Co-op Student of the Week

Co-op Semester 2 Thank You

Co-op students have a unique opportunity to gain valuable work experience, network with members of our local community, and contribute to the success of an organization, all while earning high school credits! To recognize the guidance provided by their supervisors, the GWSS Co-op students and teachers organized an Employer Appreciation Breakfast this past week on Tuesday. The event was a reflection of the students' understanding and appreciation of the valuable mentorship and learning experiences provided by their supervisors throughout their work term.The breakfast highlighted the co-op students' commitment to fostering positive relationships with their employers and showcased their professionalism and organizational skills.

Students not only had an opportunity to express their gratitude but also engaged in meaningful conversations, shared their experiences, and personally thanked their supervisors for their guidance and support. The supervisors also took to the podium and spoke highly of the benefits of the GWSS Co-op Program, acknowledging how the program brings motivated and talented individuals into the workplace to get a sample of a real-world work experience. The event was a testament to the strong bond between the co-op students and their supervisors, fostering a positive and collaborative work environment. Overall, the Employer Appreciation Breakfast was a success. Thank you to Ms. Anjos and Mr. Jenkins for all of their work with the Co-op students this semester.

The Co-op Program would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our supervisors from this past semester:

Arab Community Centre of Toronto

Atrybe Inc

Captain R Wilson Elementary School

Chartwell Retirement Home

City Electric Supply

Cornerstone Fine Homes

Crunch Fitness - Burloak

Doggie Detailing

Dolled Up Cupcakes

Dundas Family Dental

Eagle Tech Recycling

Expedia Cruises

Furry Friends Doggie Day Care

Great Clips

Halton Dental Lab

HDSB Library Services

JML Electric Inc.

John Willmott Architect, Inc.

Live to Dance Studio

Mario Positano - Animation Professor, Sheridan College

McMaster University - Nuclear Operations

Nottinghill Family Wellness CentreOakville Rehab Centre

Oakpark Pet Hospital

Oakville Toyota

Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital

One Plumb Plumbing

Palermo Pharmacy

Palermo Physio

Palermo Public School

Palermo Village Dental

Precision eBusiness Group

Pretium Engineering

Resilient Kids Canada

Revera West Oak Village Long Term Care Home

Robertson Electric Wholesale

Sheddon Physiotherapy and Sports Clinic

Shoppers Drug Mart 

The Dog House Spa

Toddie

Wellspace MD Family Practice & Wellness

West Oakville Preschool Centre

Wise Health Law

Week of June 26, 2023

Student:   Gurmilan Mand, Grade 11      

Placement:  Palermo Village Dental


My co-op placement is at Palermo Village Dental. My main tasks include assisting dental assistants and the dentist, monitoring various restorative, implants being done, and surgeries, and setting up patient rooms. 


Some of the most important skills I have learned in this placement are communication, team work, working under pressure, as well as problem solving. 


Co-op is an excellent way to get real-world work experience in fields that fit with your interests and strengths. Additionally learning new strengths and abilities. Learning actively and succeeding as a responsible team player in the "real world" in a field of your choice. I've been able to see what I want to pursue in my post-secondary and future goals thanks to  my co-op at this placement. 



Previous Co-op Students of the Week

Week of April 24, 2023

Student: Lauren Tokey

Placement: Wise Health Law


My main responsibilities so far have been joining in actual meetings with clients and reading official court documents to follow along on current cases. I have attended a variety of meetings with my supervisors and a couple of lawyers who work at this firm to discuss the cases and help with my learning of the vocabulary and processes involved. I went into the office this week for the first time and helped with filing and organizing printed records. I also am starting a research project for one of the lawyer’s cases to look at similar cases and what the defendant’s penalties were. I have really enjoyed learning about all these interesting cases and working alongside these seasoned professionals.


Some of the most important skills I have learned are the overall processes of the law firm. Each lawyer has ongoing cases that I can jump between and learn about. They involve preparing clients, making documents, and appearing in front of a judge. I can see both the plaintiff and respondents perspectives and see how they handle situations, and how we as lawyers can help provide justice for the clients. The law course I am currently taking gives me the basic knowledge, and it has been really cool seeing law be in play in real-time perspectives. All of these things have been super interesting and are growing my passion for law. 


Experiencing being in the actual office and seeing the lifestyle of these lawyers has definitely been helping to steer me into really wanting to pursue a law career. I took this co-op to find out if it is something I would like to do, and the experiences I have been having have helped confirm that. Talking to the lawyers about how they became lawyers and how they enjoy the job has informed me about post-secondary options and inspired me to work hard to get to be where they are.

Week of March 27, 2023

Student: Sebastian Lak, Grade 12

Placement: McMaster Nuclear Operations and Facilities 


My main tasks and responsibilities consist of a lot of things. My day in and day out varies drastically, some tasks I have been given are to work on some germanium detectors, fix 3D printers, pressure test different rigs and percussive maintenance.


I have learned a lot about safety because I am working with and around a nuclear reactor and different particle accelerators, and with those machines comes radiation, so I have to be wary and respect radiation and the protocols that are in place. 


In the very near future, I will attend Mohawk College for Computer Engineering Technology Mechatronics, a program that includes a co-op placement as well. I am hoping to go back to McMaster and work again there at the Nuclear Operations Facilities.  


Another thing that this co-op has provided me is a lot of connections to a lot of people - whether it's people that work there or our partners that we work with - I have gathered as much contact info as I could to help with my future.

Thank You to Our Semester 1 Partners

A great big thank you to all of our partners listed below:


Amica Bronte Harbour

Burloak Animal Hospital

Canadian Tire

Captain R Wilson Elementary School

Chartwell Waterford Retirement Home

Desserts App

Dundas Family Dental

Ecole Forest Trail

FreshCo

Mapletek Computers

Mario Positano from Sheridan College 

Mark's Auto Service

Marler Law

Mynt Hair Studio

Nature's NEAR

OAKMED Family Health Team

Oakville Animal Clinic

Oakville Hospital

Oakville Rehab

Oakville Toyota

Palermo Pharmacy

Palermo Village Dental

Procor

Shoppers Drug Mart

Signarama

Sobeys

St Mary's Elementary School

WellSpace MD

West Oak Elementary School

YourTV

Co-op Successes and Semester 1 Thank You


We had some amazing Co-op experiences this semester! Students explored placements in areas such as health care, auto service, law, baking, dentistry, vets, and human resources, just to name a few. Our semester one community partners were very supportive in providing enriched learning opportunities. 


Our students were fantastic representatives of Garth Webb SS as evidenced by the placement supervisor comments they received. Some examples are below.







Way to go Chargers!

Semester 1 Co-op Students of the Week

Week of February 20, 2023

Student:  Abdullah Al Mneni, Grade 11

Placement:  Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital


Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital (OTMH) has provided me the opportunity to work in two departments: the Physiotherapy Department and the Recreation Therapy Department. My main responsibilities in the Physiotherapy Department are guiding patients to the gym area or patient care area and helping prepare ice and hot packs for physiotherapists to use on patients. I also help prepare exercise set-ups for patients to use and clean used beds for new patients to lay on. In Recreation Therapy, my main responsibilities include preparing coffee or tea for patients (I need to check their diet first to determine which ingredients are restricted for them to consume) and wheelchair patients to the activity room or their bedroom. I also help decorate the hospital (especially for Christmas) and help in making activity booklets for patients to explore new topics they haven’t heard or seen about.


The most important skills that I have learned in working in the Recreation Therapy department are how to maintain my stress and communicate when being under high-pressure situations since there are times when patients have a seizure or a cardiac arrest. I have also learned that I would need to continuously introduce myself again to patients I have met before because many patients in the Recreation Therapy department are old and have dementia. Moreover, more important skills I have also learned in the physiotherapy department are how to complete my tasks on time, such as preparing three ice or hot packs for physiotherapists to use and cleaning beds before new patients enter, especially during busy days.


My experience in working in both departments at Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital has helped guide me to many future pathways careers, such as being a physiotherapist, kinesiologist, physiotherapy assistant, massage therapist, or recreation therapist. Since I’m also planning to major in medicine at McMaster University, I have enhanced my communication with patients and learned about medical equipment (Ultrasound, IFC pads, and TENS machines). Therefore, working at OTMH has also helped me believe I should study medicine.

Week of February 13, 2023

Student:  Filippo Mancini, Grade 11

Placement:  Shoppers Drug Mart (Neyagawa & Dundas)


As one of the pharmacist assistants at the Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacy, I am responsible for helping patients in their prescription pick-up, filling the prescriptions, counseling patients with their needs when the situation does not call for a pharmacist, contacting patients, ordering refills on prescriptions, and occasionally drop-off. For the most part, and along with another pharmacist assistant, I am in charge of printing labels, ‘shopping’ (getting) the medications, and filling.


The most important skills I have learned during my time in the pharmacy would be my ability to work as a team and my ability to continue to perform well even under high-paced and high-stress scenarios. They are extremely important to me because with these skills, I am easily able to apply them into real-world situations and in future jobs.


Co-op has broadened my future pathway decisions, and has certainly helped me make plans for post-secondary education because during my time in my placement, I have been able to see the highs and lows, the challenges and benefits of being a pharmacist assistant working at the pharmacy. This is because co-op is really like test driving a career, and allows you to decide whether or not you want to pursue a career in a certain field. In my personal experience, I have enjoyed my time during this semester in my placement to the point that I now see that this is definitely a field I would be willing to work in.

Week of January 30, 2023

Student:  Ayaan Ahmed, Grade 11

Placement:  Shoppers Drug Mart


My placement is at Shoppers Drug Mart on Third Line and Dundas.  The main tasks and responsibilities for a Pharmacist Assistant include filling medications, counselling patients, and restocking medications.  The most important skills I have learned this semester are organizational skills, public speaking while talking to customers, and focus skills when the store is busy


My co-op placement has allowed me to realize that my desired pathway is still in science, but not in pharmacy as I don't believe this line of work best fits my interests. Co-op gave me the opportunity to try this pathway and I learned that due to the lack of interface with patients, as pharmacists only deal with prescriptions, that I would like to try something else as my future career.

Week of January 23, 2023

Student: Zainab Rahman, Grade 11 

Placement: Palermo Village Dental


As a co-op student at Palermo Village Dental my main tasks/responsibilities include shadowing the doctor, shadowing the dental assistants, assisting with sterilization of dental equipment/tools, observing different restorative, surgical and orthodontic procedures, observing new patient consults, and preparing rooms for patients. I have also had the opportunity to observe various advanced dental technologies at the clinic. In addition to that, I also get to observe how a clinic operates and what goes into managing one.


Some of the most important skills that I have built on are collaboration, communication, and responsibility skills. When working at a dental clinic, you have to work with the rest of the team and you have to communicate effectively and appropriately with fellow co-workers and patients which allows you to build on those skills every day. When dealing with delicate equipment and completing day-to-day tasks, you have to demonstrate responsibility to ensure that things run smoothly.


Co-op is a great way to introduce students to a field they may be interested in. You get to obtain first-hand experience with professionals who have been working in the field for years while also discovering and exploring your own skills and interests. My co-op placement has helped me determine my post-secondary education plans while making friends with an amazing team and has allowed me to solidify my plans of pursuing a career in healthcare.

Week of January 16, 2023

Student: Mariam Mourad, Grade 11 

Placement: St. Mary's Elementary School


St. Mary Elementary has given me the opportunity to further explore my aspirations of being a teacher, as well as learn more about what different types of teachers do. My main responsibilities include supervising recesses, and lunch, and providing students help when they need it. I’ve created different bonds with students in the 4/5 split class that I work in, and have seen students improve from the beginning of this semester. In the class, I usually work and support a student to help them overcome learning challenges in literacy and numeracy by implementing accommodations with different interactive activities.

 

The most important skills that I have learned are age appropriate communication skills as I have to interact with kids in grades 4 and 5, aged around 9 and 10 years old. Each student is at a different level with their numeracy and literacy skills, which is why it’s important to be patient and support each student with their own individual needs. My leadership skills are also another skill that I have polished. Working with students to help them finish a task or prepare for a project, needs a lot of patience, guidance, and leadership to ensure each student is working effectively individually or in groups to the best of their abilities. I also make sure that students don’t go off task, by giving them tips on how to improve their work or support them through areas they may be struggling in. My creativity and illustration skills are also other skills I have enhanced as I’ve helped prepare charts, posters, and checklists for different purposes. Doing this made me realize how important visualization is when presenting or explaining a new idea for students.


Co-op has definitely helped me make decisions for my future and plan out whether or not a career in the education system is a good fit for me. I have always enjoyed working with kids, and it is sad to note that my time at St. Mary is almost over. The connections I’ve made with my co-workers as well as the students, will always be memorable to me and I have definitely learned many valuable skills that I will be able to use in any of my future endeavours. At the moment, I am not interested in pursuing a career as a teacher, however, I have learned that if I complete the Early Childhood Education program after University, I am able to work with young children, or become an Educational Assistant, which is something I may end up considering. I have spent some of my time with an EA, and the work I have done with them to improve a students’ skills has definitely been rewarding for me to see. My placement has allowed me to explore a different pathway, and is a wonderful experience for anyone interested in the education field.

Week of December 19, 2023

Student: Julio Ortiz, Grade 12

Placement: Oakville Toyota


Working at Toyota, my job includes performing oil and tire changes for customers, as well as any other tasks needing to be completed to maintain the vehicle. I am responsible for investigating the car to find the root of the problem and ensure that after my job is completed, each system runs smoothly and correctly. Everyday I do manual labour lifting tires, gallons of oil, and other tools needed to assist myself and my team. 


The most important skill I’ve learned is hardwork and dedication. Often in some cases, you may not find the root of the problem right away, it requires thorough investigation to see the issue which can take time and be frustrating. It also takes hard work to complete the job, making sure each step is successfully performed to not put the driver at risk for malfunction. 


Co-op is an amazing way for students to learn new skills, and more about themselves. I’d recommend taking co-op to anyone who has an interest in any field, but don't know if they want to pursue that career path yet. Co-op helped me explore the wide variety of future occupations, while making friends with a great team and having fun.

Week of November 28, 2022

Student: Arish Shahab, Grade 11

Placement: Shoppers Drug Mart


As a member of the pharmacy team at Shoppers Drug Mart, my main tasks include giving

patients their medication at pick-up, filling prescriptions, contacting clinics/pharmacies,

counselling patients, and ordering refills on prescriptions. I am assigned to work at the fill

station and pick-up station where I interact with patients and support them with their needs.


The most important skill I’ve learned is to maintain myself and stay focused while stuck under pressure. At the pharmacy, it gets very busy with many different kinds of patients every day, but having the skill of staying focused under pressure helps to efficiently manage the pharmacy.


Co-op is an excellent way to get hands-on experience for a profession that inspires you and a profession you possibly want to proceed with in the future. It is a great learning experience to build your knowledge and expertise in the workplace. Working in a pharmacy for one semester you have the opportunity to perform pharmacist tasks. Co-op is an opportunity for anyone who has questions or wants to proceed in their desired profession. Taking co-op gives students a headstart over others who are willing to pursue the same career as you.

Week of November 21, 2022

Student:  Ayesha Ahmad, Grade 11

Placement:  Marler Law Firm


My main tasks and responsibilities include completing informative forms for cases, organizing files and researching information for cases.  One of the most important skills that I have acquired is researching Information.  You can explore your hobbies through research, learn something new, improve your problem-solving abilities, and present yourself with fresh challenges. You will get the chance to collaborate closely with a mentor—a faculty member or other experienced researcher—while working on a research project that was begun by the faculty.


During my time at Marler Law, I have learnt how lawyers go about dealing with a case and how much work goes into a case before taking it to court. I learned how hard it is to work towards pleasing your client and finding a solution which helps them. This has helped me decide if I would like to dedicate my education towards law, I was able to decide if I wanted to deal with a lot of different people and use problem solving in an everyday work environment.

Week of November 14, 2022

Student:   Majed Mawas, Grade 11

Placement:  DessertsApp


I am assigned programming tasks that last between 2-3 weeks. Recently I completed a Registration page for DessertApp’s official website. It has many designs implemented in the code; as you can see in the screenshot I have also implemented a code that lets you know you can't register without having a valid email. Additionally, there are some other features I could not add to the screenshot but they essentially tell you if your boxes are not filled, if you have successfully registered and if there was an error! 


I think the most important skills I have learned were how to work with GatsbyJS and React, this was my first experience using both APIs in a real-time working environment! Another thing to mention is the overall completion of this website, as it is my first time using web design so I am really surprised to see what I ended up with so far.


What I have done in my co-op so far will be extremely important for my future in software engineering. This entire field revolves around experience and how fast you can get a job done by learning on the spot. And as a first-time experience, I think I did a really good job making this possible. The website in the screenshot, in reality, took only a bit under 1 week. So I wonder what I could do with the full 2-week time period that I could have used up if I didn't end up with an issue that made me restart. In the future after I have completed this co-op class and maybe after high school I would really like to maybe stay with this company for either a real job by applying or working under them for a university Software Engineering co-op! An experience like this is what will give me a head start against other software developers that were not as lucky as me to gain this experience.

Week of November 7, 2022

Student:  Rachel Morris, Grade 12

Placement:  Captain R. Wilson P.S.


My main tasks and responsibilities are to play and interact with the students, work at the literacy table  to complete a writing activity one-on-one with the students, and to help them get ready for outdoor recess by assisting them with their outdoor gear.


I think an important skill I have learned is how to communicate with the little kids. This skill is so important because small children communicate and respond to different types of situations a little differently than older people. Prior to this placement, I was only communicating with older people, so it is nice to communicate with a wide variety of people. 


My placement has helped me in many different ways with my post-secondary plans. It has helped me better understand if working with small children is enjoyable and a good fit for me.  I enjoy working one-on-one with those kids that need a little extra help. This was important because my plans for post-secondary always included working with children.

Week of October 31, 2022

Student:  Lola Chan, Grade 12

Placement:  Oakmed Family Health Team


As a member of the Oakmed Family Health Team, my main jobs are to check in patients for their appointments, and properly prepare them for the doctor by taking their height, weight, and blood pressure. I also do some behind the scenes work of managing phone calls regarding vaccinations, contact info, and incoming faxes. 


The most important skills I’ve learned is how to cordially welcome patients and navigate them through their needs. Not everyone is going to be friendly, but having the skills of empathy and compassion can really make all the difference for a patient and overall make the process easier. 


Co-op is a great way to introduce students to a field they may be interested in, without making a big commitment. Because it takes place for a full semester, you get to experience first-hand the day to day life of a person in that field, before fully deciding you want to pursue that career. It’s a fantastic opportunity to get a more realistic viewpoint of jobs you may be interested in, and I’d recommend it to anyone who is considering, or has more questions, about the pathway they want to take after highschool. 

Week of October 24, 2022

Student:  Alyssa McGuire, Grade 11

Placement:  Burloak Animal Hospital


Burloak Animal Hospital has provided me with the opportunity to shadow skilled veterinarians and veterinary technicians in their day-to-day work. My main responsibilities include caring for the boarded animals (i.e. cleaning out their kennels/cages, feeding them, and walking the dogs). I also assist the animal care assistants with setting up for surgery and assist the vet technicians with injections by performing restraint and distraction techniques. When the animals are all taken care of, I help clean up by disinfecting the surgical tables, sterilizing the instruments, and doing laundry.


The most important skills I have learned include communication under high pressure situations as well as learning to react quickly when things don’t go as planned. I have also learned how to restrain and distract animals during injections and the proper technique to hold and lift various animals as well. This is highly beneficial for future work with animals, as being able to prepare for the unpredictable is important when dealing with animals. Along with these skills, I have become more comfortable around aggressive or nervous animals, and therefore I am able to provide a more comfortable environment for the patients.


I have set my sights on Ontario Veterinary College at the University of Guelph for many years now. I hope to get into any one of the veterinary schools in Canada and plan to study Animal Biology for my undergraduate degree. Co-op has greatly helped solidify my dream of becoming a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, as I have really enjoyed the work and learning that goes into treating animals. This experience has also given me valuable skills to transfer onto my resume when I do apply to these programs, as vet schools often look for experience and knowledge with and about animals in a medical setting. Many of the veterinarians at this clinic have attended OVC, and have provided valuable insight into the field. My placement has allowed me to develop crucial skills that will aid me in my future academic endeavors.