International Co-op Work Term

The Experiential Learning Hub adheres to the University of Guelph Safe International Travel Policy for Students.  Please connect with your Co-op Coordinator if you're interested in learning more about international co-op work terms.

A global co-op work term does more than add an international work experience to your resume. You will gain an increased understanding of other parts of the world, its people and perhaps, most importantly, yourself.


Working abroad is not for everyone, but the unique challenges you face may very well be your best reward. You will find a list of sites below that will be helpful in an international co-op job search.


Locations that University of Guelph Co-op Students have completed work terms during the 2017/2018 academic year


"My international co-op placement broadened my horizons beyond the typical left me feeling more accomplished and proud of myself than any other work placement I have had. Working abroad helped me develop admirable problem solving skills, resiliency, independence and confidence, both within my workplace, as well as outside in the larger world. In addition to these benefits, I was able to meet so many incredible people from around the world, make connections, as well as further travel plans throughout Europe for the remainder of the summer where I plan to backpack. An international co-op experience is something I would recommend to everyone and anyone looking for a challenging and valuable experience" - Jacqueline Haalboom, English Teacher Intern, Spain. 


"Cleveland has become a part of me and will always be my second home. My experience in Cleveland helped me grow as a person and has strengthened my knowledge in the hospitality industry" - Kate Sheppard, Management Intern, Cleveland, OH, USA. 


Click here to read more testimonials from students who have completed International Co-op Work Terms 

Provincial Summer Research Programs 

The ORA, OBW, and OJS provincial programs all offer summer research programs during which students engage in research supervised by a professor at one of the participating host universities in that country.  Students may be able to receive University of Guelph credit for these programs if they find a University of Guelph professor to supervise and mark them for an independent research course (speak to a Program Counsellor for more information).  Students may also be able to use the research program as a Co-op work term.  The ideal work term length is 16 weeks; work terms of at least 12 weeks will be considered.  Inform your Co-op Coordinator if you are interested in pursuing a Provincial Summer Research Program. 


Ontario/Rhone-Alpes (ORA) - France

The ORA Program offers research opportunities for students in science, engineering and health sciences through the ORA Summer Research Program. Detailed information is available on the ORA Summer Research Program website. *Funding pending for 2022-23


Ontario/Baden-Wurttemberg (OBW) - Germany

The OBW Program offers research opportunities for students in science, engineering and health sciences through the OBW Summer Research Program. Detailed information is available on the OBW Summer Research Program website. *Funding pending for 2022-23


Ontario/Jiangsu (OJS) - China

Through the OJS Summer Research Program, Ontario students from any faculty can spend the summer semester undertaking research in their field of study, guided by a faculty member at one of the nine participating Jiangsu universities. Each participant will be awarded a scholarship of $3000 to support student travel and living costs in China.  More information is available on the OJS website. *Funding pending for 2022-23


DADD Rise Germany

RISE Germany offers three month summer research internships in Germany for full-time undergraduate students enrolled at a university/college in the United States, Canada, the UK or Ireland in the fields of biology, chemistry, computer science, physics, earth sciences or engineering (or a closely related field).  Please review the DAAD RISE Germany website for more information. 


This is an option for full-time students in science, engineering, business, and applied arts subjects to gain relevant work experience abroad while living in and learning about another culture. Through the internship program, you are paid enough to cover your living expenses in the country of work and you’ll expand your horizons by working and living in a foreign country. IAESTE also charges a placement fee if you receive a placement.  Click here for more information on IAESTE Canada.

Additional International Work Search Resources

For more information, visit the International Work section of the Student Experience Department website.  You will find additional helpful resources to assist in your international work term exploration. 

Self-Directed Network Job Search

You can also conduct a self-directed international job search tapping into your network with the support of your Co-op Coordinator.  You can focus your search on a specific country, industry, and type of position and introduce UofG Co-op and what you have to offer through your qualifications, skills and experience.  If the company meets the necessary requirements (paid position in your field with full-time hours), your Co-op Coordinator can help you turn the opportunity into a co-op position.  You will need to complete a Co-operative Education Network Job Confirmation Form for your Co-op Coordinator to review and approve. 

Travel Grants

University of Guelph students have the opportunity to experience different cultures and communities to enhance learning experiences. Travel Grants are used to offset additional costs like airfare, vaccinations and travel insurance that are associated with travelling.  Review the travel grants link to see if you are eligible.

Safe Travel Information

Travelling safely helps academic travelers focus on their studies, research and community work without letting things like illness, crime, traffic accidents etc. spoil the real purpose of the trip.  Click here for the travel safe information link provided by the Centre for International Programs at U of G.

All University of Guelph students travelling abroad (including the U.S.) as part of their academic program (study abroad program, class field trip, conference, co-op work term, etc.) must complete DepartSmart, the online pre-departure orientation on CourseLink.

After you have confirmed your international work term you will be required to complete the DepartSmart program.  DepartSmart is offered through the Centre for International Programs and will provide you with information on travelling safely: insurance, immigration, and other topics relevant to academic travel.

Insurance Coverage

Co-op students travelling outside of Canada for an international co-op work term are required to purchase Guard Me travel health insurance.  Guard Me insurance provides comprehensive health insurance and also includes third party liability and security evacuation. Go to the Guelph-Guard Me web portal for more information.  Students will learn about Guard Me through DepartSmart and purchase the insurance through the CIP Guard Me portal.

There are no exemptions from purchasing Guard Me insurance. For example, even if the host employer or country requires a student to buy a mandatory health insurance plan, they must still purchase Guard Me insurance. While other plans may cover the student for basic medical care in their host country, they often do not cover students for such things as travel to other countries, emergency evacuation, repatriation, or flying a loved one to be with the student if they are hospitalized.

Interested in working abroad? Click here to sign up for our email list, to receive information, updates and tips about International Co-op Work Terms.