Post-secondary students often ask us whether co-op education is a good complement to their business education and whether it is worth extending their stay at post-secondary to take on a co-op program. While each student’s situation is unique, there are considerable benefits to co-op education. Here are a few thoughts from our own experience:
- First, the people who manage co-op programs here in BC are highly regarded for the knowledge, ability and passion they bring to their jobs. They believe strongly in the value of co-op and this is reflected in the quality of placements, the success of the programs, and the long-term business relationships they have established at these post-secondary institutions.
- There is absolutely no better way to overcome the post-graduation dilemma of not getting hired because you have no experience. With co-op you hit the job market with proven work experience. This is a vital competitive edge in the job market.
- Obviously, co-op is the best opportunity you can have to apply classroom learning in a real work environment. What few people realize, however, is that the learning that flows from workplace to classroom can be even more important. Classroom learning can be enriched and enhanced through the application of real learning from a work term.
- With so many diverse sectors in the economy, choosing a career path can be daunting, especially for accounting students. Public practice? Industry? Government? There is nothing better than co-op to help shine a light on different sectors and career options.
- Continued career success may ultimately rest on an individual’s confidence and self-esteem. The benefits that co-op affords in this regard can be significant. Hitting the job market with a well-developed sense of confidence and self-esteem can supercharge the journey along your career path.
- Co-op represents a great opportunity for students to prove their value and true potential to an employer. It’s quite common that a co-op placement will result in a full-time job offer after graduation. (And isn’t that what it’s all about?)
- The people you meet through co-op, including your bosses, colleagues, and clients make a great foundation for building a professional network that could prove indispensable long after your co-op years.
- And finally, let’s face it, the money you earn never hurts.