Co-op information for undergraduate students

Political Science students love co-op because it enables them to use their education in a practical way while developing professional workplace skills and contacts. It also allows them to experience a variety of workplaces and earn while they learn!

Co-op terms normally alternate with academic terms after the second year of study. Before to your first co-op term, you'll complete a series of seminars to prepare you for the co-op experience and your career. Topics include skills assessment, résumé and cover letter preparation, interview skills and succeeding in the workplace.

Securing a co-op position is competitive. Most co-op opportunities are posted on Learning in Motion, a password-protected website used by students to create résumés and cover letters (but you can develop your own jobs too). You'll apply for a range of jobs in a variety of locations to increase your chances of success.

If the employer shortlists you, you will make it to the interview stage and hopefully become the successful candidate for that co-op position.


Sarah Atkinson, Co-op student Sarah Atkinson

Congratulations to Political Science undergrad student, Sarah Atkinson, who was nominated for a Co-op Student of the Year award for her work at the Canadian Embassy in China in Spring 2020. Sarah was recalled from her internship in China just a few weeks in, but continued to provide support remotely after returning to Canada, first from Victoria and then from Ottawa. Sarah won an honourable mention an honorarium for her incredible contributions to the workplace as a political science co-op student.

Who hires Political Science co-op students?

Political Science Co-op students work in government, in private sector and for non-profit organizations in Victoria, across Canada, and beyond.

Some recent co-op organizations include: BC Ministry of Health Services, BC Ministry of Community and Rural Development, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Canadian Border Service Agency, Tourism Victoria, Neverblue Media Inc., POLIS Water Project Society for Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA).

What type of work do Political Science co-op students do on their co-op terms?

Political Science students work in government, in private sector and for non-profit organizations in Greater Victoria, across Canada, and beyond. Co-op positions offer students work experience in research, policy analysis and development, project management, communitty development and media/communications.

Admission to and participation in co-op

To qualify for acceptance into the Social Sciences Co-op Program as a political science student, you must be a full-time student intending to declare a major in political science, who has a 5.0 GPA overall and a 5.0 GPA in political science.

You can apply for co-op in your second year or no later than the first term of your third year. You must also take Political Science 351 and achieve a B or better before your second co-op term.

The deadline to apply is September 15 and January 15 of each year. Pick up an application form from the Social Sciences Co-op office (DTB A102) or on the Social Sciences website.

If you successfully complete the required number terms (currently four) you can graduate with co-op designation on your degree.

More information on the Undergraduate Co-op program is available in the University of Victoria Calendar.