Why apply to MS in Canada?
1. H1B and green card uncertainty in USA due to Trump policies
Trump has hinted that he does not like immigrants (which is the intention of 90%+ internationals who go for MS in USA), H1B caps and OPT rules are constantly under scrutiny and green card processing takes forever.
In comparison, you easily get work permit upon graduation in Canada for 2-4 years in any field to work anywhere you want. The study permit itself allows for taking jobs off campus right from the beginning. Within this time frame, you can easily get your permanent residency. Therefore, studying from Canada means not only getting higher education but a hassle-free option of settling in Canada.
2. The high quality of living and curriculum
Canada’s political stability, tolerant government, super healthcare, natural beauty lends itself to the wonderful quality of living in a peaceful environment. Yes, winters might be an issue for some people.
I saw the ultimate reward of being in Canada in our alumnus’ Rafi’s response –
“I used to weigh 120+ kg in India and had multiple health issues. After coming to Canada and seeing the fitness of people around me, it made me work hard to become healthy myself. Today I weigh 70 kg and have learned swimming and skiing. I love it here.”
While Canada may have a fewer number of schools than the USA, most of them are comparable in quality of coursework and research to the top tier schools of USA.
3. Not so bad job opportunities
Plus, for all the health and wellness benefits it offers, the job scenario is also not bad (we are talking about engineering fields for this post). There are increasing opportunities in growing fields such as Data Science. Plus, most of the bigger tech companies are opening offices in Canada if not already.
In terms of the cost of attendance and living, it may be akin to the USA in total. However, financial aid opportunities seem to be abundant in good Canadian universities.
So, where is the catch?
As is the case we discussed in MS in Germany blog post, downsides of studying in Canada are:
1. Lower job packages
While it is not unheard of to get $100K USD+ packages in the USA in software and technology along with handsome relocation bonuses, Canadian offers are lower with little bonuses.
2. Lower possibilities of working in the USA
It is hard to get placement in US offices from Canada. So, if you graduate from Canada, you are best positioned to work in Canada only. I still believe that the USA offers the best job market and growth opportunities in most of the engineering fields.
To summarize, those looking for long-term settlement, relocation to a foreign country and peaceful living, Canada offers you a wonderful opportunity. But if you are studying abroad to earn as much as possible and might want to come back to India, USA is still a better bet.
The comparison is more clear from this interview with Rafi Alam. He shares insights about studying and working in Canada.
Hear it from someone who pursued CS from Waterloo
That’s it, hope it helps you make a more informed choice for your study abroad plans!
We have now covered MS in Germany and MS in Canada. Which other country are you considering and would like to know more about?