Wednesday, November 23, 2016 | Daily Bulletin

…an interesting story and good advice

A co-op student’s journey to Harvard and back

by Andreea Perescu

Jonathan Ranisau knows the secret to having a successful co-op work term –and he insists that it takes more than just raw talent alone. Having completed two work terms at Harvard University, Ranisau has some advice for his fellow co-op students: seek out jobs that help improve your individual skill-set.“During co-op, you discover what abilities you need to develop and what knowledge you need to gain for your future goals. You become better at developing your skills, and you are more passionate about your work since you realize their importance,” explained Ranisau, who is in his fourth-year of chemical engineering at Waterloo.During his first work term at Harvard, Ranisau was assigned tasks that tested his knowledge and allowed him to find ways to improve. “I did a lot of fundamental research investigating new areas, helping with some different publications and initiatives,” he said. “I think one huge aspect of co-op is that it allows me to work towards finding interesting solutions rather than just solving problems.” Ranisau’s passion for knowledge and research helped earn him a spot at the Ivy League school for a second work term.To land a highly sought co-op position, Ranisau suggests that students come prepared during interview season. “Securing most of my positions involved a lot of online research on the companies I was interested in,” said Ranisau. “I always wanted to position myself as a knowledgeable candidate.” Other employers that Ranisau has worked with include Xerox Research Centre of Canada, Saint-Gobain Abrasives Canada Inc., Natural Resources Canada and AMBRI INC. He’s exceeded expectations in all of his previous roles and has been asked to return on multiple occasions.Ranisau is excited about his future. He intends to continue learning and making a positive impact wherever he goes. “My ultimate goal is to start my own company,” he said, offering one last piece of advice: “Don’t sit back and let life toss you around – educate yourself enough to set a direction.”

Source: Wednesday, November 23, 2016 | Daily Bulletin

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