Thinking About Adding a Co-op Program to Your Degree?

By Mount Royal University Modified on February 06, 2023
Tags : Academics | Careers | Student POV

Mount Royal grad Anna landed her dream job thanks to her co-op work experience, and so could you!

Thinking About Adding a Co-op Program to Your Degree?

A co-operative education (co-op) program combines your university studies with paid work terms, allowing you to gain valuable industry-related exposure while working towards your degree. This means you'll already have applicable work experience under your belt when you graduate, increasing your chances for a smooth transition into a meaningful career.

In fact, it's been found that students who graduate with co-op experience have higher employment rates and higher starting salaries than other graduates. Other benefits can include:

  • getting insights into different career options
  • developing job search strategies and interview skills
  • building a network of professional contacts
  • gaining overall confidence in your professional abilities

Sounds pretty great already, right?

Anna's WestJet success story

Mount Royal University alumna Anna Kennedy completed the co-op program while earning her Bachelor of Business Administration - Marketing and describes her experience as "phenomenal."

"I was able to refine my resumé and practice my interview skills, which is vital knowledge to have, especially when preparing to enter the workforce," she says.

Using the MRU student job board, Anna applied to and was hired for a 16-month work term placement with WestJet, the second-largest Canadian airline.

"I gained invaluable experience learning from industry professionals, developing both my soft and technical skills, building relationships with stakeholders and so much more," she says. "Not only were these experiences a tremendous amount of fun, but they allowed me to feel fully equipped for life post-graduation."

Anna is a shining example of how co-op can set students up for a smooth transition from university to entering the workforce. Building on her co-op term with WestJet, Anna was offered a full-time position with the company after graduation as a channel strategist.

"I get to work in a position, in an industry and for a company that I love," Anna says. "Marketing is an exciting, fast-paced, and ever-changing field to work in, and since I am only at the beginning of my career, I'm excited about the endless learning and growth opportunities that lie ahead of me."

Thinking About Adding a Co-op Program to Your Degree?

Hard work leads to great outcomes

While co-op is not a free pass to employment — one must still apply and interview for jobs, put in time and effort, and take on real-world responsibilities — the process is supported with a variety of tools and training to give you the best possible chance of success. If you're willing to put in the work, both figuratively and literally, then co-op can make a great addition to your university journey.

Mount Royal's co-operative education program is offered for students in all majors in the Bachelor of Business Administration program and the Bachelor of Science - Computer Science program.

Explore your co-op options at MRU

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