Co-operative Education / Integrated Work Program Option (Co-op/I)
The Faculty of Architecture Cooperative Education/Integrated Work Program Option (Co-op/I) is designed to complement and enrich academic programs with work experience. The work terms provide students with practical experience, assistance in financing their education, and guidance for future career specialization.
- Skill building: Developing technical and professional skills, and learning to market these skills through a clear and compelling resume and cover letter
- Networking: Building a powerful network of professionals, consultants and peers in their field to support career pathways and lead to new opportunities
- Expanding horizons: Combining work with exposure to new contexts and communities, as well as travel, with local, national and international opportunities
- Confidence building: Entering the workforce as confident graduates, with the developed ability to transition quickly into a chosen occupation
- Jobs: Receiving support with job search processes, including access to work terms exclusive to Co-op students
- Hiring solutions: Filling short-term needs with keen and qualified students with the potential of attracting emerging talent and future full-time employees
- Investment: Reducing the cost of recruiting, hiring and training. Employers of Faculty of Architecture Co-op/I students are eligible for the Manitoba Paid Work Experience Tax Credit
- Support: Accessing a variety of supports such as a use of on-campus interview rooms and receiving ongoing support from qualified co-op professionals
- Mentorship: Share in mentoring the next generation of design and planning professionals
- Networking: Building partnerships between academic and industry sectors
"The Co-op program has given me the opportunity to build relationships with architects and designers outside of Winnipeg. Being a member of Stantec in Edmonton this summer has been essential to my education and has changed the way I approach design. The range of work and scale of projects they have offered me as a Co-op student has been exciting and beneficial to me, especially as I approach my thesis year."
— Katelynn Schutz, Graduate Architecture Student
Stantec Architecture Ltd., Edmonton
The Co-op/I Program is open to students in any discipline in ED3/4, AMP1/2, and any master's level.
The Co-op/I Program is a non-compulsory option. Credits earned through the Co-op/I Program do not exempt students from any degree requirement and are in addition to the degree requirements of each student’s program. Students will typically participate in four-month summer placements only. Eight and twelve-month work term opportunities will be assessed on a case-by-case basis for their impact on the student’s academic program. ED4 students who successfully secure a summer Co-op/I work placement are required to defer their graduation to October.
The submission of a written report and portfolio covering the work completed is required for each professional assignment. Each successfully completed work term and its corresponding report receives a Pass/Fail grade and is rated at one credit hour for undergraduate students (EVDS course) and zero credits for graduate students (ARCG course). Students completing consecutive work terms must complete a separate report for each term. Credit hours earned for participation in Co-op/I will not take the place of other program requirements.
Admittance to the program does not guarantee a job. Work placements are dependent on availability. Employers will make the final decision about job offers. Students are not obliged to accept any offer.
Benefits and responsibilities
Students participating in the Faculty of Architecture Cooperative Education/Integrated Work Program will:
- Enrich and complement academic learning with relevant paid work experience
- Enhance design and planning skills through practical application in a chosen field
- Develop essential resume, cover letter, and interview skills through workshops and practical application
- Gain opportunities for networking and mentorship by professionals
- Foster leadership potential and professional skills, including decision making, time management, information management, and working effectively with others
- Increase confidence and capability in client relations and professional communication skills – written, oral, and graphic
Co-op/I Students must:
- Submit a complete application form and supplemental materials by the fall deadline
- Attend all mandatory Co-op/I seminars, including, but not limited to, Resume & Cover Letter and Interview Skills workshops
- Respond to all communications from the Co-op/I Coordinator and Academic Liaison within 48 hours
- Review and apply for Co-op/I employment opportunities of interest
- Enroll in the appropriate Co-op/I work term course upon successfully securing a placement
- Pay work term fees
- Prepare a written report and portfolio covering the work completed during each four-month professional assignment in partial fulfillment of the EVDS or ARCG work term course
Academic study while on a Work Term:
As a Co-op/I student you should understand that fulfilling the full-time requirements of your employer is the focus of any Work Term. You may take up to 3-credits of academic coursework simultaneously with a Co-op/I Work Term, provided the course is delivered online, in the evenings, or as an independent study, so as to not interfere with regular work days. Participation in additional simultaneous coursework will be approved only with advanced permission from the student’s employer and the Co-op/I Academic Liaison.
The Co-op/I option is open to undergraduate and graduate students in good standing in any discipline in ED3/4, AMP1/2, and any Master's level. All students must be currently enrolled in the Faculty of Architecture and have completed at least 85 credit hours toward a University degree at the time of the job placement. International students are required to obtain a valid Co-op work permit, prior to the start of any work term. The Co-op/I Coordinator is available to assist all students in the application process.
Schedule for students
September 25 – Student Info Session from 12:00 - 1:00 pm.
September 28 – Application deadline, read more in the Application process section.
2023– 2024 Application Form
September 29 & October 3 – Eligible students will be invited to meet for a Group Interview.
October 9 - 13 – Acceptance will be confirmed in writing by the Faculty of Architecture Co-op/I Program Coordinator.
November / January – New accepted students are required to join Career Skill Building Seminars.
November 3, 2023, 1:00-4:00pm - Resume & Cover Letter Seminar
January 19, 2024 1:00-4:00pm - Interview Preparation Seminar
February 8, 2024, 5:00-7:30pm - Portfolio Workshop
February to May – Job opportunities begin to be posted for student review, and will be continuously updated through to May. Students are invited to bring opportunities to the attention of the Co-op/I Coordinator, to be reviewed for appropriateness.
March – Students may apply for available opportunities and may be invited to interview for a position.
April – Students who are offered a position will accept or decline. Student who had planned to graduate in June will need to defer their graduation to October if awarded a Co-op placement for the summer, as you need to be an active student in the co-op course.
May – Students securing work placements will register for the appropriate EVDS (one credit) or ARCG (zero credit) Co-op/I Work Term course. This is a pass/fail course. Like all courses at the University of Manitoba, a registration fee will apply.
Summer – Students securing a paid work placements will work for a minimum of 10 weeks. Over the summer the Co-op/I Coordinator will schedule a mid-point check in (which may include an office visit) with the employer and student to discuss the work placement and the student’s performance.
August 17 – Deadline for submitting completed Work Term Report (only for students intending on graduating in October). To be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.
September 15 – Deadline for submitting completed Work Term Report. To be submitted to email@example.com.
Students participating in a summer work term may graduate in October; return to complete program requirements in Fall and Winter of the next academic year; proceed to graduate studies in the Fall (if already accepted); or complete a second consecutive work term. Situations will depend on student status and will be discussed on a case-by-case basis.
Admission to the Faculty of Architecture Cooperative Education/Integrated Work Program takes place annually with an application deadline of September 28, 2023.
Eligible students should submit completed applications by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Your application must consist of the following:
- an application form
- letter of interest (max. one page)
- portfolio (max. 15 MB) to email@example.com
Only complete applications will be considered for admission into the program.
Applicants will be required to participate in a group interview, as part of the admission process. All applicants will be informed of their application status in early December.
Begin your Co-op/I application
"The Co-op program is a great opportunity for the university and the profession to connect. Grounding students with real-world scenarios can be a huge eye-opener and by no means does this diminish the exploration offered through their academic experience. Similarly, it’s a great opportunity for practitioners to be reminded about where they came from and that architecture is most fruitful when ideas and exploration are integral to the practice."
— Glen Gross, Architect at 1x1 Architecture Inc.
The Faculty of Architecture’s Cooperative Education/Integrated Work Program strengthens partnerships between the University of Manitoba and employers in business, industry, community organizations and government. Co-op/I work terms help to develop skills and experience for the next generation of design professionals, and to broaden students’ awareness of local and global challenges facing the built environment in the 21st-century.
We welcome Co-op/I work term opportunities for Faculty of Architecture students in all disciplines for placements regionally, nationally, and internationally.
Employers must meet the following criteria to hire Co-op/I students from the Faculty of Architecture Cooperative Education/Integrated Work Program:
- Provide a paid full-time (minimum 35 hours per week) design or planning-related opportunity for a minimum of 10 consecutive weeks per 4-month term
- Participate in a mid-point check-in with the Co-op/I Coordinator (which may include an office visit)
- Conduct a performance evaluation meeting with the Co-op/I student near the end of the work term (form provided)
As industry leaders and mentors, we recognize that your interactions with Co-op/I students are crucial in their early career development. We encourage you to engage the student in as many of the following activities as possible:
- Training and orientation to the position and organization
- Regular meetings between the student and supervisor to discuss responsibilities and performance
- Opportunities to gain future career information and guidance
Posting and hiring
If you are interested in hiring a Co-op/I student from the Faculty of Architecture in a paid position, please fill out the Job Posting Submission Form or forward the following information to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Company and Job Title
- Job Location
- Length of term
- Job Description
- Job Requirements / Qualifications
- Application process (contact info)
Funding and opportunities
Manitoba Paid Work Experience Tax Credits
The Faculty of Architecture Co-op/I Program meets the Manitoba Government definition of a Co-op Program, making employers of Faculty of Architecture Co-op/I students eligible for the Manitoba Paid Work Experience Tax Credit. Employers who hire a student as part of a registered Cooperative Education Program may claim 15% of wages and salaries, up to a maximum of $5,000 per student. In addition, employers who hire and retain a graduate from a registered Cooperative Education Program may claim up to 15% of net wages and salaries in each of the first two years of employment, to a maximum of $2,500 per year.
Magnet Student Work Placement Program
The Magnet Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) brings together employers, students, and post-secondary school stakeholders to create quality work-integrated learning (WIL) opportunities. The program provides employers with wage subsidies to hire post-secondary students for paid work experiences. Students in turn benefit with quality work experience so they can secure employment in their chosen fields of study.
Talent Opportunities Program
The Talent Opportunities Program (TOP) is an initiative of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce designed to help employers located anywhere in Canada hire college and university students on work placements. Employers hiring eligible students may receive a wage subsidy up to up to 50% of the wages (to a maximum of $5,000) for each net new placement or 70% of the wages (to a maximum of $7,000) for each net new placement for the following under-represented groups: Indigenous people, person with disabilities, newcomer, first year student, visible minority and/or women in STEM.
ECO Canada offers a wage subsidy of up to 50% (maximum $5,000) to employers who hire current university or college students studying in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM) or Business. For an employment opportunity to be eligible for the funding, it must be 12-16 weeks in duration and possess an environmental capacity. Eligible employment opportunities could include work in sustainable design or green building.
Canada Summer Jobs
The Canada Summer Jobs initiative offers wage subsidies to employers who create summer job opportunities for secondary and post-secondary full-time students aged 15 to 30 who intend to return to their studies in the following academic year. Public and private sector employers may be eligible to receive funding for up to 50% of the provincial or territorial adult minimum hourly wage. Not-for-profit employers may be eligible to receive funding for up to 100% of the provincial or territorial minimum hourly wage in addition to reimbursement of mandatory employment related costs.
Frequently asked questions
When are students available for employment?
Students are normally available to work by the beginning in May of each year. Co-op/I work term opportunities are typically 4-months in length (May to August). The duration of a work term may be extended in 4-month increments (September to December, January to April) depending on the employers' needs and the students' academic situation.
When should I post a Co-op/I work opportunity?
Ideally, job opportunities should be forwarded in February for summer employment. This ensures time for the application, interview and decision-making process in advance of the students' end of term deadlines in April. However, job postings are accepted anytime.
Please note that posting a job opportunity early does not oblige you to hire a summer student should your business situation change. Please be aware that students are, naturally, keen to make decisions about their summer in advance of May.
Are both undergraduate and graduate students available for employment?
Yes. The Faculty of Architecture Co-op/I Program is open to Environmental Design undergraduate students in year 3 and 4 from all disciplines (Architecture, Interior Environments, and Landscape + Urbanism), Architecture Masters Preparation students, and Graduate Students in Architecture, City Planning, Interior Design, and Landscape Architecture.
What hourly wage should a Co-op/I student be paid?
There are no predetermined rates of pay for Co-op/I students. Employers are welcome to determine an appropriate wage based on the student’s level of education and experience.
Is assistance available for the application review and interview process?
Yes. Employers may choose to have students apply directly to their firm or via the Co-op/I Office. The Co-op/I Coordinator and Academic Liaison can assist in any aspect of the process, including: pre-reviewing applications, arranging interviews, and/or providing interview space in the Faculty of Architecture. Contact email@example.com to discuss your preferred arrangement.
Is funding available for hiring a Co-op/I student?
Yes, please visit the funding opportunities section for further details.