, Canada seems like a very good opportunity, indeed.

Remember that loans for international students in Canada are also available if you need additional funding:

You can also find International Scholarships.

Work And Study

While Canada is a fairly affordable option in global terms, studying abroad is unquestionably costly.

Thankfully, foreign students in Canada are entitled to work up to 20 hours per week during school term time and full time (30 hours per week) during scheduled breaks such as vacations. Most students don’t need a work permit to work while they are studying.

Security

Personal safety is another big reason many students choose to come to Canada. It can be scary to study abroad, because you leave your family and friends – your safety net – in your home country. Canada was ranked 8th most peaceful nation in the world by the Institute for Economics & Peace. Canada’s location and relative isolation offers a bit of a buffer against most international disputes.

Canada has a freely-elected government, and Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects the basic rights and freedoms of people living in Canada. Canada’s reputation around the world is that of an inclusive and non-discriminatory country. Immigrants make up 20% of the entire population of Canada and Canadian laws ensure that all people are shielded from discrimination regardless of their circumstances.

Opportunities for Immigration

As an international student you usually get temporary status in the country where you study. When you graduate, you usually need to return home.

Unlike many countries, though, Canada has a number of programmes that enable the transfer of international students to permanent residence status after their studies. Options such as the Post-Graduation Work Permit allow students to stay and work after graduation on an unrestricted work permit, and give them the opportunity to gain some Canadian work experience. Most Canadian provinces have Provincial Nominee programs for applicants with experience studying or working in the province, and the points-based immigration system rewards Canadian work and study experience. About half of all international students consider applying for permanent residence in Canada after their studies end.

The Economy

Canada is one of the world’s biggest economies, and there are plenty of incentives for graduates to work. You have the ability to meet and network with leaders in your chosen field. And you can gain valuable experience working for industry-leading companies in Canada while you study, or after graduation.

If you want to return to your home country, your Canadian education and enhanced language skills in either English or French might provide global opportunities.

If you choose to live in Canada, Canadian employers appear to favour Canadian work experience over international work experience , so your student and work experience could make you stand out above other applicants!


So there you have it! Some great reasons why you might want to choose to study in the US or Canada! Let us know in the comments where you want to study!


Read more:

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What Coronavirus Means for Student Loans


How to Compare Student Loan Options
September 25th, 2016 by Lette Berhe

Compare International Student Loans

Have you already checked out our International Student Loan Comparison Tool, but realized that you weren’t exactly sure how to compare the results given? Deciding which loan is the right one for you can feel a little overwhelming, but here is a cheat sheet on how to compare your different loan options and choose the best one!

Now, before jumping into the loan jargon here are some basic questions you should ask yourself in order to compare loans efficiently:

⦁ Do I plan to work and study at the same time?
⦁ Do I want to get a Master’s?
⦁ Do I want to make loan payments while I am studying or begin repayment once I have graduated?

You may not have a clear answer for these question at the moment, but if you do these questions will you give you some extra insight on which loan conditions are right for you.

  1. Interest Rates: Variable or Fixed?
    Interest rates are the part of taking out a loan that everyone hates, so if you can get the best deal you’ll feel very satisfied. When you apply for a loan, you are asked if you want a variable or fixed interest rate and the distinction is very important.
    • Variable: A variable rate means exactly that, the interest rate on your loan varies and changes over time. This is considered somewhat of a gamble because if the economy changes, your interest rate can either decrease or increase.⦁
    • Fixed: Most people automatically go with a fixed interest rate because its stable and, therefore, stays the same as long as your loan exists. A fixed rate makes it easier for you to calculate your monthly payments, which in turn allows you to organize your finances. In essence, it gives you more control from day 1.
  2. Repayment Schedule
    When choosing the details of your repayment, is when the previous questions could come in handy. It is important to know if you have the option to defer (postpone) payments until after you have finished your studies or if you have to begin repayment as soon as you sign your name. Here are 3 of the most common repayment schedules and what they mean:
    • Standard Repayment: Standard repayment usually gives you a 10-year limit to pay off your loan. During those 10 years you have a fixed monthly amount, and the lender usually requires a minimum monthly payment.
    • Extended Repayment: Extended repayment is similar to standard repayment, in that you have fixed monthly payments. However, you have the option to pay back your loan between 12-30 years. This of course lowers your monthly payments, but it is important to remember that the lender will be charging you interest during this time. Although you may have lower monthly payments, more payments means more interest which means more money paid over time.
    • Graduated Repayment: With a graduated repayment schedule, the idea is that you start off paying a specific monthly payment and that this amount is readjusted (increases) every 2 years. The repayment timeline given is usually 12-30 years.
  3. Special Conditions and Additional Fees
    You may have heard the term deferment thrown around when talking about loans and you may know that it means postponing your loan payments. When taking out a private student loan you must be careful with the fine print. Although deferment exists, with private student loans it might be a little bit trickier. Many times, in the fine print is where you will find a multitude of hidden fees that can come back to haunt you later. Here are a few fees to keep an eye out for:
    • Deferment
    • Paying off your loan early
    • Penalties for late payments

For more information on what to take into consideration when choosing a loan check out our post ¨What International Student Loan is Right for Me?¨

 


STEM Students and the OPT Program at Risk
April 19th, 2016 by Lette Berhe

stem and optIn August 2015, the US federal court ruled against the validity of  the US Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) 2008 regulation update for the Optional Practical Training (OPT) program. However, the court gave the DHS until February 10,  2016,  to begin the implementation of necessary changes. In January 2016, the court extended the date for implementation until May 10, 2016. What does this really mean for internationals students? Let’s break it down.

What is Optional Practical Training?
Optional Practical Training, or OPT as it is commonly referred to, is a program that was created to provide international students with the opportunity to extend their visas to gain 1 year of US work experience in a professional setting that is directly related to their field of study. This work experience can be achieved either while they are completing their studies or post graduation. Read the rest of this entry »


How to File Taxes When You’ve Been Employed On Campus
April 1st, 2016 by Anum Yoon

taxesOne of the benefits of working an on-campus job when you’re an international student is that you get a great feel for the culture. You’ll make new friends, learn how things are done in the U.S. and earn some spending money.

Still, the most authentic experience you’ll have after working on campus is filing taxes with the rest of America. The tax forms, which need to be filed to the Internal Revenue Service by April 18, can be a little confusing even to people who have filed in the past. Here’s how to do it. Read the rest of this entry »


International Students Must File Taxes – Due April 18th!
March 11th, 2016 by Lette Berhe

taxTax season has already begun and many international students are not aware that they must file a US tax return as well – even if they’ve never earned any money in the US.  All students must file their US taxes on or before April 18, 2016. For most international students, this process will be easy and straightforward. Read on to see what you need to submit, as well as helpful resources in case you need assistance

Does Everyone Need to File?
As part of your visa requirements all international students are required to file taxes. The forms you will need to submit are dependent on whether you have made any income or not.

Regardless of whether you’ve earned income or not, all international students and their dependents must file Form 8843. If you are in the US with dependents, this form must be filed by your dependents independently (which includes a separate envelope!).

What is Eligible for Taxation?
If, as an international student, you have been receiving an income in the US, then you will need to pay taxes on it. Below are 3 common sources of income for international students:

  1. Wages from a job in the United States (on-campus, off-campus, OPT job)
  2. A scholarship from an American organization
  3. Interest made from an American bank account

For a complete list of what could be considered a potential income source be sure to check the IRS website. If you have received income in the last calendar year, you will also need to file Form 1040NR-EZ.

For more in-depth information regarding how to file your taxes and what forms you’ll need to submit, be sure to read the Student Tax Return page from InternationalStudent.com.


A 2016 Budget to Start the Year With Dollar Bills!
January 4th, 2016 by Lette Berhe

2016Now that many of you have experienced your first semester, or first few quarters, as an international student you probably have already established your routine. Although we all try our hardest to manage our finances, it is an ongoing process and there is always room for improvement. Now that you have figured out what works for you, it might be a good idea to create a new budget going into 2016, to save some dollars and cents where possible. Here are some tips on where to begin making some financial changes. Read the rest of this entry »


On-Campus Jobs for International Students
March 27th, 2015 by Lette Berhe

job imageThere may be those of you out there who have stayed on top of the application process and scholarship deadlines, but have also taken the time to determine what extra funds may be necessary apart from tuition. These extra funds can sometimes be crucial, due to the fact that most people underestimate what their daily living costs may actually be. It is always better to be prepared for unexpected expenses. The idea of spending an extended period of time in a foreign country and not having an influx of cash may be daunting, but you do have options. Although there are many international students who do not work during their time in the US, it is not impossible and could be a great option for those of of you who would like to make some extra cash.

What Qualifies as an On-Campus Job?
As an international student, when you are accepted into a university you are given a student visa (F1, J1, or M1). Attending a university with any of these three visas requires you to be a full-time student. As part of this requirement, you do not qualify for employment in the any US establishment. However, most campuses offer employment opportunities targeted at the student body, which also includes international students. Read the rest of this entry »


4 Tips to Land a Summer Job
July 16th, 2014 by Jennifer Frankel

Young couple relax on deck of sailing boat103585169Finding the perfect place to work this season begins with you, but to help you with your quest, we’ve put together 4 Tips to Land a Summer Job.

While most students are more concerned with getting a tan than boosting their resumes, you’re setting  yourself apart already, by considering the idea of a summer job. Even working part-time through the summer will guarantee a paycheck, and the extra experience may be just the boost you need to earn your dream job down the road. Read the rest of this entry »


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