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5 Reasons To Study Your MBA In Canada

There’s more to Canada than maple syrup and moose—it’s also an enticing spot for international MBA students

While US schools suffer, Canadian business schools experienced a 16.4% surge in international applications over the last year, becoming a country of choice for a growing number of MBA candidates the world over.

To find out what makes Canada such an appealing study destination, we spoke to two international MBA students at the John Molson School of Business (JMSB), part of Concordia University in Montréal. 

Here’s five reasons why you should study your MBA in Canada:

1. Friendly visas


Studying abroad can mean mountains of paperwork, not to mention restrictive visa regulations. In Canada, though, things are a little easier for international students.

For Nick Zhao (pictured above), Canada presented a great opportunity to study abroad.

Originally from China, where he received his bachelor’s degree, Nick was keen to explore the wider world through an MBA. 

Nick is undertaking an MBA in Investment Management at JMSB, which also incorporates CFA accreditation training. Each year, students have the chance to complete a CFA level alongside their MBA assessments. By the end of the program, many students pass all three levels.

“Canada became my priority because it provides international students with a work permit right after we receive our degree,” Nick explains. “This really gives international students an advantage.” 

The work permit allows international graduates to stay in Canada and work for up to three years. While studying, overseas students can also work up to 20 hours per week during term, and full-time during vacations.

Nick is making the most of his visa flexibility this summer, undertaking an internship with an asset management firm in Montréal.

2. A thriving jobs market


In the last five years, more tech-related jobs were created in Toronto than San Francisco, and growth in this industry looks set to continue.

Sapandeep Randhawa (pictured above), an MBA student originally from India, was impressed by Canada’s burgeoning tech sector. 

“Montreal and Toronto have been gathering a lot of expertise in that area of work,” he observes. “A lot of companies have started to set up there, and move away from the US.

“There’s the potential for the market to grow even more.”

Tech isn’t the only area where Canada’s job market is thriving. At the beginning of 2019, a surge of private sector hiring created 66,800 new jobs across industries.


3. Work-life balance

Over two thirds (69%) of workers in Canada rated their work-life balance as ‘excellent’ or ‘good’ in a 2018 survey.

“The work culture here is very efficient,” Sapandeep agrees. “There’s no micromanagement, and the people are usually really nice.

“They want to help you, and they want you to grow—it’s a very beautiful way of dealing with other people.”

Nick shares Sapandeep’s appreciation for Canadian culture—both in and out of the office.

“I would like to keep building my experience in Canada and see where life takes me,” he says. “I have been living in Montréal for two years, and I like the city’s multi-cultural environment and bilingual vibe.” 

After graduation, Nick hopes to keep exploring Canada while honing his language skills—in both English and French.

4. Culture

Every year, half a million international students flock to Canada for college or university, and it’s not difficult to see why. Both Montréal and Ottawa regularly feature in some prestigious ‘best cities for student life’ ranking tables.

In 2018, Montréal was ranked number one by QS in their list of top cities for student experience. Students mentioned affordable living, great food, and a diverse population, (Montréal is home to over 50 nationalities), when explaining their choice.

“Canada is collaborative and open to international students,” Nick observes, “and Montréal is the second largest city in Canada, which makes it really attractive in terms of working opportunities.”

Sapandeep agrees: “I would definitely recommend Canada, especially for international students.”

5. Great return on investment

It’s no secret that MBAs are a costly qualification—especially in the USA. Across the border, though, things become much more affordable.

Whereas some US MBA programs cost upwards of $100,000, a general MBA from JMSB costs $23,750 for international students, and just $4,425 for residents of Quebec.

The MBA in investment management costs $61,000 for international students, and scholarships are available to help cover the cost.

Not only do Canadian prices make  MBA programs much more accessible, they also add up to a healthy return on investment.

In 2019, the average MBA holder in Canada can expect a base salary of just under $100,000—higher than comparative salaries in France, Australia, and the UK.

“Quebec is good value for money,” Sapandeep observes. “It makes a lot of difference for international students.”

Both Sapandeep and Nick say they’re hoping to stay in Canada after they’ve graduated, and continue to explore everything the second largest country in the world has to offer.

Student Reviews

Concordia University: John Molson School of Business




On Campus

Educational advancement

My time at Concordia College has been set apart by huge self-awareness. The steady instructors and staff have assisted me with fostering my abilities and information. The college offers a scope of administrations and extracurricular exercises, giving various open doors to understudies to reach out. In general, my involvement with Concordia has been positive and improving.




On Campus

My growth

"My time at Concordia University has been marked by significant personal growth. The supportive teachers and staff have helped me to develop my skills and knowledge. The university offers a range of services and extracurricular activities, providing numerous opportunities for students to get involved. Overall, my experience at Concordia has been positive and enriching.




On Campus

Communications and Culture Studies

I am currently enrolled in my first year in the Communication and Culture studies program. I have met so many incredible people and have already acquired skills that I will serve me in my professional career. The courses are dynamic, engaging and intellectually stimulating. I am happy to be a student at this university and look forward to the next 2 years here!




On Campus

Significant advancements

Having attended Concordia University, I can confidently state that I have seen significant advancements in my skills. The faculty and staff demonstrate great thoughtfulness and provide effective support. Additionally, the university offers an abundance of student clubs and services.




On Campus

Master of Quality Systems Engineering

I completed my Master's in Quality Systems Engineering at Concordia University, where I gained a comprehensive understanding of quality management principles and methodologies. The program provided a mix of theoretical knowledge and practical applications, including coursework in statistical process control, Six Sigma, and Lean principles. I engaged in hands-on projects addressing real-world quality challenges, collaborated with experienced faculty, and conducted independent research. This experience has equipped me with the skills and expertise needed to contribute effectively to organizations seeking to enhance their quality control processes and achieve operational excellence.

Amber Lee



On Campus


The Communication program at Concordia University will prepare you for the future. The program is divided in two blocks: one more theoretical, from which you learn the concept of communications through the perspective of philosophy, history and social studies; another completely hands-on in which you learn how to produce media choosing from three streams; sound, moving images, intermedia. What I love about the communication program at Concordia is that the teachers are clever, up to date, and exited about putting the future in the hands of students. Not only there is so much to learn in the communication program, but there are also so many opportunities!




On Campus

Concordia is best

Concordia university is one of the top listed universities not just in Canada but worldwide. The most amazing thing about this university is it is a standalone English speaking university in Montreal that allows non francophone students to enrol and study efficiently. My program is beautifully designed with access to high quality classrooms and faculty members that are available every time to attend your queries. The huge campus of the University including the library allows students to indulge in group work and research programs. The administration staff is super supportive and polite in their conversations. I have had the most amazing experience studying at Concordia so far.




On Campus

Entrepreneurship and Marketing

I had the privilege of being a part of Ryerson University's Entrepreneurship and Marketing program, and it was an outstanding experience. The program's curriculum was well-designed, providing a perfect balance of theoretical knowledge and hands-on practical application. The faculty members were highly knowledgeable and supportive, creating an engaging learning environment. The program's emphasis on industry connections and experiential learning opened doors to valuable internships and co-op opportunities. The resources and facilities dedicated to the program were top-notch, allowing me to explore my passion and excel in my studies. I am grateful for the real-world skills and industry connections I gained through the program. Ryerson University's Entrepreneurship and Marketing truly prepared me for a successful career in the business world. I highly recommend this program to anyone looking for a transformative educational experience.





Integrated Student Life

Concordia University has done a fantastic job at providing on-campus activities and workshops for students to feel connected and less lonely in stressful times. My program, Human Relations highlights this perfectly as a human relations student to be able to see the effects these workshops have on our beings and our mental and physical health as well. The student Life at Concordia has allowed our school to feel more like a community than a school.




On Campus

Study review

As a graduate student in the doctoral program in chemical engineering at Concordia University, I would rate the program as highly commendable. Although, the academic experience has been rigorous, challenging, and intellectually stimulating, providing a comprehensive and in-depth understanding of chemical engineering principles. However, my ongoing program has been equally rewarding and has equipped me with the skills and knowledge needed for a successful career in academia and industry.




On Campus


In general, I love my university. It's a true representation of diversity, with students from all around the world. The system is incredibly organized, with everything functioning seamlessly, from the structure to the services.




On Campus

Great range of classes - Political Science program

- I would definitely recommend this university. Concordia offers a great range of various classes for Political Science program. Offered courses are interesting and well-taught. - My campus is located in downtown, and I have no problem to drive there and park, as university offers two big parkings for students - Teachers are nice and comprehensive. If students obtain a bad grade, there is always a possibility to discuss and do something with that - University has an amazing student life. There are various help-centers and crews who are always willing to help students