Studying in Canada for Permanent Residency (from the Philippines)

So you probably landed in this article for one main purpose - live in Canada and establish your life there. I know you will defy me and say "No, I plan on studying" or the like, but sister, I know what you're up to and I've been there.

Let's be honest here. We are planning on studying in Canada so it can serve as our gateway to Permanent Residency (PR), because one way or another we have subliminal problems with our country and are seeking for greener pastures, as they say. With no intention or ruining your plan whatsoever, if you really want to gain Canadian PR, studying is not the best option especially if you are 1) financially incapable, 2) never had a previous Bachelor's degree obtained locally and, 3) if you cannot speak, write, and comprehend in English well. But some of us though are lucky enough to realistically materialize this plan after careful planning and consideration.

Let me be clear first that I am no immigration consultant. I simply want to throw the reality of this "Study and Work" scheme out on you to see if it best suits your plan. And I, unlike those consultants I've booked appointments with, do my research thoroughly and never rely on outdated systems. Let me help you as much as I can by tipping some information that I hope wold be helpful.

1. The first thing I want to say is that if you really plan on carrying your study scheme in Canada, then please do yourself a favor and do not ever seek help from these study placement agencies, unless you absolutely need to. It is 100% unnecessary and EXPENSIVE. In my countless times of meeting face-to-face with these agencies, I have come to say that most of them provide very limited information and charge exorbitant amount of money for something you can actually do for yourself. All you need is a computer, internet, and to discharge your laziness when it comes to researching and exhausting all the information found in Google. If you really need to have someone else do it for you, may I suggest to consult with IDP. They have an office in Ortigas near Emerald Ave., if I'm not mistaken. They will not charge you for anything provided you apply to your school of choice through them. If you apply to the school by yourself then consult IDP afterwards, you will not get entertained anymore.

2. Know you're true purpose. Before even having Canadian PR in mind, my top priority in life was to pursue graduate studies and I never intended to pursue it locally because in my field, there are very limited resources and global perspective needed in carrying out advance studies here. Moreover, I am just dead tired of the incompetent nature of my field locally. But beyond this, I also wanted to pursue graduate school for professional development. My current work and my undergraduate degree both did not provide me with the competence I am seeking for and needed for professional maturity. And so my quest for the perfect grad school abroad preceded. It just so happened that the prospective programs I want are found in Canada, Melbourne, and in some places in Europe. This might be easier knowing that your true purpose was academic and professional advancement. It is hard to finish a program, be it a certificate or a degree, if your true (hidden) agenda is just to gain PR. And it is quite a saddening fact how education is now being taken for granted as gateway to immigration. Education should always be  for the benefit of the society and not for personal motives. In addition, this will make it easier when you are about to write your Statement of Purpose.

3. Most of us Filipinos fall into the trap of these study placement agencies. They will make you apply for certificate or diploma programs because they are cheaper and easier to manage, hence easier gateway to PR. But if you're not out of your mind just yet, rethink this option especially for Canada. You might get into a local school of your choice but once you get into the Canadian border, you will be questioned as to why you are pursuing a certificate/diploma course if you already have a Bachelor's degree. It might be good to know that private colleges in Canada are cheaper but won't entitle you to a Post-Grad Work Permit. A lot of our kababayan's actually got into trouble for this, and mind you, their agencies are the ones who pushed this upon them.

4. There is no such thing as "Show Money" :) A lot of people always ask how much money you need to show in applying for your student visa. Unfortunately my friend, you will actually need the money to study. It is not just for show. And nope, working the limited 20 hours part time would not be sufficient to cover costs of tuition, living, transport, food, and utilities. I live and study here in Toronto and boy is everything expensive. Unless you have a partner who will come to you in Canada with an Open Work Permit, then part-time working your way off will not cover most of it. Even half of it, maybe. The suggestion would always be to have a year's worth of tuition fee plus a year's worth of cost of living, which is always updated in CIC website. You can refer to that for the latest values.

5. Studying is not the only way to bump up your Express Entry Points. Being a lurker of the CIC website since 2014, I have come to conclude that having really sky-high IELTS score can push your points enough to be noticed by PNP, or even the EE system itself. Use their calculator to estimate if you REALLY need the Canadian experience to meet minimum points. Save your time and money by working a few more years in the Philippines and invest time to perfect your IELTS score. Having a partner would also help bump your score, but only to a tiny bit.

6. When it comes to Canadian employers, they do not really care much if you have Canadian education. What they look for is Canadian work experience. There is a lot of opportunities here in Canada, but there is always a subliminal criteria for hiring that no one will really know what. Some of them do not like to take the plunge on temporary work permit holders, which by the way is a category that PGWP falls under. But I assure you, with aggressive job hunting skills and really polishing your resume, it is not going to be extremely difficult to get employed in your field.

7. In choosing a program, as much as possible choose the co-op stream. This provides you enough opportunity to gain the "Canadian experience" that would help you when time comes you graduate. You will definitely have advantage over your other classmates who did not take any co-op. You would be surprised how a lot of domestic students who graduated from prestigious Canadian universities are actually taking community college programs to take advantage of the co-op.

For now, these are all that I can think of. I will update this as soon as time permits but should you have any question, please comment them and I will do my best effort to answer them (UNLESS they are information that is easily available online).


MAC Nutcracker Sweet Peach Face Compact

So I was given a MAC product as an early Christmas gift. I thought I might share what I think about the product with you very briefly.

 At first it seemed as if it was a joke - a counterfeit. The product is packed in a cheaply made plastic casing with embroidered cover. Upon opening the compact, I was surprised with how beautiful the colors of the highlighter and blush were. However, that was about it for me about this product.


NARS Matte Velvet Skin Tint (Frustrated) Review

Where do I even begin with this product?

NARS Matte Velvet Skin Tint

I cannot put into a coherent post my thoughts on this odd product. Well to start, I was looking into buying this after having watched this video by one of the most underrated (imho) beauty channels in Youtube - saaammage. If you watch Sam on Youtube, you probably know that she does a straight-to-the-point and superb job on reviewing and trying out foundations. What drew me into watching her was the fact that we agree on most products and use almost the same shades of foundations. It was through her channel that I discovered two of my favorite foundations to date - Revlon Colorstay Whipped Creme and Urban Decay Naked Skin. Wanting to try a sheer foundation and being one of my go-to reviewers, I saw her talk about the NARS Matte Velvet Skin Tint and had praises for it. So then I decided to visit this place that triggers my allergy with overpriced consumer items - Rustan's.