Funding boost kicks off Co-op Week in BC

imageCo-op students throughout British Columbia will benefit from $1.3 million in one-time funding to the 16 public post-secondary institutions offering co-op education programs, following the launch of Co-op Week celebrations.

“Co-op provides students with opportunities to apply their learning and acquire employment-ready skills in a related field,” said Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson. “Our government is working with public post-secondary institutions to connect students with employers so that they can get the experience they need for in-demand careers.”

The funding provides $75,000 to each institution to support outreach to more employers and increase employer and student awareness of the benefits of co-op placements. An additional $100,000 will be provided to the Association for Co-operative Education BC/Yukon (ACE), which is a non-profit organization that works with public post-secondary institutions in BC that offer co-operative education programs.

Co-op education combines academic studies with paid work experience in career-related fields. Co-op students have opportunities to apply their learning, gain employment-related skills, and make connections with employers, better preparing them for entry into the workforce.

“After co-op education, I feel more confident as a professional,” said Maria Tepina, ACE Co-op Student of the Year for BC in 2015. “It is especially important for me as an international student because without Canadian work experience it is a big challenge to find a job and build a career.”

Employers benefit from the energy, fresh ideas, knowledge and skills of co-op students. Co-op also provides employers with the opportunity to assess new talent for future recruitment after graduation.

BC Co-op Week runs from March 14th – 18th, 2016. To learn more, visit The Association for Co-operative Education BC/Yukon.

 

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