Canadian college ‘shatters’ Punjab students’ dreams

Tribune News Service

Avneet Kaur

Jalandhar, August 8

An “abrupt decision” taken by Canada’s Northern College, Scarborough campus, has thrown the plans of numerous Indian students, many of whom hail from Punjab, into disarray.

Just a month before the anticipated September session, the college cancelled admissions, leaving the students in a limbo. They had already invested in accommodation, purchased air tickets and readied themselves for their upcoming journey to Canada. The reason cited is the overwhelming number of applications received by the institution.

Sunil, who handles Canada student visa cases at Pyramid e-Services, an immigration firm in Jalandhar, said the college had received an unusually high response. “The college issued more offer letters than available seats under the assumption that not all students would receive embassy clearance and visas. However, the rejection rate turned out to be significantly lower this time, forcing the college to cancel admissions,” he said.

He said the college tried to address the situation by promising to refund 100 per cent of the fees to students. Additionally, they offered students the option to secure offer letters from other colleges, with the possibility of transferring the same fees to the chosen institute.

Harmanjot Singh, a student from Kapurthala who had applied for a two-year business diploma at Northern College, said he had already made preparations, including booking a non-refundable ticket worth Rs 1.12 lakh for an August 29 departure. However, the last-minute decision of the college left him and others in a shock. He received an email informing him of the lack of availability of seats in the college.

Besides affecting the students, the cancellation of admissions has sparked concerns within the Sikh community in Canada. Various advocacy groups, including the World Sikh Organisation of Canada, have raised their voices against the action of the college and have called for reconsideration of the decision.

Parents of affected students have also highlighted the logistic and financial hardships faced by them.

Had bought tickets, hired accommodation

  • Just a month before the anticipated September session, the college cancelled admissions, leaving the students in a limbo
  • They had already invested a lot of money in accommodation, air tickets and had readied themselves for their journey to Canada


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