Life at WatPD

What’s it like working at WatPD? We’re firm believers in cultivating a supportive, encouraging workplace environment. Our supervisors care about giving our student hires meaningful, valuable work and encouraging personal growth.

We hire students from every Waterloo faculty, giving students with a wide range of experiences and perspectives the chance to work together. Finally, our students have the opportunity to pursue personal interests on campus and develop relationships that last beyond the duration of a work term.

Here are a few of the activities and features that make a work term at WatPD special:

Presentations

The ability to deliver effective, compelling presentations is a skill that’s useful within almost every organization, no matter the level of the position. WatPD’s co-op students develop this skill by creating and delivering a 15-minute presentation on a work-appropriate topic of their choice.

Presenting to their student peers and full-time staff helps students refine their public speaking, presentation, communication, project management, and research skills. Whether they’re presenting on the biomechanics of gait or time spent at Mount Everest’s base camp, students have the chance to shine.

Team building

WatPD’s co-op students pride themselves on planning and throwing a few team building events on Friday afternoons during each term. Taking an active role in organizing team building gives students an opportunity to develop their teamwork and project management skills, and it’s a great way to build relationships with other co-op students and WatPD staff. Past team building activities have included movie trivia, scavenger hunts, board games, potluck lunches, and mini-game competitions. What kind of event would you create?

Supervisors who care

Many of our WatPD staffers have spent dozens of terms supervising co-op students. Students who spend a term with WatPD can expect a thorough orientation, regular check-ins, support for reflection and robust goal setting, and evaluations that help them excel in future work terms and beyond.

Lasting relationships

Students who enjoy their time with WatPD often have the opportunity to complete part-time marking work for the department during their academic terms. In addition to serving as a source of income, part-time marking is a great way for students to stay connected to WatPD after finishing their work term. Some co-op students also return to WatPD for additional work terms, during which they assume additional responsibilities and take a leadership role among that term’s TAs.