“What is public relations?" This question feels as vague as someone asking me what majoring in Communications studies leads to. I admit that I want to pursue a career path in this industry, but I have repeatedly asked myself this question throughout my academics. In my search to find out, my experience working as a Communications Assistant in SFU’s Communications and Marketing office has given me a clearer picture of public relations.
Your Co-op seeking term is full of opportunities. But without an idea of what you’re looking for, it can be overwhelming. As a newcomer to the communications field, I spent my first seeking term sifting through job after job like a deer in headlights, not knowing what to look for and where to look for it. Continue reading to learn how working with a company that shares my values enhanced my co-op experience.
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. 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.
If you are a current Co-op student, someone who’s about to begin their work term, or someone who’s thinking about possibly joining the program, this one is for you! I remember going into my first Co-op work term and finding comfort in reading about other students’ Co-op experiences. Not knowing what to expect can be scary, so being able to have a snapshot into what others have experienced or learned can offer some insights.
So, you've just started your first hybrid Co-op term and you have no idea what to expect or how to navigate a hybrid model of work within the corporate sector. Things may seem a little overwhelming! Here is the good news - there are 8 keys that I have picked up through my own trials and tribulations in a hybrid Co-op term.
I was determined to find a position during my Co-op search to anywhere I thought was interesting. When I saw PCL had an opening, I applied, even though I didn’t know anything about construction. While I had no experience in construction marketing, I was still intrigued and applied. Continue reading to learn about my experience in taking the challenge of diving into a new industry.
I can write a solid resume, interview well, and make sure that my online presence is on point. The one thing that’s always been a struggle? The dreaded cover letter. Continue reading as I highlight some of my top tips to selling yourself and securing that interview.
I never felt that I was good enough from my early years. I was a child that frequently struggled in school. No matter how much I put my heart and soul into projects or homework, I felt constantly knocked down. So a mix of excitement and dread came over me when I was notified that I was accepted into the Knowledge Network Co-op. Continue to read about how I defeated my inner saboteur and learned to work with a learning disability.
I’ve always been deeply fascinated with audio as a medium. After all, I’ve worked with it plenty–I picked up the flute at age 12, and music’s been playing nonstop in my life ever since. Not just performing, either: composition, production, sound design, even a bit of voice acting as a hobby. So, when I saw the post from SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement, I was curious. Continue reading to learn more about my experience working in the world of podcasting!
After completing 6 Co-op work terms, one thing I really enjoyed about my Co-op experience is that I had the opportunity to gain work experience from different types of organizations. I started with a 5-person non-profit organization, then to a 20-person start-up, and then landed my dream Co-op at a large 100,000+ person multinational tech corporation. One thing I’m thankful I realized early on in my Co-op journey is this: don’t be turned off from doing a Co-op with a small organization.
I always knew I was more of a hands-on learner than a reading and writing learner. As much as I enjoy reading, writing, and listening, the thought of rolling up my sleeves and getting my hands dirty was just way more enticing and exciting. As my work term comes to an end, I can wholeheartedly say that I have grown professionally and personally from a timid university student to a budding young professional.
When it comes to social media and digital marketing positions, it’s easy to be blinded by the positives. After all, many Communication majors are fascinated by digital marketing and algorithms— and if you’re a digital native, creating social media content might already be second nature to you. Whether you manage social media for your organization or create external content, there are a few bonuses to consider.
Welcome to your first Co-op job! You showed your stuff at your interview and wowed your future employers with your knowledge and experience. You come into your first day and that’s when you realize: you don’t know anyone at all, and everyone looks more knowledgeable and more mature than you. Keep reading to see a few tips that Claire has for you to battle your imposter syndrome and win!
Video editing can be hard. And while this video won’t turn you into an editing master, it can hopefully provide you with some information to make the job easier. Being a third-year Communication student with a passion for creating, Brianna Tsang shares 5 tips and tricks that she has learned throughout her 8-month Co-op placement with FCAT (Faculty of Communication Arts and Technology) as a Digital Communications Specialist.
Landing your first work term can be a lengthy and challenging task, but the work doesn’t stop when your get that offer letter. Navigating your first day, and even first term can be tricky. Continue reading to see four tips that helped me make the most of my first work term and helped me turn my 4-month placement into an 8-month one so hopefully, you can too.
Finding community in your workplace is just one way to enrich your overall working and learning experience. Creating relationships with colleagues, and friendships in the community not only benefits your work life but can reflect a positive personal life as well. Whether this looks like sharing inside jokes with a co-worker, a meaningful conversation with a peer, or a meal with community, these are just some ways to grow your social circle.
The day before an interview tends to be the most anxiety-inducing, especially as a Co-op student. Maybe it’s because you really want that specific position, have little professional experience or generally have social anxiety in new and uncomfortable situations. With a little reflection on my interview process, I came up with three tips to hopefully calm your nerves before, during and after your next interview.
Whether you’re like me and have been doing Co-op for a while now, or just have had your fair share of job interviews, then you probably think you know everything there is to be prepared for one. However, I will tell you right now that, unless you have actually conducted a job interview, you most likely do not. Continue reading for some insider tips on Co-op interviews that I feel everyone should know.
Your path to discovering your career won’t look like someone else’s. This is an important lesson that I've learned during my Co-op journey that has motivated me to explore all the possibilities of what a future career could entail. Keep reading to learn about how I've continued my Co-op journey and more about how I've continued to learn about myself during this experience.
Having self-confidence has consistently been a goal of mine to achieve. And for a long time, I would get scared at the thought of pursuing Co-op positions as I thought that it would surely make me feel less confident about myself. But little did I know, my experiences in Co-op have been one of the biggest factors in building my self-confidence.
I imagined that working in social media would be a walk in the park. After all, I’ve spent about half my life rotating through different apps every day like a very boring episode of Black Mirror. What I forgot to take into consideration was that despite its name, I’m not actually the most “social” person at all. Keep reading to learn all about my experience working in social media marketing as an introvert.
As I was finishing my third and final lap biking around the Stanley Park Seawall, my legs felt like Jell-O. I never biked this much before (a whopping 53 km that day, by the way), which made me wonder why I agreed to go on a “short” bike ride with my new co-workers at Vancouver Coastal Health. Looking back, however, I am glad that I agreed to join the bike ride. Continue reading to learn how this activity got me to know my co-workers outside of work – something that I didn’t know I needed.
I’m a student at SFU and on top of that, though, I’m a freelance creative. I do a bit of everything. As my first Co-op work term approached, I got nervous. I was terrified, frankly, that I would have to stop creating if I wanted to pursue full-time work. Keep reading to learn about how I learned to balance working full-time and being a freelance creative.
You probably know that dreadful feeling you get after opening an email that is so long your finger gets tired from scrolling. While the process of sending an email may seem intuitive, there are many considerations that should be made before hitting that “send” button. Therefore, I present to you, essential email etiquette tips every employee should know.
If you are anything like me, one reason that you might have applied for Co-op was because of the many success stories that you've read and heard about. While these stories can be so inspiring and motivating, I have realized that it’s also important to remember that it’s okay to come out of a Co-op term still unsure of what you may want to do. Continue reading to learn about what I learned after my first Co-op work term.
As a Communication major, I’m comfortable with hearing “the medium is the message”, getting lost in 15-page essays, and wondering why a picture of a pipe is in fact, not a pipe (shoutout CMNS 110). Throw me in a tech start-up in a (remote) business development position and well, I’m a touch out of my comfort zone. Keep reading to learn about my experience working in a business role as a Communication major.
Michael joined SFU’s Co-op program during his first year and quickly realized one thing as he began the job search process: projecting confidence and composure are key to showing your best points and skills. Continue reading to learn more about how Michael dealt with imposter syndrome and found his confidence with Co-op.
I have always wanted to work at a non-profit organization. While my main objective during my first Co-op term was to gain experience in the Communication field, that goal to work at a non-profit had always remained in the back of my mind. Keep reading to learn more about my experience working for a non-profit.
Communication? What do you do in Communication? It wasn't until my Co-op term with Fraser Health that I started to gain a solid understanding of what a career in Communication could really encompass. Keep reading to learn about how working in the healthcare sector during a pandemic rekindled my passion for Communication work.
Co-op can be an overwhelming process. You are entering a trial adult experience where you look for and apply for jobs. But what do you do when you are scrolling through the long list of job postings and a wave of companies and organizations blind your eyes? Continue reading to learn about Carissa's experience working for a variety of industries.
Wondering what's it like to do a Co-op term with Co-op? If so, check out Sarah's experience working as the Digital Design and Communications Assistant for the SFU Surrey Co-op Programs, where she had had the opportunity to work with four different Co-op programs!
During my semester of scouring through SFU’s myExperience portal for jobs, I had to learn a lot of things the hard way, which probably led to me getting a job pretty last minute. But I don’t think I’m the only one who has fallen into the trap of destructive habits that creep through the cracks on the road to success. Below is a list of things I wish I had known when I started seeking for Co-op jobs that I hope will help other Communication Co-op job seekers.
Co-op can be an exciting, rewarding, and terrifying experience. Sometimes, we wish we could tell things to our past self, get advice from our future self or just reflect on how far we've come. In this blog, Katie writes letters to her past, present, and future selves about her co-op journey and the progress she's made.
In the process of searching for a Co-op job, you may be thinking “an 8-month co-op seems so long, so a 4-month position is probably the way to go”. Read on for Marilyn's reasons why an 8-month Co-op can be so much more rewarding.
As a Marketing and Communications Intern at Schneider Electric’s Solar Business, I’ve gotten the opportunity to work with so many professionals around the world. Don’t worry, it’s not as stressful as it sounds. In this blog, I'll talk about some of the things I've learned while working for a multinational Fortune 500 company.
Searching for Co-op and wondering what it’s like working for SFU? How about working for SFU Health & Counselling (SFU HCS) during the pandemic? Read as Christy recounts her Co-op experience at SFU HCS and how it has helped her enhance well-being while helping other students.
Throughout this past year, I got to try out a variety of roles working in completely different industries. While all of my positions were marketing-related, each of them tackled a different aspect of digital marketing, challenging me to grow personally and professionally. In this article, I describe my entire Co-op journey and the things I learned along the way.
What's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the perfect job sector for a Communication student? Social media? Probably. Marketing? Most definitely. Healthcare? Read about Erica's experience jumping into a job at Vancouver Coastal Health - during a pandemic no less!
If you’re like me and obsess over Instagram aesthetics, peruse like-minded communities on Twitter, or aspire to be TikTok famous, then you’ve probably considered a digital marketing career at some point and are ready to make your debut in the industry. Here are four Do-It-Yourself skills that will spice up your resume, helping you to leverage your digital marketing talents before your search for your Co-op opportunity!
Being part of a start-up company can be scary enough, but doing it as a Co-op student who is brand new to the industry can be absolutely terrifying. This is what I learned about working for a start-up over the last 10 months as a Communication & Multimedia Associate!
See how co-op student Marielle Juan learned how to break the cycle of over-apologizing from her first Co-op job experience.
Unpacking the reality of the Black student experience in Canada. In this article reposted from The Peak, Linda shares why representation matters, how solidarity can be found within community, and the importance of ending Anti-Black racism in Canadian education institutions.
Does the word mentor scare you? Maybe you don't know what the word Mentorship even means! These are thoughts Bessie had before signing up for a mentorship program at their Co-op workplace. Read Bessie's article on the benefits of working with a mentor!
Staying focused and getting things done can be something we all struggle with, especially when both work and play are online. What, then, is the "procrastination monkey", and how can you overcome the distraction it brings? Clarissa explains how to kick the monkey to the curb, and take control of your time and work.
Ever wondered what working for a non-profit is like? Further, have you ever wondered what working for an extremely small non-profit is like?In her article, Marisa describes what it was like to work at a youth sports-oriented non-profit where she collaborated with a small team of only three, and lists both the pros and cons of non-profit work.
In today's world of social media and aesthetics, the ability to create eye-catching and attractive content can be essential to a communication student's success in their co-op position. The problem is, programs like Photoshop and Indesign can be daunting to learn, and expensive to own. In his blog, Fareed explores whether Canva can be used as a more accessible platform for graphic design.
Bakhtiar Yaqub has decided to formally appoint themselves as the designated Ned Bigby of Simon Fraser University. Read for tips on surviving your work term from Bakhtiar's Declassified Co-op Survival Guide!
Working a new 9-to-5 can come with a pretty steep learning curve, especially if you hold on to your university-student habits. In his article, Gryfin tells us his tips for adjusting to his co-op placement (and adulthood).
Finding a co-op placement can be quite stressful, but if you stick with it you might just find your dream position. Read John’s article on persevering through a difficult job search and making the most of a co-op placement.
Things move fast in a Co-op. One day you could be working with your favorite application, completely comfortable, and the next, you'll be tasked with learning an entirely new application. This is what happened to Vanessa in her Co-op, and here's how her first placement went, as well as her favorite things about both Wordpress and Weebly - two applications you may also find yourself using in a Communication Co-op.
In this article, James details a few things he wishes he knew when he was starting out in his Marketing Communication Co-op placement. Read more to find out what James' top tips for rocking a co-op as a first-timer are.
After applying to 50 jobs and going out to 12 interviews, Oscar Wong wasn’t sure he was going to land his first Co-op. Finally, on the last day of the semester, Oscar was hired for a digital marketing role and he has never looked back. Now, as a Communication alumnus working as an Internal Communications and Design Specialist at Electronic Arts, Oscar is happy to share more on how he navigated from Co-op to career.
"Okay, so you land a Co-op position after sending out what feels like millions of resumes and sweating through multiple carefully curated interview outfits. The hard part is over! Or is it?" Read Emily's piece on how accurate clichés can be, and how to use them to your advantage when entering the workforce.
The field of communications is very broad, and as a result, you may be asked to manage multiple roles in your Co-op position. In this article Abhinav will take you through the lessons he has learned and his greatest tips for managing a multifaceted position.
Despite the warnings and worries of her friends and family, Serena set off on an adventure, accepting a co-op position on the other side of the world, in India, and she has no regrets. Sometimes in order to grow we need to challenge ourselves, and Serena did just that.
Movies like “The Devil Wears Prada” make the fashion industry seem extremely cool and unreachable for the everyday student to work in, but positions are out there for students to grab up. In this article Haoyang will take us through her experience working in the fashion industry and give her biggest takeaways from working with a high fashion, conceptual brand, Leisure Centre.
A student desperately wanting to have class outside suggested we put the decision to a vote. An overwhelming amount of hands went up for having class in the sun and I paused to think about how I could adjust my lesson plan without a chalkboard. The students saw my hesitation and said, “but Claire, don’t you believe in our right to have a democracy?”. This was when I knew I would learn a lot more than just how to teach, from my international co-op term in Catalonia.
What does it mean to work at a Non-Profit versus For-Profit company? What setting would you enjoy most? In this article, Quentin will explain the differences between the two in culture, work environment, and expectations, based on his own experience working in varied co-op positions.
Two months into your international co-op placement, a global pandemic hits. What do you do? Read Victoria’s article for tips on keeping a cool head in tough circumstances, and how to make the best of a precarious situation.
Many of us have heard of a project manager, but few of us know what this role actually entails. In this article, Bethany details what an average day might look like as a project manager, and the many steps it takes to pull a project together.
Creating a comfort zone is a healthy adaptation for much of our lives. But so is stepping out of our comfort zone when it's time to transition, grow, and transform. Anna shares her story and reassures that despite the process being difficult at the beginning, it's worthy of gained skills and self-confidence.
"Losing your job in a pandemic is of no individual fault. COVID-19 has been one heck of a less-than-gentle reminder that each and every one of us has a stake in what sort of collective future it is that we shape through and after this difficult time. And that is hopeful." - Read Sicellia’s reflection on the situation with our future and the future of a job market affected by the pandemic.
Read Thuy's story and learn about what you might find yourself doing as a Communication Co-op student working in a STEM organization during the global pandemic.
"When you work at a non-profit, you will notice one extraordinary and unanimous thing; everyone’s heart is in their work. And during a pandemic, when so many of those we serve are in desperate need, this dedication is clearer than ever." -- Communication Co-op student, Juliette Halliday, highlights working for a non-profit organization as it responds in the face of a pandemic.
Due to the unprecedented situation surrounding COVID-19, many students are struggling to adapt to their new work environment. Thuy An continues her story of how COVID-19 has impacted her life, and how she adapted to working remotely in another country. Read on to find out more about Thuy An’s remote work journey.
The impact of the coronavirus has been felt by everyone across the country but how has the experience been for coop students? Thuy An shares her story on how through proactive thinking from loved ones and support from coop coordinators and supervisors, she was able to book a flight home to join her family while making the necessary arrangement to work remotely.
Have you stopped commuting to work? No more walks to your favourite local coffee shop? Stuck at home working on your tiny laptop? Maria and her team are figuring out new ways for effective communication your teammates while staying sane. She realized that she's not the only student struggling while undergoing the shift. To learn more about the resources that helped Maria turned her hectic reality a bit more manageable and enjoyable, read on.
"There's a phrase in Israel, "buckle up your elbows" which means that it's time to hustle. This is exactly what brought me to the place where I'm writing to you right now." -- read Kim's story and learn how you can achieve anything with enough courage and motivation.
"It's two hours past lunchtime, and you're starting to feel it - you slowly start to doze off." — Read 5 tips from Bessie that will help you to avoid the mid-day crush.
After doing a co-op for a start-up, Margaret Leong shares 6 reasons why you should do it too! Read the article and find out why working at a start-up can be so rewarding.
You know when you go to another country on vacation and everyone is speaking a different language? That’s the way it kind of feels walking into a new job and you are by far the youngest in the room. Everyone seems so educated, knowledgeable and probably old enough to be your parents. But don’t worry - I’ve (kind of) successfully learned how to navigate this intimidating world of adults and I’m here to share my awkward experiences to minimize yours.
"I cried the day I heard that I had won the CBC Radio Peter Gzowski Internship" — Sonya shares her story on how she ended up being an intern at CBC Radio and why it's so important to not give up on your dreams.
Curious how to run social media for a company out of your expertise? Take a look at Cristyn's article, where she reveals the best approaches to social media management and get ready to work in the field!
Working in a technological industry as a non-tech student is much more exciting as you might have thought of it. Hilda shares her experience and debunks three myths about this niche.
If you think that working for a corporation is incredibly dull in terms of social connections, take a look at Leo's article, where he busts this myth!
Have you ever felt that you are not qualified enough for a job you just got? Privilege explains why it is more than alright to be a newbie and what you should understand about your position to take the best from your co-op term.
Are you wondering what skills you might need for a job in CMNS? Co-op student Amy unpacks five essential skills for your future CMNS career you might want to develop.
Classes only make up half of the university experience; the rest is what you make of it.” Join Emily as she depicts her experience outside of the classroom with co-op, study abroad, and semester in dialogue.
Is messing up at work one of your greatest fears that keeps you up at night? Taylor talks about how to deal with mistakes in the workplace. The end of the world can eventually turn into a valuable experience worthy of mentioning in your resume.
“Business courses helped me with workplace etiquette, while Communication courses allowed me to develop different perspectives.” Human Resources student Tabraiz reveals the hidden benefits of applying to jobs outside of your major and gaining a unique, mix-matched skillset.
“Should I ask my boss what to do, or am I being annoying and asking them too many questions?” Leo emphasizes the importance of establishing a clear line of communication with your supervisor and not being afraid to ask for clarification.
Ever wondered what your interviewers were thinking? Amanda takes us behind the scenes of an interview process and shares how to prepare for trick questions, ways to leave a strong first impression and techniques for highlighting skills and experience.
When you go from smooth sailing to being submerged beneath a tidal wave of work, it can be easy to feel a little lost at sea. Before jumping overboard, consider Sabrina's tips for tackling a stormy situation and arriving safely to shore.
"Discomfort isn't bad - it's just stepping outside of your comfort zone." From embracing once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, to seeking out constructive feedback, Magali offers ways to survive and succeed in a new work environment.
"When you work at a start-up, literally anything can happen." Anmol takes us into a world where content is born out of chaos, and the landscape is dynamic, creative and challenging. Becoming an integral part of a new company and seeing your creations make an impact can be one of the most rewarding experiences.
Mysteries, money management and meditation: how do you spend your commute? Sarah recommends ways to make that daily bus ride feel a little shorter and add extra pep to your work morning.
"Can an office be "too quiet"? Is that even a thing?" Certified extrovert Sonya shares advice for adjusting to a new workplace and explains how to conduct a thorough 'me-search'.
Do you look into the future and see a thousand different paths after graduation? Juliette reflects on her time at Careers in Communications and reveals the benefits of figuring out what you hate before deciding what you love.
Creativity doesn't stop in the world of a technical writer. Emily reveals how writing "is often much more than imagery and metaphors" and that stepping out of your comfort zone might just reveal a whole new path.
"Have you ever asked yourself these questions – Why should I volunteer? Is stepping out of my comfort zone really going to benefit me? If you have, then you are on the right page!"
Here are 5 common thoughts paired with affirmations to combat those negative, self-deprecating feelings so you can succeed and reach your full potential. Because these pesky thoughts are only holding you back!
Bored already? Hitting a plateau at work can be discouraging – but it doesn’t have to be. Follow Lauren’s experience of turning a roadblock into an opportunity for growth.
Searching for and adapting to your first co-op work term can be tough and quite unexpected. Jordan reveals five tested practices for boosting your resume and building confidence.
Mistakes happen, but do you learn to them? Linda identifies some common mistakes made by Co-op students on their first work term.
"I’d be hard-pressed to say I have my life figured out – I really don’t." Ryan shares what his Co-op journey has taught him and some tips for anyone who is currently doing Co-op.
Interviews don't have to be hard if you're prepared. Nelson provides some tips on what how can prepare yourself for an interview and impress your interviewers.
Thinking of changing your career path? Saniya explains why it's normal for your career path to not be linear and redefines what it will look like for most of us.
"Sounds silly at first, but have you ever received a paycheque on the 15th and by the 20th you have no idea where it went? Here are a few ways to tackle sneaky spending..."
Want your career to make a meaningful impact on your community and the world, but don't know how? Davina shares how working in the non-profit sector may just be the solution.
International Co-ops aren't the only way to submerge yourself in a culture. Gurleen shares her co-op experience through which she gained a new perspective of her culture right here in Vancouver.
Co-op is a learning experience. Learning experiences aren’t about the “Aha!” moments. They’re about how you get there – and carry yourself through awkward growing pains...
Transitioning from student life to a 9-5 working lifestyle can take a bit of time. Luckily, Jamie has a couple of tips to help you quickly adjust and help you make the most of it!
With the rise of the digital age, the tech industry has become the hub of all industries. As these companies become more popular, you will want these tips to succeed if you're a non-technical students looking to work in a technical company
Think WQB requirements aren't relevant to your field of study? Think again! Kar Hing shares four non-communications courses that helped her succeed on her Co-op work term.
Starting a new job is stressful, and it can be even harder if you feel like you aren’t good enough at your position. Here are some ways Haley learned to overcome feelings of inadequacy in the workplace.
Beginning your journey with SFU Co-op can seem daunting at first, especially if you start with an 8-month Co-op but don't be afraid of it! Check out these benefits you'll get from doing an 8-month Co-op rather than 4-months.
As we all know, Communication classes can be quite heavy on the theory side, and unfortunately, it’s probably never the best idea to whoop out your extensive knowledge of semiotics and Marxism in a job interview. So how do you bridge the gap between academia and industry?
Frankly, I am terrible at saying “no.” Maybe it’s a strong work ethic that has been etched into my existence since I was a child. Maybe it’s not wanting to appear incompetent to the people who could potentially hire me back into a full-time role. Whatever it was, it seemed like my plate was packed to the brim
Each semester, thousands of students transfer to SFU from colleges and universities across the Lower Mainland. Communication student Alex Caw reflects on his experience learning to navigate bigger classes and a bigger campus, as well as his advice for prospective students thinking of making the leap.
For a lot of us who are natural creatives, what more of a dream would it be to do what we love? Working in design might seem like the best of both worlds, but the reality of combining work and play isn’t exactly a walk in the park.
From a young age, Ashley Fraser loved telling stories. While studying communications at SFU she began to realise that journalism might be her future career and the CBC Peter Gzwoski internship opportunity was the perfect way to get her start.
A panel of alumni visited the CMNS 110 class recently to share their insights and advice. Ranging from a variety of industries – health, government, public relations, broadcasting, tech and education
Communications is a vast field with its own unique challenges. It is not only about writing articles or handling social media, but usually requires you to juggle wearing various hats. To make a lasting impression in communications, you must of course fulfill the described job duties, but knowing how to hone your strengths in a Co-op is the cherry on top.
Interviews can be a stressful event, full of anxiety and confusion. Much like the dating world, interviews are a first meeting where you are desperately hoping the other person will like you and vice versa. Here are some things to keep in mind for either situation.
Written during Liz's time at her international Co-op with the International Paralympic Committee, learn how it was a dream come true as it helped her grow both professionally and personally.
Starting in a new workplace as an introvert can seem like a terrifying thing. Even though Camille would much rather hide behind the camera and observe, she knew that the easy way out doesn’t EVER produce the most growth and value.
We are all used to hearing of the impossibility of finding a career after university, and that our degree alone is not a golden ticket to landing that dream job after graduation. While it can seem like a daunting task to find work experience, it may be easier than you think.
Communications Co-op student, Ashley Fraser, spent the summer interning at CBC Radio as part of the coveted Peter Gzowski Internship Program. Ashley shares how she got there and her advice for students pursuing careers in journalism.
When you’re starting off in a new workplace, it can be daunting talking to people who carry the title of CEO, director, and everything in between. While you may feel like a small potato compared to the big spud, it’s important to remember that everyone has to start somewhere. Lindsay shares her story on why your future self will thank you for building your connections early on through Co-op.
Going into your new Co-op position, the last thing you want to hear is, “Are you even old enough to be working.” How do you get the point across that you’re a capable professional with a lot to offer? Natasha has you covered.
Before hitting submit on that job posting, you may be asking yourself: “Would I blend well with the culture and dynamic of this organization?” For Anna, this question was the ultimatum that steered her away from pursuing a more structured marketing position. Instead, she accepted an opportunity with Silverstring Media. Here, she found her niche creating illustrations for independent media that strongly aligned with her own values and beliefs.
Working in an office doesn't necessarily mean that your fashion choices will be narrowed down to a monocromatic palette and clothes that make you seem significantly older than you actually are. Be creative with patterns, try a new hair style, maybe even bring back a vintage look. Harlene has you covered for all your workplace fashion needs with her quick guide on how to look great while still looking professional in the workplace.
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” Well, that may not be an easy question to answer. From an early age, Lisa had always envisioned becoming a doctor, but that quickly shifted after staring her first year at SFU. If there’s one piece of advice she could give you, it’s that University is not the fabled be-all and end-all of your career path.
Working in many different Co-op positions can be analogous with sampling everything at an all you can eat buffet. You see some things that really catch your eye, and some things you know you absolutely won’t like. But the fact of the matter is, you probably won’t know exactly what every single dish will taste like until you opt in to trying it. With Co-op, it’s much the same – you probably have an idea of what you want to do, but trying something entirely new might surprise you and pique your interest for future career options.
Design – a word that has likely resonated with Communication Co-op students at some point. As the field of communication evolves, so do the skills that employers are looking for. Graphic design is becoming increasingly sought after, but where do you begin if you don’t have any prior knowledge? Ryan has you covered with his tips on how to go from design zero to design hero in your next job search!
So you’ve just landed your Co-op position at SFU. You’re excited, and eager to get going – but somewhere along the way, you might notice that working at your home school and studying there can be an entirely different experience. Sally Arang shares her tips on how to make the transition from a student to an employee of SFU as seamlessly as possible.
For many, trying to find the fine balance between work, school, and life can be an everyday challenge. Try taking on three jobs at once! Juvina Silvestre shares her tips on how to stay organized (and sane) while juggling around all your responsibilities.
As someone who has always been passionately engaged with both political and social issues, a job with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada checked two very important boxes. Little did I know, it would teach me much more than I could have ever expected.
A couple months into your Co-op placement and your manager comes up to you and asks you to stay and work with them for another semester? What do you do? If you’re having a hard time deciding, Michelle Raine is here to offer her six tips in helping you decide whether or not to take that extension.
Something that first starts out as a hobby may eventually grow into a highly tangible skill that is valued in the eyes of potential employers. For Jessica, she never considered her ability to create stories from videos would be good enough to pursue a career in it. But that all changed when Vancouver Coastal Health called and offered her a position as a videographer.
The distinct ping of a notification at work often leads to a reflexive action in many of us. Do it, check the email. Sasha Zalyvadna shares her experience on how to combat the need to check work emails more often than one probably should.
The job application process can be overwhelming, especially you are sifting through an extensive list of companies that you may have never heard of. Amy explains why you should take a chance with a smaller organization and the rewarding experiences that may come with it.
Striking a balance between work and life is a difficult task for anyone regardless of their profession. Katerina explains how her desire to work overtook her personal life and she has some tips for making sure burn out doesn’t creep up on you.
When you think of a startup, does the HBO series, Silicon Valley come to mind? While the computers, parked bottoms, and long hours don’t stray too far from the truth, Melissa clears up some misconceptions about the startup life.
A globetrotting communicator, Almira Bardai is a PR and communications professional with over 17 years of experience in the field working all over the globe from Vancouver to Australia. Read on to learn more about her journey!
With co-op, are we better off sticking to our field of study, or should we take a chance at something entirely different? In this article, Rachel reflects on her work term with the RCMP, what she learned about the industry as well as herself in a field that she would have never considered if it wasn’t for co-op.
Most people don’t maintain solid relationships with their references. Don’t be one of those job seekers scrambling to put together a list of references before an interview. Follow these basic practices to maintain connections and maximize your chances of landing the job.
Have you ever gone to a networking event alone? Learn how to make quality connections with these tips on attending networking events on your own and some conversation openers you can use to initiate those connections!
Imagine you get paid to create multiple *twooshes* a day, curate funny gifs, browse Instagram, post awesome pictures and share on Facebook. Yes, being a Social Media Coordinator is very fun, but one must not neglect these four important points to be one.
Hootsuite is a great tool for managing social media platforms and can be incredibly helpful on the job! Cheryl shares a few tips on using the program for Hootsuite beginners.
In the digital age, you never know who’s looking and what opportunities can arise. When you’re putting together your online presence, you want to go beyond cutting and pasting your resume, and get your LinkedIn profile in tip-top shape! Kass shares 5 tips to make your profile POP!
Feeling low on motivation and enthusiasm during an extended work term? Read Charmaine's blog on getting your motivation level up and running during your work term.
During his co-op job, William realized that he needed to build healthy life-long habits for his long career ahead. Below is a short list of small things he does combat body deterioration for the 9 to 5 office-life.
Remember the flood of emails you ignored as a student? Well, turning a blind eye doesn't fly in the office place. Miranda shares useful tips on how to avoid being overwhelmed by reading and deleting!
Emily Taylor, senior Communication Co-op student, debunks 4 more misconceptions about joining Co-op in part 2 of our series. As Emily Taylor, a senior Communication Co-op student says, "Reality check: a degree doesn’t guarantee a job. Vancouver communications, marketing and writing jobs aren’t waiting for you in the stands at Convocation. You’ve got to hunt for them, and Co-op is your open door. "
Matthew enters his fourth year with a newfound perspective on graduation. His time working for SFU Career and Volunteer Services has taught him that when it comes to education, there should be no rush. Here, he shares his top 3 reasons why!
For Pauline, an invitation to a networking event automatically elicits feelings of anxiety, triggers the sweat glands and generates one glaring thought, “no freakin’ way.” Read as she navigates her way through her networking anxieties.
Many students enter communications with the hopes of landing a glamorous, high-paying job. In this article, Celine makes a case for why you may want to consider a less glamorous, but highly rewarding career in the non-profit sector.
Accumulating over 80 credits and completing three quarters of a degree usually rules out any potential opportunity for students to be selected for Co-op, unless you ask Mike Lazar how he beat the odds.
You can’t cross the stage in four years and expect to receive a degree in one hand and a career in the other; succeeding in in the real world is going to take a heck of a lot more than that. Here are 5 essential moves to make before you graduate.
Behind the glitz and glamour of fancy events, are event planners frantically following their minute-to-minute schedule. In this article, Miranda shares some insight and advice for those entering the sometimes chaotic event planning field.
Therese believed her interests in art and environmentalism were too daunting to pursue as careers. She locked those dreams away... until co-op unlocked career opportunities that fused her studies with her passions. Check out her comic!
At the start of her co-op, Sandy expected to work hard and do her best. What she didn't expect is that she would fall in love - and fall hard. What you're about to read is a highly unlikely love story...
Whether you’re a first-year or a fourth-year, you likely have thought about what life will be like after you graduate, and you'll likely have heard some scary things. I'm here to tell you, with some hard work and patience, you don't have to be afraid of the future...
Not everyone can say that they’ve had their movie moment. Luckily enough, it happened to Pauline, and it happened in the exact way she dreamt it would. But, what she didn't prepare for is the reality after saying yes.
My first co-op semester was somewhat different from a majority of the co-op positions that students apply for on Symplicity. I chose to do a self-directed co-op which had me primarily working from home.
During her time with Union Gospel Mission, Bernice Puzon spent her 9-5, like most Communication Co-op students, behind a desk. But, it was also her time spent beyond her office desk that provided rich opportunities to grow and to lease a new perspective on Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.
Are you interested in joining Co-op and wondering what the process is like? Are you wondering when exactly you should be starting Co-op? This article provides insight on what the Co-op job search is really like through my own personal journey.
Although important, your resume and cover letter don't do your skills complete justice. So, instead of simply telling a potential employer what you can do, Karen Leung discusses how to show them through selecting specific items to build your portfolio.
Ever consider working for a communications agency? Terence Chu certainly has. Currently in a co-op position for global communications consulting agency FleishmanHillard, Terence presents three reasons why working in an agency is a wise career move.
This summer, Ashley Gregerson landed her dream co-op position as the Communications Assistant for the City of White Rock. Here, she worked as part of a small communications team consisting of only two staff. Ashley shares what she learned and what you can expect joining a tiny Communications Department.
For some employers today, a degree has become the minimum requirement for most entry-level jobs. Having spoke with this year's winner of the SCOY Award of Merit, Terence Chu, the solution to this conundrum, for me, became apparent.
Moving through your work term, it is valuable to consider what you will take from your co-op experience that will benefit your future career. Kimberly Blair recommends keeping three things in mind: portfolio, contacts, and resume.
Before finding his first co-op placement, Shem Navalta found himself frustrated that his “ideal” job wasn’t available to him. In this post, Shem talks about his experience with searching for his first co-op job and provides advice on how to be open to opportunities that will help you grow.
Kelly shares how her experience with SFU YWIB helped her in her career. Find out what 5 lessons she learned, and what lessons you should know!
What is the role of a technical writer? And what do you do working as one? Communication Co-op student Brent Restivo answers these questions, outlines the workflow of a typical technical writing project and takes you step-by-step through an actual on-the-job scenario.
In a country filled with monks, crazy drivers, and frequent power outages, things were different living in Burma. After four months, it started to feel a bit like home. Here’s a glimpse into my unique experience as a political intern for the Embassy of Canada to Burma (Myanmar).
Whether you’re pursuing a career in writing or not, excellent writing and communication skills are often at the top of the list for job qualifications. Here are five simple steps to drastically improve your writing and set yourself apart from other applicants in a highly competative job market.
Being a Communication major, people tend to automatically assume you have this gargantuan, larger than life personality, and that you’re just a natural people-person. But what about those of us who are, what some might call, introverts?
Nervous heart palpitations, a piercing adrenaline rush, and a case of the stutters; like many Co-op students on their first day at work, I had just been asked to present an introductory speech in front of my colleagues.
Worried about the difficulties you may face while trying to communicate in a foreign country? I hope these 5 tips can be of some sort of encouragement! 화이팅!
Celia Walters is creating some great content in her marketing role at TPD™ - an international Workforce and HR Solutions company! Check out the latest installment of her series on how to answer the most challenging of interview questions.
When I had the opportunity to attend the International Association of Business Communicators’ (IABC/BC’s) Communication Planning 101 Workshop, I jumped at the chance to learn a little more about strategic communication and writing a communication plan.
Did you know that according to some statistics, up to 33% of managers know within the first 90 seconds of an interview whether or not they will hire someone? Learn how to ace your interview from beginning to end with these 8 great tips.
My outlook on networking used to be simple—if I was going to get a job, I wanted to know I got it because I proved myself. That I performed excellently during the interview and the company decided I was perfect for the role, not because we had mingled over beers or BBQ chicken.
Patricia Zhou had vaguely heard of IABC during her first two years at SFU, but little did she know how BC’s chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators would end up having such an on-going influence on her career.
The beauty of working in a city away from home is that as much as it provides you with opportunities to advance your career, it provides you with even more opportunities for personal growth.
When trying to get hired, I hardly considered the prospect of actually working. I was more concerned with building professional resumes and appearing impressive at interviews. Upon landing my first co-op, however, I suddenly realized that I would need to perform in a strange, new environment – one I knew nothing about!
While completing her co-op with posAbilities, Jordana Fridman had the opportunity to observe the other side of the interview process. Here's her insight into what employers are really looking for.
No experience in the tech industry? Break in anyway! Communication and Economics Co-op student Terence Chu shares tips he learned firsthand as a Technical Writer for Ericsson, a multinational Swedish telecommunications corporation.
Starting a new co-op position can be stressful and overwhelming at first. Communication Co-op student, Christie Atkins, shares workplace transition advice from her mentor, Melissa Fast.
Averyl from SFU Public Square shares some insights from experiences volunteering, and has created this list of tips to help you get the most out of your volunteer positions!
As a first-time Co-op seeker with little real-world work experience, it can be daunting to read the words ‘work samples required’ in a job posting. Here are 5 useful tips for showcasing your work at your next interview.
Learning how to effectively communicate in a new work environment can be difficult enough, but add a language barrier and things get even more complicated. Here are Julia's top tips for overcoming language barriers in the workplace.
We’ve all been put into situations where we have felt lost, unsure, or unfamiliar with our surroundings. Here are a few tips to help you make the best of a new or unfamiliar corporate environment.
Ever wondered how your academic Communication skills stack up in the workplace? Co-op student Laura Tuturas sheds insight into how Communications prepared her for her workterm at ZE Powergroup.
After working for a year with Arts and Communications Co-op here at SFU, I’ve seen students land amazing Co-op opportunities, and I’ve also seen students struggle when it comes to following through, and landing the job. Here are a couple of truth bombs from yours truly that I hope will help you buck up and land a Co-op job.
Kelly is a Communications Co-op student who landed her dream job. She shares how she did this with 5 tips!
For Kiran Basra, senior Communication Co-op student, working at Electronic Arts was a unique experience from the get-go. Between re-constructing her job description and fine-tuning her marketing analytics skills on-the-job, Kiran has re-defined what Communication Co-op students can accomplish.
As Emily Taylor, a senior Communication Co-op student says, "Reality check: a degree doesn’t guarantee a job. Vancouver communications, marketing and writing jobs aren’t waiting for you in the stands at Convocation. You’ve got to hunt for them, and Co-op is your open door. " Read on for compelling evidence of how Co-op can benefit you - regardless of what you've been led to believe!
After the exciting and terrifying process of applying to jobs, landing interviews, and finally accepting a job offer, I started to settle in to my new job in the Communication department of the Canadian Mental Health Association. With a solid goal in mind, each day became a new challenge for me to rise and make myself known. Here are the tips I followed that made my placement meaningful to both my employer and I.
Having trouble deciding to whether stay local or move abroad for your co-op placement? Read through SFU Communication Co-op student Samantha's tips on how to make an educated decision when it comes to going abroad for co-op!
Within the first week of my second work term, it became apparent just how much I would be working with Adobe Illustrator. I felt I should be an expert when I was, in fact, still a beginner. How would I rise to the challenge, and become more familiar with the Adobe Suite while on the job?
“How in the world will I be able to add value to this team?” This was my initial (and pessimistic) reaction upon hearing that I would be working with 9 other individuals in the Donor Relations & Events team at the VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation.
My impression of co-op was that it was supposed to be a way in which to explore the challenging world outside of school; consequently, working at my school felt comfortable, and limited. At this point, after a rewarding four months, it is impossible for me to think of my experience as limited.
The first week is often the most stressful for students on their first, second or even sixth work term. Coming from a successful transition into the workplace on his first co-op work term at BCNET, Samuel shares some of his top tips for the first week.
Every semester, co-op students have access to a variety of job postings on the co-op job board. Some jobs, such as technical writing, often appear and have you wondering what that really means. Kristine was hired on as a technical writer for her last co-op term and writes about the job and what it entails.
Averyl Bancroft spent her co-op workterm as a Loaned Representative, as well as one of the United Way's Care-y mascots! As part of the United Way Spotlight series she shares her experience about the Loaned Rep program taking her out of her comfort zone.
So you have been shortlisted for an interview, what do you do next? Take a deep breath, gather your thoughts and do some research! Preparation and confidence are key, but what happens when this isn't enough?
Hear what this co-op student had to say about the Communication Co-op's annual "Get the Edge" event. This year's focus was all about portfolios! Read on to see what communication professionals have to say about the importance of having a portfolio and creating a personal brand.
Finding it hard to find a co-op job that doesn't require any web or design skills? Read on if you're interested in learning how this co-op student conquered her fears and learned how to make the most of her work term using the design skills she learned in just a few short weeks!
Want to add to your portfolio but don't know where to start? Why not try starting your own blog? See how this recent Communication graduate landed his dream job while writing about his favourite sports team, the Canucks!
Ronil landed not one but two co-op placements with The Vancouver Canucks. He shares with us his success tips in landing the back-to-back contrast contract.
Are you graduating soon and are panicking about job searching in the “real world”? If so, read on to find out what some successful SFU alumni and co-op employers are saying about what grads can do to stand out.
As an SFU Co-op alumni Susan Seto is one of the many success stories of the the program. Since graduating in 2008 her co-op experience has shaped her career and changed her life.
Offering up your time and skills for a cause you believe in can also benefit your career. There is great value in putting yourself out there, to discover what you love doing, or to expand on your skills doing what you love.
Ronil Desai’s eye opening journey through his first co-op position with Teekay Shipping Corp. Attending university involves many deadlines and countless interactions with fellow students and professors, not to mention a constant effort to prepare students to succeed in the workforce......
In addition to doing research about the company and job role, as well as preparing great answers, portfolios of work and achievements are becoming an increasingly important part of the interview process.
Want to ace your performance evaluation at the end of your work term? Don't just do your job... excel! Make a positive impact and get amazing reviews from your employers.
Trying to decide if going on an International Co-op Placement is right for you? Follow these words of advice so you can make a well informed decision.
Welcome to Office Life 101. A wealth of friendly advice for the first time or inexperienced co-op student, and some advice as to what is required of you to not only survive, but to flourish in an office environment.
With a love for marketing and advertising, Communication student Lilian Sue discovers how to break into the industry and finds great online resources to improve one's creativity skills during her search.
'Please mind the gap'. To those who have visited England's transportation system these words of caution are heard throughout the day. But for Co-op alumnus Jeanette LeBlanc, the words took on new meaning while working in London during her year-long adventure.
How do Communications Co-op jobs differ between federal departments? Read all about Courtney's experiences as she compares her first co-op with Health Canada to her second co-op with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.
Having completed my first work term for Health Canada as a Communications Officer Intern, I was eager to try something new, and the government was not where I believed that was going to happen. That is until I was offered a position at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada...