Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


William Benet


About 35% of the Canadian labor market is made up of highly skilled immigrants, yet they have the highest unemployment rates. This study filled a gap in knowledge related to reasons Caribbean credentials are not more widely recognized and accepted in Canada and why their skills and qualifications are nontransferable. The purpose of this qualitive research was to identify the barriers to the successful integration of Caribbean immigrants into the Canadian job market and to obtain strategies to remove them. The theoretical framework that underpinned this study was Rawls Social Justice theory. Data were collected through semi structured interviews with 15 participants. Data were analyzed using both manual coding and qualitative analysis software. The results of the study revealed that the barriers to the recognition of Caribbean credentials include (a) lack of awareness of Caribbean universities by employers, (b) lack of Canadian work experience, (c) perception of the quality of the degree, (d) racism and discrimination, and (e) lack of requirements of regulated professions. The strategies identified include raising the profile of Caribbean universities, developing a memorandum of understanding between the two regions at the government level, and the publishing of nondiscriminatory credential evaluation standards, among others. The findings of this study could have implications for positive social change by providing Canadian Immigration officials with guidance on removing barriers to employment for Caribbean immigrants in Canada through suggested modified or enacted immigration and employment policies.