How students interact with WatPD

WatPD helps all Waterloo undergraduate students develop their professional skills and increase their employability. While all undergraduates are welcome to take advantage of WatPD's programming, their interaction with the department varies depending on their program of study. 

Co-op students

Co-op students complete a series of online professional development (PD) courses as part of their co-op degree requirements. 

  • Students should successfully complete two compulsory PD courses before enrolling themselves in a series of electives. The specific courses taken, terms in which they're taken, and total number of courses taken varies depending on their faculty and/or program. Students typically complete one PD course per work term, and all PD courses are completed during work terms except for PD1: Career Fundamentals, which is taking during the term preceding a student's first work term.
  • Not all elective PD courses are offered every term. Students can consult a table on the WatPD website to make sure the courses they want to take are offered during their next work term. 
  • Students don't pay any additional fees to take PD courses. The WatPD program also isn't funded by the co-op fee. 
  • Students are still required to complete PD courses during work terms in which they don't have a job if they haven't completed their PD requirements yet. Students can complete all of the assessments in every PD course without being employed.

Non-co-op students

Non-co-op students can complete EDGE, WatPD's experiential education certificate program. EDGE helps students in regular programs of study explore their career options, develop their professional skills, and market themselves to employers. 

  • EDGE is a voluntary, no-fee academic certificate. Students can opt into EDGE by completing the registration form on the EDGE website. 
  • Students need to earn six milestones to complete EDGE:
    • One skills identification and articulation workshop
    • One career development course
    • Three work or community experiences
    • One capstone workshop
  • EDGE students can take PD courses as part of completing several milestones. They can take the EDGE version of PD1 to earn their career development course milestone, and they need to pair elective PD courses with co-curricular or extracurricular experiences to earn work or community milestones.

For more information about EDGE, visit the EDGE website.