How much does it cost to participate in Co-op?
- Program Admissions Fee: All students are required to pay the non-refundable admission fees for participation in the program. The admissions fee will be posted to your BU Account upon processing of your Co-operative Education admissions letter.
- Work Term Tuition: Once a job offer is accepted, the student enrolls in the appropriate Co-op Work Term course and pays the posted tuition amount. The tuition for each co-op work term is tax deductible.
These fees do not guarantee a Co-op job, but rather, cover a portion of the actual cost of operating the co-op program. Important things like:
- developing co-op job opportunities and maintaining employer relationships;
- organizing and scheduling job interviews;
- designing and delivering courses to prepare students for success in their job search, including job search training, career advising and work term preparation;
- co-op job search services, including résumé critiques, practice interviews and advising;
- curriculum to prepare students for success on their work term, including co-op student monitoring and worksite visits;
- interacting with faculty and other internal university departments to maintain and develop regulations and processes;
- validating and monitoring student jobs to ensure high quality co-op learning opportunities; and,
- administering and maintaining the co-op information management systems.
For the latest fee and tuition information, please visit Financial & Registration Services.
Will Co-op guarantee me a job?
Your success is based on many factors, including how active you are in the job search process, the number of positions applied to, effectiveness of cover letter and resumé to sell your experience and skills, your past experience, and, most importantly, a positive attitude and realistic expectations.
How do I find an employer or position?
While ultimately it is the responsibility of the student to secure a position for their work placement, BU is constantly reaching out to businesses in the community to identify and secure co-op opportunities. Students in the program will receive communications on a regular basis regarding any new openings with businesses, and they are also encouraged to meet with the Co-op Coordinator to discuss employment options should they find themselves struggling to find a placement.
Can I arrange my own employment?
Yes!. We work closely with you to assist you in locating possible positions, provide resource and guidance and work with a myriad of employers to source work terms. You should apply for as many positions as you feel qualified for – the more applications, the more job prospects. You may know of companies in your hometown that may hire Co-op students. You need to submit the company and position information to the Brandon University Co-op Office for approval.
How much will I be paid?
Employers set salaries. Typically your salary increases with each work term, but this is not guaranteed. Students are typically paid hourly with average wages falling between $12 to $19 per hour but this depends on many factors, including the industry, the level of the position, and the local economy.
Remember, the primary reason for obtaining a cooperative education position is to gain valuable experience, training and skills directly related to your field of study. Your Co-op Coordinator can give you specific compensation information for your program.
Can international students apply to Co-op?
Yes! International students can apply to the Co-op program.
Do I need a work permit to work as a co-op student?
Yes, if you are not a Canadian citizen or Landed Immigrant, you must apply for a work permit to work in Canada. Once you have been accepted into the Co-op program, your Co-op Coordinator will provide you with the appropriate application form to apply for a work permit. This should be completed as soon as you are accepted into the program. Once the application is completed, it can take up to 12 weeks or longer to get a work permit and you will not be permitted to accept a job until the work permit is in your possession.
Are there any other documents I need for Co-op?
If you are working in Canada you require a Social Insurance Number (SIN). Your SIN number is a nine-digit number used in the administration of various Canadian government programs. SIN numbers can be obtained through Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC), a Federal Government department dedicated to helping people secure work in Canada. For more information: http://www.hrsdc.gc.ca/
Finally, you may be required to complete additional company-specific documentation prior to starting your work term, for example, non-disclosure agreements
What does my Co-op Coordinator do?
Your Co-op Coordinator works with you one-on-one before, during, and after co-op. They help you prepare for co-op, identify and apply for appropriate jobs, and reflect on your experience. Your coordinator also teaches your Professional Development Series course and is available to assist you if questions or concerns arise. You can book an appointment with your coordinator by sending them an email.
When can I expect to begin my first work term?
Can I change my work/study sequence?
You must maintain pre-determined work/study sequence while participating in the Co-op work terms. If there is an opportunity or circumstances which warrants a change of sequence, students should contact the Co-op Coordinator to seek their recommendation.
If a change of sequence is recommended by their Co-op Coordinator, students are responsible for:
- Preparing (1) a written request, providing details reasoning with proposed action plan and (2) a revised course plan with unofficial transcript;
- Arrange a Study/Work sequence change request review with the respective Academic Chair or his/her designate. Once the academic department has reviewed and endorsed the change of Work/Study sequence, it is the student’s responsibility to submit the documents to the Co-op Office for final approval and administration.
Please note that in some cases it may not be possible to make a change and the request will not be approved. Students who voluntarily change their work/study sequence without permission will be withdrawn from Co-op.
When do I start looking for a position?
Do I have to return to the same employer?
What if I am unable to find a job?
We will work with you to expand your job opportunities by considering a variety of geographical locations and types of positions, including global opportunities. If you are unable to obtain a co-op job, you may be permitted to take courses, do community service, or engage in other appropriate activities. Your options depend upon your college and academic program.
Our goal is to see you placed. If a work term is not secured, you are not required to leave the program. We will continue to assist you and work with you in finding a work term at another date.