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Training and research interns


Foreign nationals are only eligible to enter Canada if they are fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved for entry into Canada.

Moreover, training or research interns are required to be adequately protected against COVID-19 to access a health and social services establishment or a research centre adjacent to such an establishment for the purpose of their internship in Quebec.

Québec protection standards and vaccines approved by Canada may differ. Interns are responsible to ensure their vaccines meet the requirements for Canada and for Québec.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the invitation and immigration procedures for training and research interns have changed. Please see the COVID-19 page for foreign workers and interns.

Have you been invited to Université Laval as a foreign training or research intern?

Canadian immigration considers you to be a foreign worker even if you are unpaid and the internship is part of your studies.

To be invited, you must be eligible for status at Université Laval and hold an authorization to work from Canadian immigration. If you have an open work permit, notify the person inviting you.

Foreign workers are responsible for their immigration procedures, for respecting the conditions of their invitation and work authorization , and for obtaining and extending their Canadian work permit as required. If their working conditions change, a new invitation letter and work permit may be required.

Eligibility and invitation

You must be eligible for training or research intern status and be invited by a professor at Université Laval.

PLEASE NOTE: Training or research intern status cannot be extended beyond 12 months. If you plan to stay longer, please consider another mobility option from the start (e.g., cotutelle programs, regular enrolment, etc.).

Valid passport

You must have a passport that will be valid more than three months after the end of your stay. The dates of your stay and your immigration documents cannot extend beyond your passport’s expiry date.

Processing time

Start the procedures as early as 6 months in advance to allow sufficient time for immigration processing.

Invitation letter and internship agreement

You will need an invitation letter for your stay and a signed internship agreement. The letter will indicate the type of work authorization you require and the conditions of your stay. This letter is essential for your immigration procedures and your entry into Canada. An internship agreement is not required for exchange students.

Immigration procedure

For training and research interns, there are 4 possible immigration work authorizations:

Work permit exemptions – for fully vaccinated persons only

  • For academic research for a maximum of 120 consecutive days (without teaching). Important: if your stay is likely to last more than 120 days, you must apply for a work permit (where possible) 
  • For short-term visiting students in a foreign health care program (clinical or practical internship)

LMIA-exempt work permits

  • For academic research award recipients
  • For an International Co-op Internship through International Experience Canada

Apply for the work authorization indicated in your invitation letter by following the corresponding instructions below.

If you are unsure, contact the Faculty contact person at Université Laval (PDF in French only).

In the event of a refusal

It may happen that a work permit or visa application is refused. Should this occur, you can contact the faculty contact person at Université Laval (PDF in French only): this person will assess your file with an immigration counsellor.

If you are advised to file a new application for a work permit, be sure to obtain a new invitation letter with a new LMIA-exempt job offer number.

Plane ticket

Important: If you require a visa and/or a work permit, you must wait until you receive your visa and/or approval for your work permit as well as all the documents required for entering Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic before you book your flight.

In all cases, wait until you have all the documents necessary for entry into Canada (see the list in the “Going through Canadian customs” section as well as the documents required for entering Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic) before booking your flight, making your travel arrangements and coming to Canada.

If necessary for administrative purposes, arrive a few days before the start of your stay at Université Laval.

Arrangements for your stay

For suggestions on accommodation and practical tips for your stay, see the section on Living in Québec City in the section for International Students on the Bureau de la vie étudiante (Student Life Office) webpage. Even though you don’t have access to BVE services as a foreign worker, some of the information will be useful.

Going through Canadian customs

IMPORTANT: In addition to the documents required for your situation (work permit exemption or work permit), you must provide all documents related to the COVID-19 pandemic, listed in the procedure (French only) and on this page.

Social insurance number (SIN)

You must have a social insurance number (SIN) to receive a salary or scholarship (grant) from Université Laval or another Canadian employer.

You can go to the nearest Service Canada office to request a SIN (once you have completed your mandatory quarantine, if required). To do so, you must make an appointment online first and bring your passport and original work permit.

Health and hospitalization insurance

Once enrolled, foreign interns are automatically covered by Université Laval’s group health and hospitalization insurance plan for foreign students and interns. This insurance currently costs $75 per month. Click here for more information on this insurance.

This insurance is mandatory and therefore no personal insurance can replace it.

Foreign students and research interns eligible for Régie de l'assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ), in particular through a social security agreement with Québec, may be exempted from joining the compulsory health and hospitalization insurance plan if they take the necessary steps within the prescribed time limits.

If you have family members with you, make sure they have adequate health insurance coverage, as the Université Laval's group health insurance plan for foreign students and interns does not offer family coverage.

Depending on your personal or family needs, take out complementary private insurance of your choice.

If you have any questions about insurance, send an email to


Extending your work permit

If necessary, extend your work permit.

Work permit exemptions (such as those for university research stays of 120 days or less and health care students in clinical or practical internships) cannot be extended.

For more information

Depending on where you are, you can refer to the following resources:

Outside Canada:

Inside Canada:

If necessary, you can submit your question to your faculty contact person at Université Laval.

This website is intended to provide general information on current procedures, which may change at any time without notice. Québec and Canada laws and regulations in effect as well as the websites of the Ministère de l'Immigration, de la Francisation et de l'Inclusion (MIFI) and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) take precedence over this website.
This page was last updated on: 2022-05-26