Skill development for transition to a digital workplace

University of Waterloo students working at St. Joseph's Hospital.

COVID-19 has had a profound effect on every aspect of our lives. The University of Waterloo is committed to creating a brighter outlook for our students and employers. Many businesses are at risk because they lack a strong digital approach. By equipping our students with the digital skills and talents to find work and make a significant contribution to organizations of all kinds, Waterloo is paving the road to a strong future.

Here are three ways you can equip yourself now to succeed in an ever-changing and complex world of work.


1) Enrol in the Digital Skills Fundamentals course – learn the skills most needed in business today and tomorrow.

We have partnered with Stratford School of Interaction Design and BusinessVidyard, Larry Smith (Director and Founder, The Problem Lab), Kiite Academy and Shopify to deliver the mini-courses they have created so you can build your digital skills!

These mini-courses will introduce you to the fundamental concepts of website development, digital and video marketing, and problem analysis. The course bundle will be offered to all students beginning the week of May 11, 2020 at no charge. You can take all mini-courses or sign up for any of the mini-courses individually. You don’t need to have any previous experience in any of these areas of expertise.

The introductory mini-courses are:

  • It takes about 30 hours to complete the entire set of mini-courses in the Digital Skills Fundamentals course.
  • This course can be taken in part or in its entirety. There is no time limit on its completion.
  • There is no set sequence or order that these courses need to be taken in.
  • These courses are self-directed and not for credit. They are intended to augment your existing skills and provide you with new skills that could be useful in today’s workforce.
  • Students who satisfactorily complete the self-directed assignments, quizzes, and activities related to each topic are eligible to receive a digital badge in Digital Skills Fundamentals.

To enrol in the mini-courses above, follow the instructions to access self-registration courses and search for “Digital Skills – Fundamentals” on the Self-Registration page in LEARN. 

Are you getting ready to start your first year at the University of Waterloo? Incoming students have been automatically enrolled in the Digital Skills Fundamentals course on LEARN as part of Waterloo Ready.

Material may be added over the next few weeks and students should sign up through LEARN for course announcements.

2) Sign up for the webinar series: "How to find a co-op job for Spring 2020"

In this three-part webinar series, running weekly in May (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays), you'll uncover strategies to identify and enhance your skills, build your résumé, understand the nuances of working remotely, navigate the labour market, and hone your ability to impress during virtual interviews.

The three topics covered are:

  • Personal Branding & Resumes
  • Work Search & Virtual Networking
  • Virtual Interviews

3) Visit the Digital Skills and Technological Agility Resource Base (coming soon)

All students will have access to a list of high-quality, free learning resources that are available from the University of Waterloo or on external websites. You can create your own learning path and choose the courses to build your digital skillset. Stay tuned for a link to this exclusive list of resources to sharpen your skillset!


Why take this course?

Waterloo employers have said that the digital skills in these programs are much needed in their organizations, especially in the current climate. Digital literacy and technological savvy are critical skill sets that will be needed in small and medium businesses in particular.

Take advantage of these resources, upgrade your skills and look for job opportunities to utilize your knowledge. By taking part, you can help build economic recovery by bringing these valued skills to businesses. These digital skills can make a difference in our current job search for spring or fall work terms, particularly as many organizations continue to operate remotely.

Our team at CEE is working hard with employers to see how students with these skills can help meet business needs.