Co-op Work Permit

Headshot of a Co-Op Management student in the Student Centre

One of the great things about the University of Toronto Scarborough is the Co-op program.

International students enrolled in the co-op program are required to have a Co-op Work Permit (COWP) before starting the work terms.

The COWP specifically allows you to work full-time during recognized co-op terms.

Your COWP will list “University of Toronto” as the employer and will allow you to work during co-op work terms for employers approved by your co-op program.

Never let your COWP expire during your co-op work term.

What You Need to Know - Co-op Work Permit

  • have a valid Study Permit
  • be registered in a Co-op program

COWP allows you to work full-time during co-op terms.

Co-op students during their work terms, may be eligible to work on and off campus, on top of their co-op work hours if they meet the eligibility requirements to work on and off-campus.

You may submit an application package by:

Applying online (offers faster processing time and more convenience);

If you apply online, you will answer a questionnaire, create a personal check list code, sign up/log into MYCIC account and automatically see a list of the required application forms and documents you have to provide.


Applying on paper

If you are applying on paper, make sure you complete the document checklist and include it with your application form and supporting documents. The instruction guide provides assistance with how to fill out the form and submit supporting documents.

Important documents for COWP application are:

  • Letter from the Co-op office confirming your enrollment in the program 
  • Valid passport and study permit

In addition to the documents listed, depending on your citizenship, you may have to provide additional information/documents when you apply for your COWP.

Apply at least 5 to 6 months before the COWP expiry date. Check the average processing time online. Processing times can vary, depending on how many applications CIC offices receive.

It does not include document mailing time.

When your application is approved, you will receive your COWP in mail at the address you provided on your application form.


  • Valid passport: If your passport is expiring within the next 6 months, renew it before applying for a study and work permit. Permits cannot be valid beyond the expiry date of the passport.
  • Valid Study permit: If your study permit is expiring soon, apply for your study permit extension and co-op work permit together using one application form (IMM5709)
  • Application form: Application to change conditions, extend my stay or remain in Canada as a worker (IMM5710)
  • UCI (if applicable): also known as “Client ID” appears on your study and work permit if you already have one. If not, leave it blank.
  • You do not need to have an employer or a job offer to apply for COWP
  • Details of my prospective employer:

Name of employer: University of Toronto Scarborough

Address of employer: Not Applicable

Job title: Co-op placement

Description of duties: Not Applicable

If you apply to your COWP before the expiry date, you have implied status as long as you remain in Canada. You may continue to work during your co-op work term until you receive your renewed COWP, even though the expiry date of your permit has passed while you are waiting to receive the new one.

Never let your COWP expire during your co-op work term.

It is illegal to start working before you receive your COWP.

COWP is different from off-campus work. You may simultaneously hold a co-op work permit and work off-campus if you meet the criteria for each. COWP cannot be used for off-campus work, volunteering, and internships out of the co-op program and employment after graduation.

If you drop out of the co-op program, you should no longer use your COWP for any type of employment.

Students who fail to comply with the terms and conditions of their work permit and do not stop working may be subject to enforcement actions taken by Canadian immigration authorities, or invalidation of their study and work permit. It may also negatively affect future immigration applications.

To work and get paid, in addition to a COWP, you need to have a SIN. You can apply for a SIN in person at the closest Service Canada Centre.