The University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Mathematics has the largest concentration of mathematical and computer science talent in the world. Perhaps the best testimony to Waterloo’s standing and exceptional reputation is the quality and many achievements of the faculty’s teachers, researchers, alumni and students. With more than 5,300 students, 200 full-time professors, and 180 courses in mathematics, statistics and computer science, the faculty is a powerhouse of discovery and innovation.
The University of Waterloo is home to the largest co-op education system in the world. It has 3,500 employers worldwide hiring their students for employment in jobs directly related to their field of study. Faculty of Mathematics students earn on average between CAD52,000 and CAD83,000 during the possible six co-op work terms.
Most programmes in the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Mathematics are offered in both the co-op and regular systems of study. Academically, co-op and regular are the same – that is, students from both systems take their courses together and follow the same academic programmes. The only difference is that co-op students take a break from their studies every four months to go on four-month work terms in jobs located primarily in Ontario, with a smaller selection found across Canada and abroad.
Admission to co-op is considered on a case-by-case basis using of official transcripts and information provided in the Admission Information Form. Students must meet the English proficiency requirement. Students who meet the academic requirements have a strong chance of being admitted.
There is a breadth of programmes offered under the Faculty of Mathematics, including Actuarial Science, Applied Mathematics, Combinatorics and Optimization, Computer Science, Math/Business Administration, Math/Financial Analysis and Risk Management, Pure Mathematics and Statistics. These programmes prepare students for a wide range of career possibilities.
THE REGULAR SYSTEM PROVIDES CONTINUITY
The regular system of education, a more traditional approach than the co-op system, is a desirable option for a signficant portion of their students. The regular system involves eight months of study from September through April. The academic year (two four- month school terms) is then followed by a four-month break during which students normally work.
CO-OP PROVIDES ON-THE-JOB EXPERIENCE
With opportunities to connect classroom theory with actual applications in a wide range of employment settings, co-op is attractive to a large percentage of mathematical and computer science students. During co-op work terms, students undertake a variety of job responsibilities, pick up new work- related skills, and earn competitive salaries, depending on the job level and experience. While co-op takes one year longer to complete than a more traditional program – for a total of 4 years 8 months – students gain up to two years of valuable work experience and make important career contacts.
INTERNATIONAL WORK STUDY PROGRAMME AT UW
Work/study jobs at the University of Waterloo typically pay around CAD9.50, CAD10, or CAD11 per hour. The maximum number of hours is 10 hours per week, with maximum earnings of CAD1,500 per 4-month term, including vacation pay and benefits. There are 1,100 part-time campus jobs available with a starting pay at CAD9.50 per hour. After studying at UW for 6 months, students are also eligible to work off campus for up to 20 hours (part-time) per week while in school, and up to 40 hours (full-time) when not in school (eg. during summer break).