What program are you in?

BBA, Business Management.


Where did you have your co-op work placement?

For my first co-op, I was an Administrative Assistant at Transport Canada. I handled all kinds of things including administration, security, hiring, and working on budgets. Event planning and procurement was also part of my role. My second co-op was at Canadian Heritage. The work was more client based and I dealt with logistics, operations, and information management.


What is the biggest takeaway from your co-op experience?

From both co-op experiences, the biggest takeaway is the enhancement of my skill set, and the strong networks that I’ve developed. I am humbled to have increased my skill set through all the learning and mentoring from both workplaces in addition to having lifelong contacts that believe in me. 


What work are you doing now?

I’m back with Canadian Heritage under contract. Currently, I have moved into more of a project role as opposed to administration. It’s definitely exciting to be learning new things! Given the chance, I would love to stay here, but if not then there are a lot of opportunities especially in project management.


How did your co-op jobs prepare you for the work that you’re doing now?

I don’t think I would be where I am today without the co-op. My first Director challenged me immensely and when he learned which courses I was taking, he would try to find some work in that area to allow me to apply my knowledge. My current skill set was developed almost entirely  from my co-op experiences.


Looking forward, where would you like your career to go?

Being a public servant is very rewarding. I would also like to further my opportunities in project management. So maybe I’ll work in the private sector for a time and then come back to government. It’s always humbling and exciting to see the direct impact our work has on Canadian society.


What would you say to someone who asks you about co-op?

Just do it. Don’t be intimidated by the job description. Apply. Even if you don’t get the job, every time you get an interview you learn more about how to do it better next time. Co-op is a great way to learn what you like or don’t like in the workplace. It’s not about the money, it’s about the experience and networks that you gain. It’s an amazing opportunity to test out your skills, and enhance your abilities (and confidence). I cannot stress enough how beneficial co-op is for any student.