Co-op in Biology

Co-operative Education is an academic program that integrates study with paid, discipline-related work experience. Co-op students gain an enriched understanding of their academic program through practical application. In addition they refine their employability skills, gain an understanding of career opportunities in their field, and gain an understanding of the realities of the workplace.

To graduate with the Co-op Option, students complete three 4-month Co-op work terms (with an optional fourth) or a 12- or 16-month internship between their third and fourth years of study. Students that complete three Co-op work terms, or an internship, will receive 3 credit-hours, counting as one elective course for graduation requirements.

Students typically enrol in Co-op at the beginning of their second year of study, but third-year students are also welcome. A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 is required.

All Co-op students attend workshops and receive one-on-one coaching in job preparation skills such as resume and cover letter writing, interview preparation, business ethics, and more.

For further details on Co-op, please visit the Co-op website.

Visit the Biology Department.

Student Testimonials

tl_files/sites/co-op/resources/Ryosuke Ishigami.jpg"Before I joined the Co-op program, I had no idea about my future. Co-op changed my life.

I gained many remarkable experiences outside of the classroom, the opportunity to meet different people, and have gained a more professional view of my field of study. I have become more confident in myself and open-minded about my future possibilities.

Nothing can substitute experience. If you want to change your life, start now!"

Ryosuke Ishigami
'11 BSc Biology (Co-op Option)

Co-op Work Terms
        - Assistant Wildlife Technician - Large Manmals, Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resource, Wildlife Division, Kentville, NS
        - Lab Technician, Acadia University, Dr. Kirk Hillier (8 months), Wolfville, NS

tl_files/sites/co-op/resources/Laura_Hartman.jpg"Throughout my five years at Acadia, there were so many decisions and tough choices I had to make.  The best decision I made was the decision to take the Co-op option.  I went through 4, educational and fulfilling Co-op work terms.  Some were better than others, but I learned and grew through all of them. 

The reason I enrolled in Co-op was to see all the options Biology had to offer other than being a Doctor, so I immersed myself in microbiology, insect behaviour, working with endangered birds and a job in the marine side of things.  My second work term involved the amazing opportunity to work in Germany, one of the best experiences of my life.

I have learned the areas of biology I really enjoy, the work I prefer and I have also learned so much about myself.  Co-op has also given me an outstanding resume.  As a graduate applying to jobs, I have so many skills, past work experiences and references I can add to my resume that helps it stand above the rest.  I've had interviewers comment on all the great experience I have, as well as my interviewing skills that I gained throughout Co-op. 

As a graduating student with the Co-op option, I can happily say I have learned so much about biology and myself.  It's a great feeling to have a leading edge against biology graduates who haven't taken Co-op!"

Laura Hartman
'10
 BSc Biology (Co-op Option)

Co-op Work Terms
        - Food Microbiology Co-op Student, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Atlantic Food and Horticulture Research Station, Kentville, NS
        - RISE - Research Internships in Science and Engineering, German Academic Exchange Service, Bielefield, North Rhine - Westphalia, Germany
        - Field Technician, Bluenose Coastal Action Foundation, Mahone Bay, NS
        - Technician in Marine Benthic Ecology, Fisheries and Oceans Canada-Ecosystem Research Division, Dartmouth, NS