Students at the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) will be encouraged to explore co-op opportunities to support their career ambitions.
The university will receive $75,000 to support outreach to more employers and increase awareness of the benefits of co-op placements for both employers and students.
Programming in co-op education combines academic studies with paid work experience in career-related fields. Co-op students have opportunities to apply their learning, gain employment-related skills and make connections with employers. This experience better prepares students for entry into the workforce.
Employers benefit from the energy, fresh ideas, knowledge and skills of co-op students. Co-op placements also provide employers with the opportunity to assess new talent for recruitment after graduation.
The funding announced today builds on a $1.3-million investment in co-op education in 2015-16 for a total investment of $2.6 million.
Government support for co-operative education aligns with commitments in the BC Jobs Plan, #BCTECH Strategy and B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint. Co-op programs are offered across many sectors, including programs that lead to a range of occupations needed in the technology sector.
The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of British Columbia's vibrant technology sector and strengthens B.C.'s diverse innovation economy. The multi-year strategy includes a $100-million #BCTECH Fund and initiatives to increase talent development through more tech-related grads, co-ops and coding, as well as data innovation and market access for tech companies to drive innovation and productivity throughout the province.
Shirley Bond, MLA for Prince George-Valemount –
“B.C. expects up to one million job openings by 2025. The #BCTECH Strategy was created to support activities and initiatives that will develop the talent needed to fill those jobs. Co-op education provides a much-needed link between post-secondary education and employment.”
Mike Morris, MLA for Prince George-Mackenzie –
“UNBC’s co-op education program benefits both students and employers in our region. Students get the on-the-job experience and skills they need to prepare for a career, while employers have the opportunity to develop the student's skills to suit their particular industry’s requirements.”
Daniel Weeks, UNBC president –
"UNBC is inspiring the next generation of leaders in British Columbia and through co-op programs students can demonstrate their knowledge, capacity and potential in the workplace. This funding will help UNBC develop deeper connections with the business community in Northern B.C. and, in turn, support expanded opportunities for students."
- There will be nearly one million job openings in B.C. through to 2025.
- Approximately 42% of job openings will require college education or apprenticeship training.
- 36% will require university and/or significant work experience.
- 18% will require high school and/or occupation-specific training.
- The Association for Co-operative Education BC/Yukon: http://www.co-op.bc.ca/
- BC Jobs Plan: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
- #BCTECH Strategy: https://bctechstrategy.gov.bc.ca/
- BC’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: https://www.workbc.ca/getmedia/4c54646a-93fa-4566-b148-f43a3f27b240/Booklet_BCsBlueprint_web_140428.pdf.aspx
Trish Fougner, ManagerGovernment Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Advanced Education