50th Anniversary - Co-operative Education at the University of Regina

The Co-operative Education and Internship department here at the University of Regina is celebrating a major milestone this year: 

2019 is the 50th Anniversary of Co-op Education at the University of Regina!

On December 4, 2019, the University of Regina celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Co-operative Education Program at the University of Regina.

“Fifty years ago the University of Saskatchewan’s Regina Campus – now the University of Regina – began an innovative work/study program which enabled engineering students to alternate semesters of study with semesters of paid work,” said University of Regina President and Vice-Chancellor Dr. Vianne Timmons. “Thanks to the pioneering efforts of John Mantle, the first Dean of the Faculty of Engineering, and faculty member Dr. Cameron Blachford, the first 21 engineering students were placed in paid positions in January 1970.

“No longer just available to engineering students, co-operative education has grown to become a vital stand-alone program serving the University of Regina and is a key reason why many students choose to study here.”

The first of its kind in Western Canada, the Co-operative Education and Internships program as it is now known, has provided experiential learning opportunities to thousands of students who have gained practical career related experience, built relationships with employers and generated income supporting their educational aspirations.

“My Co-op experience led to me finding a full-time position even before I graduated,” said Astha Sharma, a Nepalese international student who recently graduated from the University of Regina Kenneth Levene Graduate School of Business. “Without participating in Co-op, I never would have gained the experience or the contacts to land the job I now have. Co-op was the best decision I made while taking my Masters’ degree,” she added.

Co-op Education and Internships serves a broad range of employers, both locally and nationally, and students studying in many disciplines, including Business, Engineering, Science, Arts, Actuarial Science, La Cité (French and Francophone Cultural Studies), plus Indigenous Career Education. Over the last decade, the program has witnessed in excess of 60% placement growth.

In 2022, Co-operative Education and Internships also celebrated another major milestone: 930 career-related placements were recorded with $12.5 million in salaries earned. This is an all-time annual record number of placements for the program.

We want to thank all the Co-op and Internship employers throughout the years that have helped make this program such an amazing
success over the past half-century.

Fifty years of building futures and still going strong!