How Your Interests and Values Tie Into Your Experience

Today’s topic will be focused on how your interests and values tie into your co-op/work/volunteer experience. Contributing to work that is meaningful to you can be a driving force in what you choose to pursue. It can be helpful to consider your values when exploring potential careers of interest. In today’s topic, students share their stories in how they emphasize their own personal interests through work or volunteer experience.

What do you find meaningful about your work/volunteer experience? What motivates you to continue to show up/contribute?


“Through my past co-op experiences, I’ve learned that I value connections I make through my employment. Enjoying the actual work that I do is extremely important to be able to get motivated about your experience. However, for me what matters the most is liking the people I work with. Interacting with people from different walks of life, talking to them about their experiences, and so on, is the one thing that truly motivates me to continue to do what I do. These connections I’ve built are all very valuable to me, and I believe that they will last a long time as well. Each person I talk to gives me another perspective, another opinion, and it really helps me grow to be the best that I can be.”

Lal Sekercioglu, 3B, Arts & Business (Visual Culture)

We’ve also seen a connection between the work that we do and our motivation to actually do it. This term, we were both very fortunate to be able to work on various projects, (including this one!), that allowed us to work on something that we care about. When doing something that we enjoy, it feels like we’re making a huge contribution to the team which really helps with our ability to showcase our competencies to colleagues.

What are some of the goals you have and how has your co-op/work/volunteer experience helped you achieve these goals? What motivates you to keep working towards these goals?


“I came into this term very apprehensive; it was my first co-op term and it just so happened to be completely virtual. Because of this, my goals going into the term shifted a little bit. I’m sort of a granny (no offense to all the grandmothers out there) when it comes to technology, so I was very stressed about how I would adapt. I made it my goal to first and foremost be patient with myself. This new virtual landscape is daunting. It makes communication more difficult and is riddled with technical difficulties, so failures here and there are okay and would only help me grow. My second goal was to become comfortable improving all the foundational skills I set out to improve (customer service skills, communicational skills, etc.) while also learning how to engage with technology in a meaningful way. Working online with a group as wonderful as the CCA team really helped me achieve these goals. Everyone has been so kind, patient, and always open to questions. While working around people who are always striving to improve and do their best, it was easy for me to adopt self-improvement as a motivation as well and achieve my goals of becoming more comfortable with working virtually.” 

- Nicole McLuhan, 3A, Honours Sociology and Legal Studies

The drive to continue to achieve meaningful goals can be based on what motivates you and the desire to learn something new. Don’t be afraid to try new things and to be open-minded to new experiences. Find experiences and participate in activities that you value!