For many students, a co-op placement is a chance to test drive a potential career. We talked to Rand, a local grade 12 student, about her expectations before starting her placement at Hawkins and Co Accounting.

Workforce WindsorEssex connected with Rand through our Experiential Learning Hub.

Follow Rand’s journey through co-op here on the Test Drive blog.

What made you decide to take co-op?

I like exploring different options in my life, and I didn’t want to spend the last semester of high school in a classroom. When I found out I can instead spend my entire day working in a new environment where I’ll gain more experience I had to take it.

How did you prepare for this co-op?

I was asked to prepare a presentation, and so I did along with my resume and cover letter that I ran by my co-op teacher. I did the interview and in the second semester I took the pre-placement course. I was taught about health and safety, workplace violence and WHMIS and got certificates for them. I was also taught about appropriate behaviours and the importance of confidentiality in the workplace.

What volunteering have you done in the past?

I have mostly volunteered with the school on events and helped with set painting in grade nine. After I began volunteering for Hospice and helped out with their fundraising events such as triathlons and their 5k run/walk.

How else are you learning about your future career options?

Besides school, I liked to research all about different studies I wanted to pursue. I browsed university programs and college programs until I found the one that was most interesting to me. That research led me to be interested in different accounting programs and I ended up deciding to do my co-op at an accounting firm

What is your dream job?

I want to be an auditor after I finish my education. Its such an interesting job I believe, and accounting is how I will get there. First I want to work with people, give them advice and then move on to checking the legitimacy of businesses. I really want to stay with accounting for a while though first so I can get a lot of experience.

How do you think this placement will help your future career path?

This placement will help me with my future by showing me the day to day life of an accountant. I want to learn if this is the right choice for me and this will help me really make an educated decision

What are you most looking forward to about this placement?

I’m looking foreword to meeting new people and exploring this aspect of society. It’s a very different thing than the traditional classroom and a text book, so I’m excited to try it out.