For business student Alex Mitchell, co-op has given him the break in his budding career after his experience in the program saw him complete three co-op terms that helped him secure full-time employment after graduation.
During his time in the co-op program, Mitchell worked in accounting and auditor roles at Highline Produce, Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority, and Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), where he learned and perfected a variety of skills.
“I learned how to use accounting software such as QuickBooks and SAP, ways of maximizing efficiency in Excel, complex Excel formulas, assisting in providing financial statements, working and communicating with a team, and how to manage my time across a variety of projects and responsibilities,” says Mitchell.
He was able to leverage his experience and skills to secure an interview at Deloitte after meeting one of their representatives at the Odette CPA Night.
“My co-op experience allowed me to gain plenty of relevant experience I could speak to. My last placement at the CRA was particularly beneficial as it was very similar to the role I was applying to as an auditor,” he says. “After my interview, I received a phone call and was offered a job and a gladly accepted.”
Mitchell’s advice for future co-op students is to maximize their experience in the program as much as possible.
“Working for different companies each term helps to maximize the variety of knowledge you gain and the teams that you work with,” he says. “This can help you decide what type of work you excel in and enjoy the most, the type of industry you want to work in, and the types of people you work best with.”
Mitchell recently completed his final semester at the University of Windsor and will graduate with a Bachelor of Commerce – Co-op with an Accounting Specialization. He starts his new job at Deloitte as a staff accountant in audit and assurance in the fall.
“I will be bringing an eagerness to learn and a strong desire to succeed in my new position where I hope to have a long and rewarding career.”