Why Co-op?

The Major (Co-op) Program in Public Policy is a Work Integrated Learning (WIL) program that combines academic studies with paid work terms in the public, private, and/or non-profit sectors.

The program equips students with the analytical and methodological skills to secure employment as policy analysts in government, business, and the non-governmental sectors, or to continue on to graduate training in public policy. The Program is cross-disciplinary; public policy analysis is the exercise of applying the theoretical frameworks and the positivist and interpretive methodologies of the social sciences and humanities to understand the development, implementation, and evaluation of public policy. It requires the ability to think clearly and critically, to design and execute research projects, to analyze both quantitative and qualitative data, and to write clearly. It also requires an understanding of the context, institutions, and processes of policy-making and implementation, as well as concepts and criteria for policy evaluation.

In addition to their academic course requirements, students must successfully complete the additive Arts & Science Co-op Work Term Preparation courses and a minimum of two Co-op work terms. An optional third work term may be complete with the permission of the Co-op Coordinator.

Benefits of the Major (Co-op) Program in Public Policy include:

  • gaining valuable professional experience
  • exploring the various fields in which public policy can be applied
  • identifying a career path that best matches your interests and skills
  • applying theories and approaches you’ve learned in the classroom to real world problems
  • improving your interviewing skills and promote yourself to prospective employers
  • financing your education through paid work terms
  • exploring career options and network with potential employers
  • gaining a competitive edge when going out into the workforce after graduation

Practical work placements alternate with study terms. Work placements begin in January, May or September for 4 month work terms.

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