Being an international student from Bangladesh, I always felt that I did not have the necessary network to succeed in the Canadian workforce even though I feel strongly about my ability to work hard and grow. Coming from an international background, I felt anxious when looking at my peers who have been working in a job since the age of 16 whereas I was just getting started. This is when I was introduced to SFU Co-op.
SFU Co-op provided me with all the necessary resources to succeed in the North American workspace. From resume and cover letter workshops to interview preparation courses, SFU Co-op helped me prepare for the real world in a way that I had not experienced before.
Having finished my second year of university, I had little to no idea of what I would be signing up for. I just had a blind belief in the program and heard nothing but good feedback from senior students and SFU alumni. I can say now, upon finishing my third of SFU designated Co-op terms, that it is one of the best decisions I have made in my university journey.
I completed one term of Co-op with a local BC health care company called MacDonalds Home Health care and two terms at SFU with my home faculty, Faculty of Communication, Art & Technology. With this year-long work experience, I have not only developed professionally but personally as well.
I have learned to conduct and communicate with higher-up team members using effective communication strategies and learned how to be an efficient employee in the Canadian workspace.
Alongside that, I have also gained numerous technical skillsets for the communications profession, such as content management, video editing, copywriting, email marketing, social media marketing and many more. The most valuable thing I personally took out of all the Co-op terms is my relationships. I have had the blessing to work with incredible managers and co-workers that supported my needs, and have been there to help with any issues I might face. I have also learned how my specific industry works and what I can do to prepare for my role as an employee once I graduate.
I have now gathered Canadian experience which I lacked before my Co-op terms along with forming a professional network that I can connect with once I start looking for work upon graduating. I also feel I am ready and have relevant work experience for when I do look for managerial positions.
I can say that my Co-op journey has been nothing short of amazing. I believe Co-op is a very valuable tool, and any international students that are on the fence about should consult with a Co-op advisor to learn how the program can be suited and fitted to their needs.
I wish everyone the very best on their Co-op journey!