Yes you can take your Family with You!
MBA in Canada with Family
Canada follows US and UK as a popular destination for students who want to pursue higher education. Unlike the US, which has always occupied the no.1 spot, Canada has seen new heights in popularity in the last decade or so. This could be attributed to universities competing globally, student friendly cities, and a healthy, organized lifestyle on offer. Further, considering that many students are rethinking their plans of moving to the US because of immigration laws (though they shouldn’t), MBA in Canada with family looks more attractive than ever. Canada as a nation has always been friendly, welcoming immigrants with open arms, and in fact, is one of the few developed nations where seeking and obtaining a PR (Permanent Residency) is still a good possibility. For the year 2016, Canada holds the second position in a ranking of countries by their perceived image. Given all these factors, the number of Indians wanting to apply to top Canadian MBA programs is on the rise.
Top MBA Programs in Canada:
The Schulich School of Business, York University in Toronto is among the best that Canada offers in terms of a Business School. The popular economic magazines, Forbes and The Economist, rank them number one and probably, therefore, the school welcomes many international students each year. Their MBA program combines classroom learning with real-world experiences through various projects which are accomplished in collaboration with real clients. J.P. Del Carmel, Manager General Mills, completed his MBA degree in 2016. He believes that his colleagues at the University who were driven and passionate helped him to excel in Academics. His experience at the University provided the right foundation for his current flourishing career in Marketing at General Mills.
Ivey Business School in Western Ontario, Canada offers a unique 1-year MBA course which is designed to attract those who want to pursue higher education to hone their leadership skills. They use case-studies extensively as their methodology of teaching. Ivey has been rated as the number one school in Canada in Bloomberg Business Week’s International MBA rankings three years in a row. Michael Liebrock, Co-founder of Acasta Enterprises, quotes the case study methodology as the reason he excelled at his workplace. He says it was the reason he could solve genuine business problems that he faced on daily basis.
Accommodation is one of the factors that students consider while pursuing education away from home. While it is a relevant factor, it is not worth agonizing over because accommodation is abundant in areas around universities and colleges. The schools themselves will provide students with all the information through their international centers so they can make the choice that suits them the best.
There are several options available for prospective students and some of the most popular living options to consider:
- House Stays: Staying with families that open their homes to students traveling to Canada. If you prefer a family-style living option, this one is for you. There are several websites which offer such services after an adequate screening of such hosts. The home will not only provide basic amenities but the food is taken care of as well. One such portal is “Canadahomestaynetwork”. For instance, Jorge Sosa who was traveling out of Mexico for the first time found comfort in a beautiful home for the 6 months that he spent in the city on a student exchange program.
- Dormitory: This is a convenient living option for students traveling to Canada. Most universities provide accommodation options both on-campus and off-campus. While on-campus accommodations may be limited, they are generally sufficient to accommodate the incoming students, especially the new entrants. On-campus living options will generally consist of large houses with shared areas for entertainment, cooking, and bathrooms. These dormitories are usually offered to first-year college or university students to help them ease into living in a new place.
- Off-campus accommodations will mean townhouses generally capable of housing up to 6 students who will share the same. These are generally located near the campus and are offered for second year or final year students.
- Renting on your own: There is always the option of renting a studio or a townhouse and this works very well when you are familiar with the city. This will provide you with a wonderful off-campus living experience and you can share the accommodation with friends to reduce your overall expenses.
Compared to other popular destinations such as the US and UK, educational institutions in Canada are more affordable. You will be spending anything between 20,000 CAD to 40,000 CAD on tuition fees alone. Housing, insurance, and living expenses will add another 30,000- 40,000 CAD to the above estimates. This is almost 20,000-30,000 dollars lesser than you will spend in the US. Considering that as a student, you may get scholarships, part-time working opportunities (of up to 20 hours without a permit) within the campus and cheaper accommodations vide dormitories, these expenses may come down a bit. Further, a more accurate picture of the expense will depend on the university chosen, its location, and the program opted for.
Many are preferring to study MBA in Canada with family based purely on cost. For instance, take the case of Maddie Zeif, a student from Vermont who decided that it was better to go to the University of Colombia since it was more cost-efficient than in the US. She says that the average cost of getting an MBA degree from any university in the US is quite high and hence decided to move.
Working options for Spouse:
Canada has always been a great supporter of family reunification, and in keeping with the idea, it allows your spouse or dependent children (under the age of 19) to stay with you during your tenure of education. The permit allows your spouse to work while you earn your degree without an LMIA (Labor Market Impact Assessment). Once you are granted a work permit after your education, your spouse’s permit can be renewed quite conveniently. However, there are certain pre-conditions for it
- Your spouse must apply for the temporary work permit before you arrive in the country. This means that you should have been accepted by a company or employer.
- Your spouse’s work visa will be valid for as long as your student visa is valid.
- This work permit will allow your spouse to work for any employer in Canada.
- There are several job opportunities available for your spouse and a good place to start is the University where you will be studying. Typically, universities have international centers which can provide assistance in this regard.
Schooling Options for dependent children:
Intending to do an MBA in Canada with Family can be daunting especially if you are unsure about the educational system in Canada. The PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) system has concluded after a study that Canadian teenagers are amongst the best educated in the world, moving ahead of those in the US and several other countries.
Elizabeth Sawyer, CEO of School Placement Worldwide says that while there is no single national curriculum, the language of instruction is commonly the major point of concern. In Montreal, French is used as a medium of instruction but most other parts of the country use English. So, decisions should be based on factors that will allow an easy transition for children.
As the multi-cultural society that it is, Canada is increasingly becoming popular for international students. Considering that Indian students make considerable contributions financially and intellectually, institutions are welcoming them with open arms. The day is not far when Canada will challenge the US’s position as an educational hub for international applications wishing to immigrate.