Co-op Experience

UWaterloo students who have worked with Fairfax have the advantage of going back to class with real work experience. There are many positions available for those looking for challenging, exciting work. Our students get right into the action, many working with senior executives on important projects.

Brad works with Vice President and Chief Risk Officer Peter Clarke in risk management and says the unique culture at Fairfax is very apparent. “All the executives have been here for a really long time so it’s obviously somewhere they enjoy working,” he said. “And the best part about Fairfax is you really see their culture, their guiding principles are really followed.”

Brad’s major at Waterloo is in financial analysis and risk management, so a position with Fairfax was a perfect fit. “I work on capital modeling, getting information from the subsidiaries about capital adequacy and modeling for different scenarios that could happen in the insurance industry, so it’s pretty cool to get exposure to that,” he added.

The international aspect of the program appeals to students looking for a cross-cultural experience. Ana completed her third-year co-op term at Zenith Insurance in Woodland Hills, California and fourth-year term at Advent Group in London, England. The environment and business student says it’s a good idea to get exposure to different industries and geographic areas to help one decide on a career.

During his third year in economics and speech communication at Waterloo, Evan worked with the customer innovation team at Northbridge. The six-person team is responsible for internal research and development and Evan says his experience has been great since he’s been able to help out with multiple projects.

“When you have six people and you have all these projects thrown at you, you’re going to get a lot of work,” he said. “It feels good to be able to contribute. Here at Northbridge they really made me feel like I was another member of the company, not just a co-op student.”

In his position at Northbridge, Evan says he put what he learned at school to use in the real world. When the customer innovation team presents analytical information or statistics to executives, they provide the “so-what factor,” Evan says, to explain what the information means for the company.

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