Co-op Programs in Canada for Indian Students

Co-op Programs in Canada for Indian Students

Surya Rathee Surya Rathee
[Published 13 May, 2024 | 12:24 PM]
About Author - 6 min read

Did you know? You can study and work in your field of study in Canada simultaneously.

Yes! It is possible through Co-op Programs in Canada.

Many students apply for a Canada study visa from India to pursue higher education in some of the best educational institutions. Some universities have co-op programs as a part of the requirement to complete your degree.

Co-op programs help students gain work experience in their field of study while studying at the same time. This allows students to apply theoretical knowledge in a real-world world work environment and transition to the professional world more easily.

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What are Co-op Programs in Canada?

Co-op programs in Canada help students study and work simultaneously. These programs offer practical knowledge to students within the university courses’ curriculum. Students are paid as per the roles provided by the collaborative effort of universities and Canadian companies, which students can use towards their tuition fees and other expenses.

Every university has a different process for co-op. But basically, the goal of the program is to help students reflect on their educational and career goals, and build practical skills that will benefit them in the future. International students in Canada can apply for co-op programs, and make their study experience beneficial.

Benefits of Choosing a Co-op Program for International Students

Along with the work experience that students gain while studying in Canada, the co-op program offers many benefits:

  • Industry-relevant experience

Students gain experience related to their field of study and develop professional skills that are required to get their dream job. The skills can include resume writing, community with teams, and networking with other professionals in the field.

  • Paid work

The costs of studying in Canada are getting higher with every passing year. Enrolling in a co-op course in Canada means paid employment, which you can use to pay your school fees and other living expenses. But since these programs pay industry standard rates, you’ll know your worth when you discuss salaries with employers in the future.

  • Career Opportunities

Many graduate programs and internships do not allow students to work for other employers. But that’s not the case with co-op programs in Canada. You are allowed to work for different employers in every work term. This gives you a competitive edge when applying for graduate roles.

  • Collaboration

Companies in Canada collaborate with universities on co-op programs, which means that the co-op roles are evaluated as a part of your study program. You have experience in getting feedback, improving skills and collaborating with other professionals. The guidance you receive through a co-op is vital and can benefit you reflect on your professional and career goals.

Benefits of Choosing a Co-op Program for International Students

Difference Between Co-op Courses and Internships

Both co-op and internships are meant to provide work experiences to students through which they can gain practical knowledge and skills in their respective fields of study. But there are key differences.

Co-op positions are mainly paid work that aligns with Canadian industry standards. On the other hand, internships may or may not be paid, and even if they are, the pay is less than usual than that of regular full-time staff.

As for the duration, co-op positions are longer in duration compared to internships. Why? Universities set work items for co-op students as some courses require more than a week-long term.

Lastly, co-op programs in Canada are highly structured and typically offer more supervision and challenging work. Internships are organized through a close collaboration between universities and companies.

Talk To An Expert

Who is eligible?

Some Canadian study programs include work experience as part of their curriculum. Meet the following eligibility requirements to apply for a co-op or intern work permit:

  • You must have a valid study permit
  • You are required to work to complete your study program
  • You must have a letter from your school, confirming all students in the program are required to complete work placements to get their degree
  • Your co-op placement or internship sums up to 50% or less of your study program.

Who isn’t eligible?

You will not be able to apply for a co-op work permit if you are taking one of the following:

  • English as a Second Language (ESL) or French as a Second Language (FSL)
  • General Interest Courses
  • Course to prepare for another study program

How to Apply?

Many universities in Canada offer co-op programs. International students, whether enrolled in undergraduate or postgraduate degrees, can apply for a co-op program after they are admitted to a Canadian university. Depending on what you are studying, the requirements for the program can vary. If you are confused about which co-op to apply for, visit your department’s official co-op website and get advice on which roles to apply that will align with your career goals.

To study a co-op program in Canada, you need to apply for a co-op work permit. If you have a study permit, the process for co-op work permits in Canada is straightforward, and you just need to apply online.

Canada Study Visa Approval in 20 Days

Studying in Canada can be a rewarding experience that opens doors to research opportunities and shapes your future. However, it’s important to know about the co-op programs that could help you gain knowledge about work in the real world and prepare you when you transition into the workplace.

Need help? Talk to the best immigration consultants in India to apply for a study visa, and make your dream of studying in Canada a reality.

Get a free consultation session and determine the best option to apply for your situation.

Call us@ +91 92 92 92 92 81 or email us at

Good Luck!

Read More: Study Visa to Canada PR: Step-By-Step Guide


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