The work term requires the same level of commitment as the academic term. Co-operative education co-ordinators are available to assist students as they prepare for their work term placements. The following steps are encouraged to assist students in preparation for their work term:
Employer contact information will be provided by the academic program co-op office. Students are encouraged to confirm acceptance of the position and make final arrangements for reporting for the work term. Items to be confirmed should include the start time and date, dress code, where to go and whom to contact upon arrival at the job site, etc.
Students are encouraged to obtain medical insurance before going on a work term that will offer protection in the event of an illness or accident (this applies to both students working in and outside of Canada).
Students should be aware of any added clearance required by their employer. Some employers may require a student to get security clearance prior to starting the work term placement.
Students are encouraged to keep a daily diary during the work term as a record of possible items for discussion with the employer and/or co-operative education co-ordinator. These diaries are fundamental to good time management and legal or personal recourse and can assist in the writing of the work tem report. Suggested items to include are: meetings attended (with a short description of what was discussed); observations made during the day on matters connected with the job, staff or clients; notes on items to follow up on at a later date; job-related phone calls; problems encountered and how they were resolved; any other items that may prove useful at a later date.
Students accepting jobs outside Canada should meet with a co-operative education co-ordinator as soon as possible to be directed to the appropriate group to determine the requirements for work visas/permits and other supporting documents. Students should also be aware of any regulations of their work permits or visas and may only stay in the host country as long as indicated on their permits.
International students require a Co-op Work Permit to work in Canada. This permit may take from several weeks to over three months to acquire. International students should apply for this permit as soon as they have been accepted into their academic program.
Specific details related to preparing for the work term may vary by academic program. Please consult the co-op program’s student handbook for specific information related to work term preparation for each program.