Candidate for Honours Bachelor of Applied Science, Systems Design Engineering
Prior to Manulife, I completed my 3 co-op terms in a small technical company in various roles and cities within Canada. Everyone knew each other, and having lunch with the CEO or the VP was a regular occurrence.
When I walked the busy streets of Yonge and Bloor, then into the Manulife building on my first day, dressed as if I was walking into an interview, I knew it was going to be very different experience. Manulife Financial had a Tim Hortons, a cafeteria with a breakfast item named after them, their own mail system, gym, library, and health center. At first, it was hard to adjust to the culture of a large company, but soon after I was very grateful for the experience.
As a co-op student pursuing Project Management, I was given responsibilities that suited my skills and personality. Meetings occurred over teleconference with Manulife employees and their vendors all
over the world. Working from home was a regular occurrence in my department, even for the co-op students. Many of the team members were located in the Kitchener office and I had the opportunity to travel for some of the face-to-face meetings. In my department I met many great people, and was treated as one of their own instead of an outsider co-op student.
The co-op program is also very well developed. There were projects for the co-op students every term which is something students can learn from
and be proud of.
I had the opportunity to take on a cross-border project as the project manager, working with coop students in various offices and business/project sponsors just as one would in any business projects.
Within a few weeks, I was also assigned a mentor from another department which gave me a better understanding of how the company works and the vast opportunities that are available in the future with
It was hard to adjust to the culture of a large company, but soon after I was very grateful for the experience.
Throughout my co-op term, I was able to take advantage of the opportunities to learn and develop outside of work. I was able to volunteer in the Walk for Memories event as a Manulife representative, participate in
training sessions such as "How to effectively manage your time" while learning tips and tricks passed down from other Manulife employees, and attend a volunteer fair where many non-profit organizations gathered
in a room to explain opportunities to volunteer through Manulife-organized events such as the Habitat for Humanity to build houses in Toronto.
I was very pleased with my co-op experience at Manulife Financial, and am proud to represent the company as a Campus Ambassador.
Don't miss the...2012 JOB FAIR!
- Network, connect, learn
- Wednesday February 1, 2012 from 10:00am-3:30pm at Bingemans Conference Centre.
- For more information, visit Partners for Employment.