Lindy Bryanton and Anne Shaw Co-op Students of the Year
UPEI was one of 78 colleges and universities across Canada celebrating National Co-operative Education Week from March 21-25. A highlight of the week was the selection of Co-op Students of the Year, one in Computer Science and one in Business. The University has announced that Lindy Bryanton and Anne Shaw are this year's award winners.
Lindy Bryanton comes from Kensington. She studied civil engineering at McGill University before joining the Co-op Education Program at UPEI where she is an honours student in Computer Science. She has completed four work terms with companies such as Deltaware in Charlottetown and Gognos Inc., a data access and modeling company in Ottawa.
"Lindy is a great ambassador for our Co-operative Education Program," says Wayne Cutcliffe, Associate Professor of Computer Science and Information Technology. "She excels academically, in her computer science studies, as well as in the workplace. Her enthusiasm is infectious, even when handling heavy workloads. These qualities are recognized by her Co-op employers who speak very highly of her accomplishments, and how easily she integrates with their employees."
Anne Shaw is an honours Business Administration student from Bloomfield. She has completed her Co-op work terms in the Rebates Division of the Canada Revenue Agency where she was commended for her high level of integrity, cooperation, and professionalism. The fact that she is fluently bilingual was also a strong asset. "Anne is a very deserving student and we congratulate her on her achievements," says Business Co-op Coordinator, Don MacCormac. "This award exemplifies the high quality of work our Co-op students are capable of conducting during their work terms."
Co-operative education is proving itself as a valuable tool for employers looking for bright, enthusiastic students who will meet their future staffing needs. A recent study of students and employers by the University of Victoria revealed that approximately 60 per cent of graduating Co-op students will accept a position with an employer with whom they completed a Co-op work term.
"Co-operative Education has a proven track record in Canada and internationally," says Canadian Association for Co-operative Education (CAFCE) President, Sonya Horsburgh. "Co-operative education programs provide students with alternating study and paid work semesters, allowing them to accumulate experience in the workplace while obtaining their education. Through their Co-op work terms, students become aware of the range of new qualifications today's workplace requires, can develop their innate potential, and will acquire essential employability skills."
A study conducted by the Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission has found that students who graduate with the Co-op option are more successful in securing employment in their fields, and they do so more quickly than other students. Co-op graduates have less student debt, and they are paid at a higher level. UPEI now offers Co-operative education programs in Computer Science, Business, and Physics. Co-op students have successfully completed work terms with a range of PEI businesses and government departments. In addition, they have taken advantage of work term opportunities in other parts of Canada, as well as in international locations such as Scotland, Ireland, and New Zealand.