For my final two work terms, I decided to venture abroad; I moved to Tampa, Florida, to work for an NHL hockey team, the Tampa Bay Lightning. I was the Media Relations Intern for eight months, in what was, hands down, the best year of my life, coming two wins shy of winning the Stanley Cup.
The Hague is the headquarters of the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice, as well as home to many embassies. This work term really opened my eyes to new cultures and new countries, and I met many international students and interns.
It has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life, both professionally and personally. I was working in a field that interested me – business law – so the job spiked my curiosity and eagerness to learn from day one. And as soon as I started, I was given major responsibilities, which pushed me to go higher and higher.
Scenic, historical, spiritual are a few words that describe my experience. Whitehorse is not too big, yet still not a small town. Everywhere around you there is an outdoor activity to participate in, it is easy to get to know people, there is vibrant First Nations culture present everywhere and the food is great.
I decided to complete a work term outside Ottawa because the opportunity to work in the field of astronomy was too good to pass up. In addition, I had lived in B.C. previously and loved every minute of it.
During my CO-OP placement as a desk officer at Global Affairs, my eyes were opened to a whole new side of Canada’s federal government. I was responsible for working on Libya and Egypt within a team that covered trade, development and foreign policy.
This experience taught me a lot about collaborating with a creative team and about building structure and awareness around a brand. It also allowed me to continue to grow my interest in, and knowledge of, Ottawa’s technology industry!
For my first CO-OP work term, I travelled across the world to work with EduCARE India, a non-governmental organization that focuses on sustainable development at the grass-roots level. I had the opportunity to design, implement, and evaluate a project that helped identify and serve the health-related needs of an impoverished rural community.
Immersion in the world of telecommunications and technologies
During the Winter 2018 work term, I completed my second CO-OP experience facilitated by the Telfer School of Management. I had the opportunity to work for Nokia Corporation, a multinational Finnish company operating in the telecommunications, information technology and consumer electronics sectors.
For my final CO-OP term at the University of Ottawa, I decided to work at the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) as an intelligence analyst within the Compliance and Enforcement sector, which is responsible for enforcing Canada’s anti-spam legislation.
During my first CO-OP placement, I worked in a law firm as an executive assistant and legal clerk, even though at uOttawa I had only studied medieval and early modern examples of law. At Bertschi Orth Solicitors and Barristers, I was able to learn more about Canada’s modern legal process while honing my writing skills.
As someone who has always cared deeply about human rights, I had the extreme good fortune of spending the first of my CO-OP work terms with Quebec’s human rights commission (Commission des droits de la personne du Québec) and the second with the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.
Mathematics, programming and chemistry: the perfect combination
For my first CO-OP term, I decided to work at Professor Tom Woo’s computational chemistry lab. His work interests me because it is a less traditional way to do chemistry, one that isn’t taught in chemistry courses at the University, except the one by Professor. Woo. It’s the perfect combination of math, computer programming and chemistry.
I started my undergrad degree hoping to join the Foreign Service after graduating. My first CO-OP placement as an advocacy officer at G.lobal Affairs Canada gave me a taste of the broad scope of Canada’s programs and services abroad.
For an international student, CO-OP experience opens the door to future employment in the Canadian job market and it provides me with hands-on experience. I overcame several challenges as an international student while job searching, such as the language barrier—an experience that will prove to be valuable throughout my career.
When I applied to the University of Ottawa’s Globalization and International Development master’s program during my gap year in Spain two years ago, I could not imagine that CO-OP would give me the opportunity to be back on the Iberian Peninsula so soon.
The CO-OP program is the perfect opportunity to take on new challenges and explore different fields. Passionate in helping vulnerable members of society, I decided to work as my first placement in Clinique de droit notarial de l'Outaouais, a legal clinic where I could apply my knowledge of law.
My first placement was at HTS Engineering, where I had the chance to be introduced to and learn all about the HVAC industry. I worked with engineering drawings and advanced software to select proper equipment for new building developments.
Conservation of aquatic wildlife in an increasingly threatened world
When I was given the opportunity to work as a Species at Risk Officer in the Species at Risk (SAR) Program at Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) during both placements, I could not have been more excited. Following my placement, I was very fortunate to be offered student bridging into an indeterminate position with the SAR Program. I look forward to improving the status of Canada’s at-risk species for years to come!
Now, for the summer, I'm working at Facebook also as a Product Design Intern in Menlo Park, California. In the future, I'm hoping to do some more internships either back at Facebook or companies like Lyft or Airbnb. I'm hopeful I can explore some other cities like Seattle or New York.
Although it is an unconventional journey compared to most, the CO-OP program gave me a unique opportunity to gain real world work experience at large corporations and leverage that experience in starting my own business prior to graduating – something that would not be possible without the support of the CO-OP program.
I worked for the University of Göttingen on a study investigating the effects of forest management and tree diversity on small mammal communities in northern Germany. I spent most of the summer doing fieldwork and traveling, and it was one of the wildest experiences of my life.
For my first CO-OP term, my greatest hope was to discover an opportunity connected to human rights and law. I was fortunate enough to be offered a placement with the Senate of Canada, where I learned more about these topics and the political system than I could have dreamed possible.
When I chose to enroll in the CO-OP Program, I wanted to get to learn more about myself and find out if my field of study was the right fit for me. I also wanted to develop my skills in my field of study. That’s why I decided to do my internships outside of my hometown which is also where I’m doing my studies.
In a nutshell, my internship was a beautiful experience and a journey that provided me with very good memories. I encourage those who are tempted by such an experience to go for it, but before you must take the time to learn as much as possible about your host country and make the right choice!
I was very fortunate to work at Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM) in Nunavut, during the summer 2019 term. My position within the company was an environmental technician. I was stationed at the Meliadine mine site, one of three active gold mines that AEM owns and operates in Nunavut. I was able to apply and build upon the skills and teachings that I acquired at uOttawa in the environmental studies program in a variety of ways.
My goal for my last internship was to work abroad. To this end, during the 2019 summer term, I did an internship in the political section of the Canadian Embassy in Paris, where I learned and apprehended diplomacy, Canada’s and France’s foreign policies, the Franco-Canadian bilateral relations and how the European Union operates.