Stay away from Quebec. Here is our story.
I applied to McGill University for MBA and was accepted March of 2005. We made the trek for her to interview in Montreal in June. She was offered a job to any hospital basically. She accepted an offer at the hospital of her choice and got a restricted work permit at the border which was $150. Then she got a physical while still in MOntreal visiting which was $180. Then in June she applied to the order of nurses of quebec (OIIQ) which handles all nursing licensure matters for an application for equivalency. Given she graduated with a BSN in the U.S., they accepted her equivalency but it costed around $236.
Then, once we arrived August 2005, she had to work as a graduate nurse making $16.36 an hour because she did nto yet take the Quebec nursing exam. The QUebec nursing exam is only administered twice a year. She took it in October. She had to go to a giant room in palace de congress and sit with 800 other people, waiting in lines, then writing essays, and then role playing situations at 12 different booths. This took an entire day and costd $434. Compare to the NCLEX which is a hundred somehting dollars and takes 2 hour by computer. The whole thing was farce, terribly inefficient, and the role playing exercises were just silly.
Now that she passed the exam, she got her temporary nursing license NOv. 3rd, which costed $286 and is valid for 1 year. (note that costs are now well above $1000 to become a nurse in quebec). Note the whole aspect of becoming a nurse in quebec is a process of discovery because nowhere are all the steps outlined for you of what you need to do.
In last week of August she got a notice in the mail to renew her temporary license. She had to get a letter from her supervisor stating that she is needed in the hospital, had to provide evidence she took a french course, etc, etc (all sent to the OIIQ), AND had to take a French Exam administered by the office of french language of quebec which is a separate government entity. She has 3 chances to pass it, and can only take it once per year, so she has 3 years to pass it. She waited a month unfortunately before calling the office of french language to schedule an exam and they said she was really late and scheduled her for an exam first/2nd week of october. She took the exam, failed of course, but expected her permti to be renewed because she has two more chances to pass.
She received her results 9 days ago, and expected the OIIQ to also receive them from the office of french language by the deadline for expiration of her permit which is tomorrow.
Now her permit expires tomorrow, so we went to the OIIQ, they said they received no results, so we went ot he office of French language of Quebec, and they said even though she received her results, the results will take at least till December to get to the OIIQ (which is right down the street!). They said there is paperwork that must be filled out and the director has to sign it who is never there anyway and blah blah blah. We explained to them her permit expires tomorrow and maybe they can expedite the results, but they wouldn't do it.
Seriously, what do they have to do? They can see she failed the test, she has two more times to pass it, so why not send the "paperwork" now? I don't see what it is they have to do because they have nothing else to evaluate her on (the OIIQ has the rest of everything else!).
Stay away from Quebec if you're a nurse. I'm an MBA student so I like to look at business process and seriously, the whole nursing thing here is 3rd world, the people running it are rude and stubborn, and it is terribly inefficient. The sad thing is two people at her hospital wrote her glowing recommendations for CRNA school, attesting to the fact she is a great nurse. She is badly needed by the hospital here because the nurses are way overloaded and there is a shortage. Now because of stubborness and administrative blunders, she can't be a nurse here, so she is out of a job for 7 weeks while I finish school.