Information for

You are here

Co-op at Waterloo

Waterloo co-op student holding camera on Brooklyn Bridge in New York

Marissa, a Waterloo Architecture student, spent a co-op work term in New York City adding international experience to her skills and outlook.

What is co-op?

Co-op allows you to combine paid work experience with your academic studies. At Waterloo, you'll normally spend 4 months in school followed by 4 months in a paid job relating to your program. We'll help you apply to jobs and support you during your work terms.

Earn your degree from a global leader in co-op. With more than 19,000 students in co-op, Waterloo offers the largest and oldest co-op program in Canada. You pay tuition only when you're in school and you'll graduate with up to 2 years of hands-on experience in your area of interest.

Why choose co-op at Waterloo?

Explore career areas

By alternating work and study terms, you can try different careers to see what you like (or dislike!) before you graduate.

Gain valuable skills

Improve your interview skills and learn to succeed on the job – all crucial career skills. Read more about how co-op works.

Pay for school

Waterloo co-op students earn, on average, $45,000 to $85,000 over the course of their degree. And typically earn 15% more upon graduation.

6,700 employers

Waterloo has more co-op employers than any other university. More employers means more jobs and a broader range of experience.

Smaller student loans

Waterloo co-op students have smaller student loans than other students and are more successful at paying them back.

Build a network

The people you'll meet during co-op work terms can be a great help once you graduate, providing references or tips about job opportunities.


Waterloo co-op = career success

79%of Waterloo co-op grads earn $50,000+compared to 38% of Ontario graduates 2 years after graduation
87%of our co-op grads work in jobs related to their programcompared to 79% of all Ontario graduates 6 months after graduation
91%employment rate for Waterloo co-op gradscompared to 87% of graduates in Ontario 6 months after graduation

Who should choose co-op?

  • If you're not sure what you want to do after university, use co-op to explore possible careers.
    • With 4 to 6 work terms and by viewing the tens of thousands of co-op jobs posted at Waterloo each year, you'll see what types careers are possible.
  • If you have a career in mind, use co-op make contacts who could help you – or even hire you – when you graduate.
  • If you'd like to continue your education after Waterloo but not sure in which area, co-op work terms can introduce you to many specialized fields within your area of interest.

Learn more about co-op