Latest News

Richmond Stories: Nitika

By Matthew Cheung

Published 11:52 PDT, Fri June 7, 2024

In this edition of Richmond Stories, Richmond Sentinel host Jim Gordon (JG) sat down with fourth-year co-op student Nitika (N) to discuss her experience as a Co-op student and her recent recognition as Langara college’s 2023 Co-op Student of the Year. 

JG: Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning or CEWIL, partner with post-secondary institutions, community members, employers, government, and students to champion work integrated education and learning in a workplace. Today’s interview is with a young woman, who’s a resident of Richmond, a fourth-year student and the recipient of Langara College’s 2023 Co-op Student of the Year Award. She will soon graduate with a Co-op designation as part of her Bachelor of Business Administration in business management and has already landed a full-time position when she graduates. The young woman I was talking about is Nitika. 

You were featured in a recent edition of the Richmond Sentinel, let’s talk about your young career so far. You’re attending, and about to graduate Langara College, and, you’ll be graduating with a university acknowledged degree, how does that work?  

Nitika (N): Langara is a college, it has various programs, but it also offers bachelor programs and degrees. I myself am doing a BBA, so I’m graduating with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, so it does offer the full four-year programs. 

JG: For our viewers out there and high school students would you recommend Langara as a college to go to? 

N: Absolutely, for me since I was working part time while doing my courses, it allowed me to attend programs in the morning or afternoons. So, you can work accordingly, with a flexible schedule.

JG: Let’s talk about your schedule when you were in school, and managing your time in all the years that you were there? How much did you study academics of business administration and how much was involved in the co-op program and onsite training experience? How was that all incorporated together to make it suitable for your lifestyle and schedule? 

N: With the co-op program, you can take it any time throughout the four-year program, you have to do one pre-requisite course which is basically teaching you how to build your portfolio, resume, how to conduct interviews. Afterwards, you have three years to take your co-op program anytime, it’s a semester-based program so you can do it solo as its own thing or even work with a couple courses your taking along with that. 

JG: Do you get to choose which company you want to do the co-op program with or does the school place you in accordance with what you’re studying?

N: The school allows you to take the opportunity to apply to a company of your choosing and to manage the whole process of applying to interviews, knowing about a company you’re interested in, taking the interview, and being employed by them. 

JG: Your first co-op experience was as an event assistant, at a non-profit, talk a bit about that. 

N: My first co-op program, was last year in 2023, in early spring with Latincouver, a non-profit organization. There I got to work with mentors who have been in the industry for many years, the organization has been doing programs for the past 15 plus years. I got to curate different programs and do them from scratch, from ordering tents, the very basics, to  talking, to the city, to understanding rules, regulations and the policies you need to follow to organize different events. 

JG: It’s interesting, I cover a lot of events but often people don’t realize the minutia in putting this event on and making sure it’s safe and properly regulated. Was it everything you’d had hoped it to be? 

N: Absolutely, I never thought I would be doing events because that’s not my background. Through co-op, I got to try a new industry, a new type of work lifestyle, that was something unexpected but the best experience of my life. 

JG: Are co-op students reimbursed for the hours that they work? 

N: We have paid internships, different companies offer different wages, mine was paid. 

JG: Are there a lot of companies involved, offering positions in different areas?

N: Absolutely, there are a lot of companies looking to hire new students which requires being patient with them, teach them something new, and in the future possibly offer opportunities to work. 

JG: Was there enough time for you in this experience, in terms of the length of the co-op itself?

N: My first program, the first co-op I did was with Latincouver, initially the contract was just four months. I don’t think that was enough, but I was lucky enough to be extended for another four months, so it became a two-term co-op program for me. From that, in the eight months I got to learn quite a bit. 

JG: Are there other things, recommendations you’d give to the school or parents out there on how it could improve this co-op?

N: No, personally it was four months and then it got extended to eight months. There are opportunities like that where people can extend their co-op terms. People who feel they’ve accomplished what they wanted; they can stop. There are people who want to learn more, they feel they can expand more, so sometimes they can extend it. 

JG: Let’s talk about what’s next for you, you’ve done this, is this an area you’d like to return to, or was it one you said ‘I’m glad I experienced it because it’ll add to my resume, I want to try something new’. 

N: It goes both ways, it’s definitely something I loved and enjoyed and would love to go back to but, it’s also something that builds on my resume and now I get to explore different things that I can use as a transferrable skill. 

JG:You graduate soon, are you going to take some time off this summer or will you jump right into the business world?

N: I’m currently with my last co-op, it was a full-time job. I will be extending it and will be continuing it and will see where it goes from there. 

For the full video interview, visit

See more canada news

See All

See more international news

  See All
© 2024 Richmond Sentinel News Inc. All rights reserved. Designed by Intelli Management Group Inc.