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Roop Gill

SFU Student Undergraduate
Arts + Social Sciences › Psychology | Environment › Sustainable Development

Four people sit around a table in business casual wear.
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"No matter what the scale of a project is, I have always taken the time to respect my co-workers and get to know them as people, and consequently, this established a two-way street."

This summer, my bubble of certainty that I thought contained my career plans in the medical field were crushed by outside factors and I had to learn to land on my feet and problem solve. My study permit extension, which I had filed for five months back, had not come through. My anxiety soared with every passing minute and questions like “How will I be able to finish my graduation?” or “How will I attend graduate school?” ran through my mind night and day. This uncertainty impacted me emotionally, which inadvertently interfered with my student co-op. I had set high expectations for myself in my third co-op, all with Fraser Health, but my not-so-productive mind was constantly battling doubt and fear. I felt lost as things were not going my way!

There is always the other side to hardship. Fortunately, there was another side for me as well, a side which made me appreciate the people in my life. At work, as I shared my experience with my supervisor and the prospect of stabilizing my immigration status in Canada, she was more excited than I was and encouraged me to chin up and give my best. She supported me until the end. Further, as I finally decided what I would like to do in my career, my supervisor, academic advisors, co-op advisor, and other co-workers never questioned me and instead said “GO FOR IT!”  People in the field I am hoping to pursue happily shared their experiences and told me ways of how I can make the most of my experiences right now to maximize my chances of getting into my dream graduate school. All the doubt and fear was replaced with happiness and gratitude and I was finally able to focus on my co-op term. But how did this happen?

Am I lucky? Yes, I consider myself very fortunate, but there is one more thing that made all of this possible — my workplace investing in its people. Unconsciously, I have been a person who loves to know the person behind the work. No matter what the scale of a project is, I have always taken the time to respect my co-workers and get to know them as people, and consequently, this established a two-way street. A mutual relationship goes a long way and will help you during your challenging times. No matter how cliche this might sound, I am a firm believer of Steve Job’s famous quote, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Purposeful networking and relationship-building can be intimidating, especially when your workers are the leaders in your field. But trust me, there is a person behind that title, and if you take the time to invest in them beyond their work and treat them as your mentors, that relationship might potentially fulfill you for the rest of your life!


Roop Gill

SFU Student Undergraduate
Arts + Social Sciences › Psychology | Environment › Sustainable Development

Posts by Author

Illustration of 6 people talking in different languages
When English Isn’t Your First Language

“Gosh Roop! Are you really an international student? But you do not speak with an accent. Wow, I would have never guessed that.” Through anecdotes and introspection, Roop shares a compelling narrative of the struggles of why International students face challenges due to language barriers and biases.

A young man sitting on a park bench, listening to music with his seeing cane resting beside him
Today I Experienced the World Through the Perspective of a Person who is Blind

Roop was on her way home from school when a new passenger boarded the bus. Using a creative, short story narrative, she takes us through her internal dialogue and challenges assumptions. Read on to learn where this journey ends up taking Roop.

You Might Like These... During the Work Term, Professional Development, Workplace Success, Workplace Transition, Communication

Co-op coordinator wth student during site visit
Make the Most of Your Co-op Site Visits

Your Co-op Coordinator, supervisor, and you in the same room -- time for a site visit! Co-op site visits are a time for reflection on your work term including what could be improved and what has been great so far.

person with their head in a book
Responsibility and Success

One of the most memorable parts of my time in co-op was the collection of accidents, errors, mistakes, and mix-ups that happened in the course of working in the laboratory.


grey paper bag spilling peanuts with the words "pay packet" written on it
Salary and Benefits: What you Need to Know

Calling all job seekers. If salary and benefits are important to you, learn the art of negotiation while discovering what compensation packages include and what to ask when the time comes to negotiate for them.

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No more Stolen Sisters logo
Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and Two Spirited: What You Should Know

The Q&A you never knew you needed… but you do. Answering commonly asked questions around the epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls.  Here is one perspective using Indigenous pedagogy. 

A group picture full of students smiling to the camera and the author at the centre of the photo
University Bocconi Campus Abroad Class

Read about her opportunity to take BUS491: Diversity Management with Professor Paola Profeta from University Bocconi and how it gave her more perspective about diversity in the workplace.

Ryan Kitching
Flying the Coop: A Change of Pace in Ottawa

Through Arts Co-op, I landed a position which has helped me bridge the gap between education and the workforce, and has also provided me with valuable experience working in the Canadian public service.