Below you will find the answers to some common questions. Please also check our other websites about New, Seeking, and Working Students for more in-depth information.

If you still have questions, do not hesitate to contact hire@sfu.ca or your Co-op coordinator.

General Questions

How many Co-op terms do I need?

You should plan for at least 3 terms to complete the Co-op program and receive the Co-op designation on your degree, which is recognized across Canada.

New Students

Who is my coordinator?

To find out who your coordinator is, please see the Contact Us page. To book an appointment with them or an advisor, please do so through myExperience. If you have other questions, contact your coordinator via email.

How do I opt in the seeking group?

Once you have completed the prep requirements and have been released to seek, you will have ongoing access to view the job postings on myExperience for multiple future terms. You do not need to let your coordinator know each term that you want to job search.

If I attend the workshops a few terms before my seeking term, do I have to attend them again?

You are only required to attend the workshops once. Therefore, if you attend the workshops a few terms before your seeking term, you do not have to attend again.

What counts as a Co-op placement?

A Co-op placement is any position that fulfills all of the following criteria:

  • 420 work hours within one Co-op term 
  • Paid work
  • Position is related to academics
  • Minimum of three months (4, 8, 12 months available)

Can I find my own Co-op?

Student-Developed Work Terms provide a great opportunity finding a job that is right for you, or targeting a specific industry or location. Contact your Co-op coordinator to discuss strategies. You may use your own connections such as family and friends, current employers, colleagues, or people you know through networking. You could also be applying to jobs you find through different means. 

However, make sure that your chose Co-op position fulfills all requirements such as minimum of 420 hours of work, paid, provided supervision, and is in an area of your academic field.

What is the application fee?

There is a one-time application fee that will be applied to your goSFU account. Please visit here for more details.

How much does Co-op cost?

Aside from the application fee, Co-op students pay tuition fees only when they are placed in a job. This fee applies to every term that you work, including extensions and Self-Directed Work Terms. Fees are generally due the 7th week of classes. Students who are placed locally continue to have access to the U-Pass.

See more information about Co-op tuition and what you get access to because of it.

I am an international student, how do I apply for my Co-op work permit?

International students are required to obtain a valid Co-op work permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) before applying to SFU Co-op jobs. This is different from your off-campus work permit. We recommend applying for the Co-op work permit as early as possible as processing times can be lengthy. To apply you must submit a letter provided from the Co-op office indicating you are part of the Co-op program along with your application. You will be issued the letter at the beginning of your New Student term. See here for more information. 

The Co-op office must have a copy of your valid Co-op Work Permit prior to students being released to apply for Co-op positions. Direct questions you have regarding the Co-op Work Permit process to International Services for Students.

Seeking Students

How many Co-op positions should I apply to?

We recommend that Seeking students apply to a minimum of 30-60 jobs throughout the term (that is about 2-4 a week). Senior students should be actively and attentively applying throughout the term. This can take up to 7-12 hours a week and should be compared to taking a course.

How can I practice interviews?

  • You can practice on your own or with a friend using questions from the OLC Interview Questions Database.
  • Use the InterviewStream tool embedded in myExperience. You can record yourself answering questions and then reflect on your performance.
  • Book a practice interview with your Co-op advisor or coordinator.
  • Create an account on Interview Prep to practice Interviews Questions.

I have been contacted by an employer directly for an interview - what now?

If an employer contacts you directly for an interview request, please notify our Co-op office right away by emailing hire@sfu.ca with all the details. We will provide you with instructions for your next steps.

I have received a job offer directly - what now? 

If an offer is sent to you directly from the employer, please notify your coordinator either directly or email hire@sfu.ca. Making the Co-op office aware of your offer, ensures receiving a placement email with information and instructions. If you do not receive the placement email within a few weeks of accepting your offer, please follow up with the Co-op office.

What Co-op course do I enroll in when I have accepted a placement outside of the Lower Mainland? 

Please refer to your placement email for your course enrollment details for your work term.

Working Students

Can I enroll in a course while being placed in a Co-op position?

We do not recommend taking a course during a work term. Your priority and commitment should be with the employer. However, if your employer is open to letting you take on course while you are working, you must submit a Time Conflict Request document online to the Engineering Science School along with written consent of your supervisor. 

Can I leave a Co-op job if it is not working for me?

Before you do anything, please contact your coordinator. They will be able to answer your questions and address your concerns as well as ask you relevant questions to problem-solve the situation. They will be able to give you guidance and advice on what actions you can take and what potential consequences may arise.

I can't seem to find or enroll in my Co-op course - what now?

There are a few things that may be happening:

  • It may be too late in the term for you to register, in which case let us know and we will register you.
  • You may be trying to enrol in the wrong course: each work term number is sequential.
  • Another common issue is that you may have fees still outstanding: in which case pay them in full as soon as possible after which you can enroll in your Co-op course.

I am having concerns about my Co-op work environment - what now?

It really depends on what kind of issues you are experiencing. Physical work environments need to be safe, so check out Work Safe BC and the BC Employment Standards. This might help you in figuring out what kind of concerns you are encountering. 

If this does not answer your questions and your concerns persist, and you feel uncomfortable approaching your colleagues or supervisor, please do not hesitate to contact your coordinator.