For the past several years EDN has hired students participating in Co-operative Education Programs from universities such as Dalhousie, Saint Mary’s, Mount Saint Vincent, and Acadia. Work terms run for four months during the Fall, Winter, and Summer. The position is open to all co-op students.
Here’s what some of our previous co-op students had to say about their work terms:
Luxin (Rita) Lai (Fall 2014)
My work term at EDN was my first Co-op placement, as well as my first job in Canada. EDN has been such a rewarding and fantastic experience for me. There were always new exciting things to work on; I never got bored and it really helped me to figure out which areas of business I enjoy most, and what I want to do in the future. Brian and Archie were great to work with and really made me feel like an important part of EDN team. One of the things I enjoyed being a part of the team was the interview process for hiring the subsequent Project Coordinator; after being interviewed by employers a number of times, it was a valuable learning experience to be on the other side of the desk. Access-A-Pro, the Entrepreneurs Market and the Holiday Social, events which took place during my work term, were great opportunities to get to know EDN members, as well as other community partners.
Brian and Archie encouraged me to attend as many board meetings and committee meetings as I wanted and to share my ideas. Brian and Archie both had a 100% open-door policy and made me feel welcome and comfortable from the first day. The environment in EDN is perfect for me; I was encouraged to take initiative towards new ideas and projects, and there was always a team behind me to help in any way possible. During my work term, I connected 7 EDN entrepreneurs with 15 SMU Enactus mentors who volunteer to help our members to carry their business further. The skills I learnt from working at EDN will benefit me in every way in the future. As an international student, I came out more confident and well spoken. I was also fortunate enough to be invited to many excellent networking opportunities such as DemoCamp, Business Over Breakfast and Festival of Trees. I would definitely recommend this position to other Co-op students because it was such an awesome experience for me. I think that any person who has the initiative and desire to take on new tasks and have freedom in their work would thoroughly enjoy this placement. I had a great time and I still cannot believe how quickly those 14 weeks passed!
Brianna Forbes-Crowe (Summer 2014)
My work term at EDN was my first co-op position as well as my first summer in Nova Scotia. It was a great position to have as the work was varied and heavily self-directed, keeping me interested and engaged. Brian and Archie were also both integral in how fruitful my work term was. Brian, the Executive Director at EDN, was extremely supportive and placed a lot of faith in me, letting me take the lead on certain projects and giving me time to work things out for myself instead of doing them for me. This allowed me to gain new skill sets and gave me confidence in my problem-solving abilities. Brian also exposed me to the business side of EDN, allowing me to attend Board and committee meetings as well as planning and attending their AGM. Archie, EDN’s Career Counselling Coordinator, was fun to work with and extremely inclusive with me when dealing with EDN members and different conferences he attended. He allowed me to interact with EDN’s members and collaborate with them on their ideas and businesses, giving the work term a hands-on dimension and a tangible feel for what the organization is all about. He also brought me to several different conferences and workshops, allowing me to learn different facets of the not-for-profit world while exposing me to diverse business environments.
As the Project Coordinator at EDN, you do not feel like an intern, but like part of the team. The hands on learning experiences, as well as the collaborative atmosphere created by Brian and Archie, made for a fun and interesting 14 weeks at EDN that I am grateful to have experienced. I am confident that I experienced opportunities at EDN in this work term that I would never have been exposed to in a different position and highly recommend the position to anyone looking for a fun and rewarding co-op position.
Daniel Code-McNeil (Summer 2013)
There is something interesting always to be had at EDN, whether you can help it or not you will always find new exciting things to do around each corner. Take a moment to imagine a Co-op position where you can grow your imagination, and transfer those clever ideas full of whit and bravado onto a network of entrepreneurs striving for success. With a support system so open and reliable, it would be hard for anyone not to feel at home in this bountiful work term environment.
Whatever you want out of this job, you will find it. There is no better way to learn about the plethora of challenges entrepreneurs encounter, then to talk with them hands on. My position at EDN has certainly helped improve my initiative and drive for innovation to a new level.
I do not think I will ever be able to replicate this work experience, you get to shine, and be shined on, so hopefully you like the sun.
Amelia Layne (Winter 2012)
My work term at EDN was not only my first co-op placement, but my first job in Canada, and it really set the bar high for other co-op placements to follow. I cannot imagine having a more productive, inspirational or enjoyable work term. Brian and Archie were great to work with and really made me feel like an important part of our team. Being trusted with tasks such as organizing the Entrepreneur of the Year Event, doing the payroll, working on the newsletter and blog posts and even having my own client, really motivated me to do my best. I got to take part in many exciting events such as StartUp Canada’s launch and Halifax Entrepreneur Expo. I was also fortunate enough to attend the Dine with a Dragon event with Robert Herjavec.
Brian and Archie really make the co-op experience very rewarding. They encouraged me to attend as many committee meetings as I wanted and allowed me to focus more on certain aspects of the job that interested me the most. Due to the flexibility of this position, you really get out what you put in. The skills I learnt from working at EDN I know will benefit me in every way in the future. I came out more confident and well spoken. I was also fortunate enough to meet many other interesting people as there were many excellent networking opportunities. Not only did I learn a lot from my valuable experience working at EDN but I thoroughly enjoyed working there. I still cannot believe how quickly those four months went by. Brian and Archie were great to work with and made it the kind of job where you actually do not mind getting up on Monday morning. It was very motivating and rewarding and I would recommend this job to anyone.
Elysia Percival (Winter 2011)
To say my experience with EDN was amazing would be an understatement. The skills, knowledge, and professional development that I have taken from this work term are invaluable. I have had opportunities that I would never have been given elsewhere, and was lucky enough to be involved with members on a one-on-one basis.
Having already completed a work term, I found my time with EDN to be engaging and fulfilling. From aiding in the creation of promotional products for the organization to being a part of the planning team for the Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, there was never a dull moment. One of my favorite aspects of the job was the responsibility that I was given from the very beginning. This independence allowed me to voice my opinion, state my ideas, and confidently approach each project I was assigned. At the same time, there was always a team behind me to help in any way possible. Brian and Archie both had a 100% open-door policy and made me feel welcome and comfortable from the very start.
I am a firm believer that you get exactly what you give in your work terms. The sky is the limit at EDN, and students have the opportunity to gain more than they could ever imagine while working with this organization. I think any major can benefit from working here, and would recommend the Project Coordinator position to every Co-op student looking for a job.
Dianne Poole (Fall 2010)
The project coordinator position at EDN is a great opportunity for any commerce student looking for a work term job. The amount of exposure to different areas of business that you get is incredible. There are always a variety of tasks to work on; you never get bored and it really helps you to recognize which areas of business you enjoy most, and those you excel in. I found that I was especially able to further develop my organizational and time management skills.
Access-a-Pro and the Holiday Social, the events which take place during the fall term, are both great opportunities to get to know the members of the organization, as well as the members of the community who get involved and show their support. The environment in this organization is perfect for co-op students; you are given lots of responsibility with what you are working on, but there is always help available when you need it. You are always invited to take part in meetings and discussions, and able to share your ideas. One of the things I enjoyed being a part of was the interview process for hiring the next co-op student; after being interviewed by employers a number of times, it was a valuable learning experience to be on the other side of the desk.
I feel lucky to have been given this very rewarding opportunity, and having the pleasure of working closely with Brian and Archie, who were always so supportive. I learned so much during my four months with EDN, and have met some exceptional entrepreneurs. It was great to be able to play a small part in their development and success!
Hannah Crawford (Summer 2010)
Beginning my first work-term I had no idea what to expect. EDN was the perfect first experience into the business and office environment. My range of responsibilities allowed me to gain understanding in all areas of the organization. This was the ideal way to learn which areas I really enjoy working in most. The position also allowed me to design the job and many tasks around these areas of interest and my major in Marketing. It was great to work in a place where each day was different. My duties as Project Coordinator included planning the AGM, creating newsletters, editing and maintaining the website and hiring the next co-op student. I not only learned from the planning of events but also from attending them. The background I gained in areas such as these will be incredibly valuable in future positions.
Both the staff and members at EDN were great people to work with. It was a very welcoming, fun, and positive environment to become part of. Through working in the Canada Business Centre and attending various meetings I was provided with the opportunity to network with many people in partnering and related organizations.
This is an awesome position especially for a first work term. It is great to have the flexibility to customize the work to what you would like to learn. It is a position for someone with a range of business interests, who takes initiative and is eager to learn and try new things. I had a great time and can’t believe how quickly the 4 months passed!
Becky Chapman (Fall 2009)
EDN has been such a rewarding and fantastic experience for me. My four month term went by so quickly yet I managed to accomplish so much during that time! The Project Coordinator position comes with a lot of responsibilities and opportunities, yet the staff at EDN and Canada Business – Nova Scotia are always available should you need help.
The co-op student really has the chance to tailor their work term to their interests. I got to do payroll and invoicing but I also coordinated several events from 5 guests to 100. I was responsible for our quarterly newsletter, however, I took the opportunity to collaborate with the other staff members at EDN and I am really happy with out final piece. I also had the chance to do some unique work as well, which really made my term! I got to meet one on one with several of our members and I learned so much from all of them and I always enjoyed their company. I also had the opportunity to attend several workshops and training sessions as a student and learn even more! The work I got to do during my term was so varied, yet all relevant! As an entrepreneurship major, it was so valuable for me to be exposed to so many areas of business.
Overall I would without a doubt recommend this position to all co-op students. You get the chance to meet inspiring people, do rewarding work.
Stephanie Pronk (Summer 2009)
My co-op placement as Project Coordinator at the Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Network (EDN) was better than I could have imagined! From the moment I was hired, EDN welcomed me like a member of their family. Brian and Archie, the permanent staff at EDN, have an excited energy about them that’s contagious! They create a welcoming and supportive work environment. The small size of the organization meant that I would witness, and take part in, most operations.
The best part about working at EDN, apart from the fantastic co-workers, was the freedom I had to tailor my work term to learn skills related to my major in Human Resource Management. Apart from my required duty to prepare the payroll, I was able to manage the entire recruitment process, write a Member Engagement Policy, and start adding sections to EDN’s Personnel Policy. I was also able to attend conferences on behalf of EDN that related to my education as well as the organization.
I would recommend this co-op position to any student who is looking for a challenging, fast-paced, independent role in a supportive work environment. Most importantly, a student in this role should be highly communicative, self-initiated, and have a sense of humor!
Working for EDN was a highly positive experience, and I was so sad to leave!
Jordann Kaye (Winter 2009)
For most co-op students, their first work term is intimidating. No matter how prepared you think you are, in the end, you have no idea what your first day will be like. In the winter of 2009, I was no exception. EDN taught me what to expect, in an open and welcoming environment. Eventually I had a wide range of responsibilities including payroll, accounting, cash flow forecasting, event planning, database management, updating the website, and I even got to help in the hiring process of the new student. This really helped me decide which areas of business I was most interested in, and as a result I was able to concentrate most of my energies on the areas I wanted. The freedom to decide what to work on will be perfect for anyone who takes initiative and pride in their work, and for those who have questions, answers are not far away.
I would recommend EDN for any student who is looking to have a great first work term. The environment is friendly and low pressure, and the staff are pleasant and more than willing to answer any and all questions. Being located at the Canada Business Service Center is also ideal as it opens the door to learning about all of the government programs designed to help businesses not only survive, but thrive. EDN also takes an interest in the personal development of their co-op students, they take the time to make sure that the work term is going well and that your needs are met. Overall a wonderful place to work and I will be sad to leave.
Chiraag Mutreja (Summer 2008)
My work term at EDN during the summer of 2008 was one I will never forget. Personally, I believe that this is the perfect job for a student’s first work term because the responsibilities involved cover several different academic fields. While having lots of freedom to focus on what I was interested in the most, I got to do the following: Payroll, Cash Flow Forecasting, Event Planning, Interviewing/Hiring, Quarterly Newsletter, Website/Database management, and lots more. This allowed me to get a feel for different lines of work which helped me decide the career path I would like to take in the future.
The workplace had a very friendly environment and was very professional at the same time. It was a great balance which helped me get my work done, stress free! My co-workers were also great people to have around to seek advice from and getting to know them over my work term was great. In conclusion, I highly recommend this job to students who are self-motivated, responsible, and are willing to try and learn new things!
Elizabeth Elliott (Summer 2007)
While working at EDN in the summer of 2007 I gained experience that will be valuable to me throughout my career and worked in an environment that could not have been more inviting or inspiring. This is a work term that is well suited to student development as there are a variety of tasks from many different areas of academic concentration. As the Project Coordinator for EDN, some of my routine tasks included payroll, a quarterly newsletter, website development, and research projects (amongst others). These activities were a great learning experience and provided me with the opportunity to expand my knowledge beyond my Human Resources major. This work term was very valuable to me as well because I was invited to participate in the complete hiring process for the subsequent Project Coordinator. Since this project was directly related to staffing, an area of special interest for me, I learned a great deal from this experience and appreciated the special consideration that Brian gave to this interest.
I would definitely recommend this position to another Co-op student because it was such a positive experience for me. I think that any person who has the initiative and desire to take on new tasks and have freedom in their work would thoroughly enjoy this placement. I think this would be an especially good work term for new Co-Op students because the work environment is very welcoming and not intimidating so it is a good way to be introduced into the work world. Overall, I had a very positive experience in this work term and any other student could achieve the same result if they are responsible and have initiative.