Co-op students at Northern Collegiate held a career fair on Wednesday, showing off their work placements. Students have done co-op placements from the hospital, retail services, and retirement homes.
A co-operative education or co-op is an opportunity for students to gain job experience. At the beginning of the 20th century, engineer, architect, and educator Herman Schneider concluded that the classroom knowledge of a student was not sufficient for technical students. He observed that the more successful employees had experience before their graduation day. By 1905, the Board from the University of Cincinnati allowed Schneider to try the cooperative idea of education for one year. In 1906, the program immediately became successful as proven that over 100 years have passed since the trial.
A co-op experience can be an educational experience because it allows students to have a hands-on understanding of the work force and gives students practical experience, job search skills, and references. By participating in a co-op, students are given the chance to try the job he or she is interested in. A student’s classroom knowledge is tested and expanded at the workplace as time passes on during the co-op experience. With this opportunity,a student’s maturity and confidence will increase.
The career fair was set up in Northern’s library to allow classes to walk around and see how a co-op can be beneficial to a student. The fair also gives students a chance to understand what certain people do as their daily job. Work placements were all over town, including Shopper’s Drug Mart, the Telemetry unit at Bluewater Hospital, Lakeshore Veterinarian, Rosedale Public School, Slippacoff Dentist office, Goodwill, and many more. Co-op opportunities are a good educational experience for a student to expand their knowledge.
Editor’s Note: Madison Taylor is a co-op student herself, having served for the last few months at Lambton Shield.