Concordia University

Economics Co-op and PREX

Why join the Economics Co-op program?

To gain a competitive edge! 

After graduation, another challenge begins:  Finding a job when thousands of other graduates are trying to do the same thing.  This can be a daunting task but co-op graduates have it easier.  They tend to find jobs faster than other students and at higher salaries.   Why?  With the help of the Concordia Institute for Co-operative Education, they have already sharpened their job search skills, their résumé writing skills, their cover letter writing skills, and their interview skills while studying;  And they have one year of relevant work experience to put on their résumé!  Compared to other students, Co-op students are able to stand out. 

But this is not the only advantage of becoming a Co-op student.  Work terms allow Co-op students to earn money while studying, to build a professional network, and to gain work-related skills that cannot be acquired in the classroom.  In addition, they enable students to orient their career in the right direction by letting them sample different types of jobs or employers before they graduate.

Joining the Co-op program is a career building opportunity.

Ok, I’m convinced:  Co-op is for me!  But why Economics?  Shouldn’t I go to a Business School instead?

We could try to convince you that an Economics degree is a better option by saying: That it will train you to analyze problems and find an original solution instead of following recipes;  That you will gain various technical skills (data collection, econometric and statistical analysis, etc...) very valuable in the workplace;  That these skills will also make it easier to go on to graduate studies if you ever decide to do so in the future...

But a picture is often worth a thousand words:

By studying Economics, you will learn that wages should grow when labour demand grows relatively faster than labour supply:  The recent surge in the number of Business School graduates in Québec may explain why Economics graduates are now getting a better pay.  In the job market nowadays, you are not quite unique if you have a Business degree.  Economists, on the other hand, are in short supply.

What about work terms?    

Co-op students must complete three (3) four-months long paid work terms.  Paid work experience means that employers will expect a high level of productivity and professionalism from any student.

Note, however, that the Co-op program is not a placement agency.  Work term placements are obtained on a competitive basis.  Students can apply for jobs posted with the Institute for Co-operative Education but are also encouraged to arrange their own.

In the past, Economics Co-op students have worked for employers such as Agriculture and Agri-Food, Bank of Canada, Bank Laurentian, Bank of Montreal, Black and Decker, Bombardier, Canadian Pacific Railways, Canadian Space Agency, Environment Canada, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, Hydro Quebec, Industry Canada, Pfizer Pharmaceutical, Pratt and Whitney, Revenue Canada, Royal Bank of Canada, Scotia McLeod, Statistics Canada, TD Bank, Transport Canada, Pratt & Whitney, and Mercer.

Whoa!  Three work terms:  That’s too many for me!

No problem!  There is also the Economics PRofessional EXperience program (PREX).  PREX allows students to complete only one work term.  It is suitable for students who are already well advanced into their studies and cannot complete three work terms in the time left.  With PREX, you can enjoy the same benefits as the Co-op program while having a bit more flexibilty.

Students are admitted into PREX in early fall and normally complete their work term during the following summer term.  Fees are also different than those for Co-op.

What do Economics students do during their work terms?

Economics Co-op students have participated in market research, analyzed Canadian export trends, build forecast models and more. Read our students' testimonials of their work terms and see what they have to say

Are there any details I need to know about the Economics Co-op program?

Co-op students must either be enrolled in Specialization or Honours in Economics. Both Specialization and Honours are more intensive than a Major in Economics, requiring 20 Economics courses (60 credits), instead of 14 courses (42 credits) for a Major.

  • Honours: Normal route to graduate work in Economics. Core courses are Econ 325, 326, 401, 403, 421, and 422.
  • Specialization: Less demanding. Of the core courses Specialization students must only take Econ 325 and Econ 421 (or Econ 423).

In addition, Co-op students must participate in four webinars designed to enhance their job search skills, their cover letter and résumé writing skills, and their interview skills.  A work term preparation course must also be attended prior to the first work term.

It is also important to note that the Co-op program is an intensive program designed to be completed within three (3) years, similarly to the regular Economics program.  Students are thus required to be enrolled full-time in any semester other than their work term semesters.  Normally, for new students, the first work term takes place during the fourth semester of enrolment, then is followed by a study term, a second work term, a study term, a third work term, and finally a study term.  It is possible to have two work terms consecutively but any study/work term sequence must end with a study term.

To learn more about the Co-op experience, visit the Institute for Co-operative Education

To understand more about the program's requirements visit the Undergraduate Calendar:

Are there any fees that Co-op students have to pay?

Yes.  Please consult Co-op fees section on the Institute for Co-operative Education’s webpage.  These fees cover the program’s administration cost and the career development services received from Co-op.     

What do I need to get into Co-op? 

We are looking for motivated and dedicated students with solid academic records:   Students who demonstrate good technical abilities (math, statistics) and a keen interest for economics will be preferred.  The ability to communicate in both French and English is also an advantage.

Applicants selected as potential candidates for admission into the Economics Co-op program will be invited for an interview.  They will be asked to provide a résumé at that time. Interviews normally take place in early September, late November or early December, and early May. 

Who should I contact for more information?

Professor Christian Sigouin (Economics Co-op Director)
Hall Building H-1155.41

Julia Decker (Undergraduate and Co-op Assistant)
Hall Building H-1155.55 (514 848-2424 ext.: 3903)

How do I apply to the Economics Co-op?

New students can apply to the Economics Co-op program at the time of applying to Concordia by checking the Co-op box.  They are also encouraged to send the application form below.

Current Concordia students can apply by clicking on the following button.




A Distinguished Co-op Alumna

Nichola Dyer, an Economics Co-op alumna from 1985, works as a program manager at the World Bank, where she has worked for the past 25 years. To view her biography, click here.

Ms. Dyer visited our Department in February 2018 and met with Cristina Nogai, a recipient of the Nichola Dyer Co-op Award. To view their meeting, click here.

Ms. Dyer also offered invaluable advice to our students on various aspects of career development and work-life balance. To view her talk, click on the video below.


Offered to students who are enrolled in the MA in Economics.

Work Terms: Students take 2 Work Terms in addition to their regular Academic Terms. Co-op students are expected to have at least one Academic Term before the 1st Work Term, and one Academic Term after the 2nd Work term.

Past Employers: Agriculture and Agri-Food, Bank of Canada, Bank Laurentian, Bank of Montreal, Black and Decker, Bombardier, Canadian Pacific Railways, Canadian Space Agency, Environment Canada, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, Hydro Quebec, Industry Canada, Pfizer Pharmaceutical, Pratt and Whitney, Revenue Canada, Royal Bank of Canada, Scotia McLeod, Statistics Canada, TD Bank, Transport Canada, Pratt & Whitney, William Mercier.

Academic Content: Identical to the regular MA program.

Next steps:

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