Co-op in General

Co-op Admission is direct entry at the time applying to Brock University. Students are admitted directly to the Co-op stream of the degree program; application after year one is not required.  When you receive admission to Brock you will know that you are accepted into Co-op.

Students can apply to Co-op after their first year of University study using their year 1 grades; however, space may be limited and not all the co-op programs will be open for application.

Co-op is an integral part of the respective academic degree program. Therefore, Undergraduate co-op students will earn an Honours Bachelor degree with the Co-op distinction. Graduate co-op students will earn a Master degree with the Co-op distinction.

Undergraduate Co-op students follow an accelerated academic programming that extends the degree program by typically four months than the respective regular degree program. However, students will gain a minimum of one year of accumulative work experience by the time of graduation. Graduate Co-op students degree program length will be extended based on the number of work terms that the students are required to complete.

Your Co-op work term sequence is pre-determined based on the program design. Structured programming is to ensure students are equipped with necessary skills and knowledge to contribute to the world of work. Please refer to co-op specific degree program sequence published in the University Calendar for your respective Co-op programs.

Please refer to our Program Sequence Brochure for program specific sequence.

The fee covers the cost of administrative and operational services. It is not a placement fee. Co-op programs operate year-round. This continual cycle impacts many of the campus resources, such as facilities, teaching resources, staff resources, as well as promotions/marketing and travel associated with securing employment opportunities for you. The Ontario government does not provide additional funding for co-operative education programs to post-secondary institutions, so this fee helps cover the costs associated with operating Co-op programs.

The Co-op Fee covers the cost of running our Co-op program, and includes (but is not limited to):

  • Designing and delivering programming to prepare students for success in their job search, including early talent development preparation, job search training, career advising and work term preparation.
  • Co-op job search support, including résumé and cover letter critiques, practice interviews and performance coaching.
  • Developing and maintaining employer relationships to promote Brock Co-op students to employers.
  • Programming and support to ensure students’ success on their work term, including regular follow ups and work term check-ins with both students and employers.
  • Facilitation and support of end-to-end recruitment and hiring process for both students and employers.
  • Organizing and delivering employer events to help students connect with industry partners and alumni.
  • Administering and maintaining Co-op information management systems.
  • All other activities related to the support and promotion of Co-op students.

Please click here for the Co-op fee structure.

Undergraduate Co-op Programs are Honour degree programs and therefore, undergraduate co-op students are required to maintain their Honour standing at all times (i.e. 70% accumulative average in you major, 60% accumulative average in your non major). Graduate co-op students are required to maintain a minimum of 75% accumulative average.

The Co-op Education Office encourages students to participate in an exchange academic term and/or seek an international work term opportunity.  There are many opportunities abroad and we want to support students that are particularly interested in seeking exchange/international opportunities. If you are interested in going on an exchange academic term, you will need to plan early and consult with your Academic Advisor regarding when you can go on an exchange term and how it will impact on your work/study sequence.

Co-op Journey

During your first year of study, our Co-op Transition Advisor is your point of contact for co-op.

We also offer an optional Year 1 Co-op Programming/Events to support your transition into your Co-op journey.

Following your program schedule, you will enroll in our Co-op Professional Preparation course (0N90 for Undergraduate Co-ops; 5N90 for Graduate Co-ops) and be engaged in the formalized co-op programming. Our Professional Preparation Course curriculum is framed and developed around Brock’s Career Development Model. This noncredit course is a mandatory prerequisite requirement for you to complete with an “SA” (Satisfactory) grade in order to continue with your co-op journey. Our Career Development Consultants will be your point of contact during this course. 

The Co-op job search process is a competitive recruitment and selection process. Your designated Talent Coach will work along side with you and coach you in securing a co-op opportunity that will meet your skill development goals. Our Talent Partnership Consultants proactively outreach to qualified employers to promote our student talent. At Brock, co-op students to us are not just a number rather we view each student as individuals filled with potential. Our objective is to help employers and students to recognize that potential. We encourage you to work with your Talent Coach closely.

The job search process typically begins four months prior to your scheduled work term. The time required in job search depends on your goal for your upcoming work term, your skill level and your preparedness for the hiring competition. Typically, we recommend that our students to allot 30 minutes a day during their job search term to work on co-op related activities including preparing job applications, networking with professionals, practicing interview skills, etc.

In addition to Co-op Preparation Course (0N90/5N90) you complete, your designated Talent Development Specialist (TDS) will assist you with preparing for your entire co-op job search competition. Our TDS team assists with resume and cover letter critique, informational interviews, LinkedIn profile, interview preparation and so on.

Yes. The majority co-op students rely on the job opportunities developed by the Co-op Education Office. However, you are encouraged to conduct self-directed job search utilizing the skills you learned from your Co-op programming. We developed resources, tip sheets and scripts to guide you with self-directed process in addition to receiving support from the team.  The Co-op Education Office must approve all opportunities secured independently to ensure the position meets Co-op Education standards and your employer is is fully aware of their responsibilities as a Co-op employer.

Jobs are not guaranteed as the employer will decide who they would like to hire from Brock. You will be competing against other students to secure employment opportunities through the recruitment and selection process. Your success is based on many factors, including how active you are in the job search process; the number of positions to which you apply; how well your cover letter and resumé sell your experience and skills; your interview performance; your past experience, either paid or unpaid; your grades; and, most of all, a positive attitude and realistic expectations. Students who work with our team closely and incorporate our coaching have been successful with securing a co-op work term.

Co-op work terms are typically paid opportunities. Pay varies by program and generally increases with experience. The amount you are paid while on a work term is determined by the employer. For a copy of our salary surveys, please click here.

We strive to secure paid employment for our students; however, some special programs and industries may not offer remuneration because of the nature of their business (examples include Advertising Agencies, Entertainment & Media industry, Fashion industry, Non for profit organizations, Healthcare industry, Sports industry, Gaming industry, Music industry, etc.).

We encourage our co-op students to go where the opportunities are! Co-op opportunities are available across Canada and internationally. Typically, over 40% co-op students work in the Greater Toronto Area; 30% in Niagara Region (mainly, St. Catharines on a bust route), over 10% in Burlington/Hamilton area, 6% in Eastern Ontario.

We encourage our students to go where the opportunities. Depending on industry, jobs may be more plentiful in certain cities/geographic areas; by limiting your job search to a specific area, you may be limiting your options. Finding housing and paying for moving expenses are your responsibility. The federal government does provide certain costs related to relocation to be claimed. Please click here to see T1-M Claim Form for Moving Expenses from Revenue Canada.

You are not required to stay with the same employer unless you committed to return.  Accounting students may be an exception due to the hiring practices CPA employers follow. Statistics show that students who return for additional work terms have an increased chance of being hired full-time upon graduation.

Your co-op work-term credit apply to the requirements for obtaining a co-op distinction on your degree; they do not replace academic credits required for completion of your degree.

You are not encouraged to enroll in academic courses while on a work term as it may affect the work term performance and availability to perform work related duties. While you are on your co-op work term, you will be working full time (i.e. 35 to 40 hours a week) for the entire duration of your work term. It is expected that you are fully engaged in your work term and your Co-op employer is under no obligation to accommodate for time off to write academic exams, complete or hand in assignments during your regular scheduled work hours.

Co-op for International Students

This section provides general information only and should not be considered legal advice. Please refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website directly for the most current information.

As a Brock Student, you also have access to Brock University’s International Services  and Immigration Consulting for additional support. Students can email International Services directly at isa@brocku.ca.

Yes! As outlined by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), international students can apply and take part in Co-op programs at designated learning institutions that require work Co-op/internship experiences as part of the degree requirements.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) requires all international students who are accepted into a co-op program to obtain a valid Co-op Work Permit – in addition to a Study Permit, to legally be considered for Co-op employment opportunities and complete required work terms in Canada. Employers require all international Co-op students to have a valid Co-op Work Permit at the time of being considered for the position.

Students must prove that Co-op is essential to completing the program, upon applying for the Co-op Work Permit. International students must also obtain a Social Insurance Number (SIN) to legally work and get paid by employers.

For more information on permits and what is required, International Services presents workshops and drop-in sessions for Brock’s international students. More information around event dates, times, location, and sign-up can be found on ExperienceBU – Brock International Events (https://experiencebu.brocku.ca/organization/international/events).

Detailed information on eligibility for Co-op Work Permits can be found here on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) webpage.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) states that students are eligible to apply for a Co-op Work permit if:

  • you have a valid study permit,
  • work is required to complete your study program in Canada,
  • you have a letter from your school that confirms all students in your program need to complete work placements to get their degree, and
  • your co-op placement or internship totals 50% or less of your study program.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) states that students are not eligible for a Co-op Work Permit if they are taking one of the following:

  • English or French as a second language (ESL/FSL),
  • general interest courses, or
  • courses to prepare for another study program.

Students must apply for their permit through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC): https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/work.html

Follow the link to begin the application process online. Once you have accessed the website, select “Work as a co–op student or intern” for additional information on eligibility, how to apply, and the required forms that need to be completed and submitted.

Co-op Work Permits can be requested within the Study Permit application, or a separate application can be submitted if Co-op is confirmed after starting the program.

For more information on the application process, please visit International Services Frequently Asked Questions or contact Brock University’s Immigration Consulting at isa@brocku.ca

Please refer to Brock’s Co-op Programs  page for additional information on Co-op related fees.

There is no fee for the Co-op Work Permit application process.

The Co-op office will reach out to students approximately eight months before their scheduled work term and will provide a letter of confirmation to assist with the application, free of charge.

It is important to be mindful of potential delays and to apply for the Co-op Work Permit as soon as letters of confirmation are available.

For example, if an international student’s first work term is scheduled for the Spring/Summer of their 2nd year of study, they would want to submit their work permit application in Fall (September) of their 2nd year.

Please refer the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to check current processing times on permits to plan accordingly: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/check-processing-times.html

Co-op Work Permits can only be used for Co-op work terms and employment opportunities that have been approved by Brock University’s Co-op office.

As an international Co-op student, your Co-op Work Permit may have Brock University listed as your employer. This is to identify you as a Co-op student. This indicates that students can work for any employer that is accepted by Brock University’s Co-op offices.

All Co-op opportunities must be approved by the Co-op offices in order to be considered for a work term.

As an international student, it is very important that you are always checking the expiry date of any permits and your passport. It is mandatory that you maintain your status in Canada.

A Co-op Work Permit must be valid during the entire length of all upcoming Co-op Work Terms. If your study permit or passport expires prior to your Co-op Work Term, you will need to apply for an extension of your study permit or visa at the same time as your Co-op Work Permit application.

Please refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for more information about the process, when to apply, how to apply, and what to do if your permit is expired: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/extend-study-permit/when-to-apply.html

As outlined by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), international students work terms and employment opportunities cannot be more than 50% of the total program of study.

For example, if an international student is completing a program that is only 8 academic terms in length, they are only eligible to complete up to 4 Co-op work terms.

A Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a 9-digit number that is required for anyone that wants to work in Canada. Protect your SIN as it should remain private, and it is illegal for anyone else to use it.

While SINs are confidential and should be kept closely guarded, employees are required to share it with employers upon accepting a job offer, for administrative and tax purposes.

International students must apply for a SIN prior to scheduled work term.

For more information on Social Insurance Numbers, please click here

You can complete the SIN application online or by mail. Brock International Services invites Service Canada officers to deliver application workshop virtually on a regular basis. Please follow ExperienceBU for upcoming events or connect with International Services for more information or contact isa@brocku.ca

For more information on Social Insurance Numbers, please click here.

A valid Canadian bank account is required for international students who will be on their work terms. Once you start working, you’ll need a Canadian bank account to deposit your hard-earned money. You can start your application for a Canadian bank account from inside or outside of Canada.

Choose a bank close to campus. All banks are not the same. Shop around for the best service package to meet your needs. You can find more tips related to banking in Canada provided by (https://brocku.ca/safa/).

For information on the Post Graduate Work Permit, please refer to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRRC) website here

Follow the above link to find out more about the Post Graduate Work Permit, including eligibility and the application process.

In order to apply for the Post Graduate Work Permit, students must wait for final grades to be released and obtain a confirmation letter from the Graduate office. Please note that final grades for Co-op terms cannot be release until after your final day of work.

Please visit the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website here before traveling outside of Canada while on a permit.

Always ensure that you are checking and maintaining your status before traveling outside of Canada. If you are unsure, please connect with Brock University’s International Serviceand Immigration Consulting for more information.

IRCC Help Centre (Frequently Asked Questions – Online): https://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/index-a-z-can.asp

IRCC Client Support (Call) Centre – 1-888-242-2100 (for those already in Canada): https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/corporate/contact-ircc/client-support-centre.html

Automated telephone service (available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week): You can listen to pre-recorded information about IRCC programs and check the status of your application.

IRCC Web Form (direct inquiries can be submitted through the web form): https://www.cic.gc.ca/english/contacts/web-form.asp