Arts co-op offers valuable skills for students

Arts co-op offers valuable skills for students
RE: Laurier arts co-op needs to be reformed, Jan 19

Individual student interests are diverse within Arts Co-op and the number of academic programs is high (more than 20 different majors). Many students see co-op as a chance to clarify their interests and career goals, taking full advantage of the opportunity to apply to a variety of positions.

While some arts students elect to apply for jobs that have been secured by co-op co-ordinators and are restricted to co-op students, such as archaeological field work positions through Parks Canada and brand communications interns with packaged goods firms, others are interested in working with their co-ordinator to explore opportunities traditionally not posted by employers, such as specialized research positions with faculty and political positions with federal parties and lobby groups.

Students interested in a career in teaching have the opportunity to obtain valuable experience working with special populations such as children, youth, and those with disabilities.

Co-op fees for Laurier arts students are among the lowest in the province. While Laurier’s two-semester system within the Faculty of Arts does not allow for a full co-op model, arts co-op students have the opportunity to integrate paid workplace learning and experience relevant to their academic program and personal/professional goals, while gaining marketable skills and developing valuable contacts during two work terms.

The skills Arts Co-op students learn while conducting a job search and preparing for interviews are an added benefit in their career development.

—Karen McCargar