- Taking on the world, one co-op term at a time
- JobMine down temporarily
- Tuesday's notes
- Brandon Sweet
- Communications and Public Affairs
Taking on the world, one co-op term at a time
We all hope for that perfect co-op term- the one that offers education and excitement in equal measure and gives us the chance to explore our field in meaningful ways. But what’s a co-op student to do if they don’t see their dream job amid the postings on JobMine? Sometimes you have to branch out on your own to find exactly the job you want. The rewards are worth the extra effort and time.
No one knows this better than Simon McKenzie (above), a 3A Architecture student whose two “arranged own” co-op terms have taken him from India to Denmark, with a whole of architectural experience and adventure along the way.
For his first work term, Simon had one goal: to escape the bitter Canadian winter somewhere warm. After individually contacting over 100 firms in the southern hemisphere, he found a job at KGD Studios in Bangalore, India. The ambitious, overworked atmosphere at KGD offered Simon unusual responsibility and many opportunities for creative freedom. He took charge of the design and completion of an entire building for a nation-wide competition- including all digital models, diagrams, drawings, and final presentation material.
“They just handed me the outline and said, ‘We want it submitted in three days. The client wants it iconic and sustainable. Go!’” Simon says. “So, it was a little bit stressful but really fun to have that opportunity.”
And was Simon’s design chosen? “Funny story about that,” he chuckles. “It didn’t get submitted.” The courier delivering the design stopped in at a pub to watch the semi-final game of the cricket world cup. This detour caused the design to arrive half an hour late- so it wasn’t accepted. “The good news is India won the semi-finals and went on to win the cup. So there was a silver lining.”
Outside of work, Simon revelled in the food, weather, and atmosphere of India, venturing north to visit the Taj Mahal and other architectural gems. He spent his last week in India scuba diving off the Andaman Islands, sleeping on the beach and relaxing before his return to the fast-paced student life. Not bad for a first co-op term!
Next, Simon set his sights on Europe, securing a co-op job in the R&D department of 3XN, a Danish architectural firm. Here, he was involved with the design and build of a test kitchen for chefs from NOMA, the world’s best restaurant.
“They wanted a food lab where they could design and experiment with recipes. They use different ingredients to make something new and innovative that you could eat,” explains Simon. The project was unique because in addition to being involved with the design of custom features (such as coffee tables, glassware trolleys, and shelving), he also helped to complete construction on the room itself.
“It was really cool to see the things that I’d designed on the computer come back to me from the miller, and be able to actually build it on a physical form. Especially as a student, I don’t usually get to see my projects realized,” says Simon.
Besides the great architectural experience, there was an unexpected benefit of working for the world’s best restaurant: a five-hour long, 20 course feast cooked by the NOMA chefs which Simon describes as “the most amazing meal I’ll ever have in my life.”
Simon returned from his co-op term excited to apply his new skills and knowledge to his studies. Both co-op terms have been professionally and personally rewarding: “I learned a tremendous amount about architecture. More than that, I had a phenomenal cultural experience and learned a lot about myself.”
JobMine down temporarily
JobMine, the online system that Co-operative Education & Career Action (CECA) uses to help manage the uWaterloo recruitment process, will be shut down on August 8 and 9 for planned maintenance.
During the shutdown all Waterloo user access will be temporarily unavailable. To minimize inconvenience to users, the timing of the shutdown was designed to coincide with the point in the term when user traffic is lowest, i.e., on-campus employer interviews are finished and most students are writing exams.
Well, it was a fun couple of weeks away, but I'm back from vacation. I would like to thank my colleagues Matthew Bondy and Stacey Ash for keeping the Daily Bulletin going during my absence.
Link of the day
When and where
Examination period begins July 30, runs to August 10, 2012. Details.
Centre for Career Action workshop on law school applications, Thursday, August 9, 12:00 p.m., TC 1208.
Water Institute Seminar Series featuring Dr. Everton de Oliveira, State University of São Paulo at Rio Claro, Brazil, “Water compensation: A breakthrough to make it happen?”, Friday, August 10, 10:00 a.m., DC 1304.
UWRC Book Club, "The Sentimentalists" by Johanna Skibsrud, Wednesday, August 15, 12:00 p.m., LIB 407.
Mathematics Faculty Honeybun Reunion, Saturday, August 18. Details.
CTE656 Getting Started in LEARN, session 0039, Tuesday, August 21, 10:00 a.m., FLEX Lab, LIB 329. Register through myHRinfo.
International Spouses event: "Singin' in the Rain" (with Gene Kelly)
Sunday, August 26 at 1:00 p.m. Must pre-register. See website for details.
Fall 2012 Promissory Notes and payments are due August 27.
CTE656 Getting Started in LEARN, session 0040, Wednesday, August 29, 1:00 p.m., FLEX Lab, LIB 329. Register through myHRinfo.
PhD Oral Defences
Kinesiology. Kathryn Zuj, "Analysis of Transcranial Doppler Ultrasound Waveform Morphology for the Assessment of Cerebrovascular Hemodynamics." Supervisor, Richard Hughson. On display in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences graduate office, BMH 3110. Oral defence Thursday, August 9, 9:00 a.m., BMH 3119.
Psychology. Lana Ozen, "The Investigation of Long-term Cognitive Changes after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury using Novel and Sensitive Measures." Supervisor, Myra Fernandes. On deposit in the Faculty of Arts Graduate Office, PAS 2434. Oral defence Thursday, August 9, 10:00 a.m., PAS 3026.
Biology. Adriano Senatore, "Alternative Splicing of Lymnaea CAv3 and NALCN Ion Channel Genes Serves to Alter Biophysical Properties, Membrane Expression, and Ion Selectivity." Supervisor, David Spafford. On deposit in the Faculty of Science Graduate Office, ESC-254A. Oral defence Thursday, August 9, 1:00 p.m., C2 278.
Chemical Engineering. Suad Al-Adwani, "Predicting the Effect of Catalyst Axial Active Site Distributions on a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst Performance." Supervisors, William Epling, Joao Soares. On deposit in the Engineering Graduate Office, PHY 3004. Oral defence Friday, August 10, 2:00 p.m., E6 4002.