Make the most of your studies

A high-quality education involves much more than absorbing stimulating knowledge in a lecture hall. The days of seeing a university degree as a ticket to buying a job are over. With us, you’ll gain valuable professional skills with top employers through our CO-OP, internship and work-study programs. You’ll become a truely global citizen by taking part in international exchanges that open doors to 52 countries, one of the top four university exchange programs in Canada. You’ll start conducting research right away as an undergraduate. And you can do it all in French, English or both.

Page Program
One reason why Andrea, a third-year health sciences student, decided to leave Winnipeg and study at uOttawa was that she wanted to be a House of Commons page. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to study political science or dream of becoming the next prime minister to be a page. For Andrea, her interest in politics actually grew as result of her page experience.

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Narimane just returned from a Summer Undergraduate International Research Internship (SIRI) in Taiwan. “I loved my experience. I have always dreamed of going to Asia, and I was not disappointed! The country was beautiful and so diverse in its landscapes, from beaches to skyscrapers to the city that inspired Spirited Away hidden away in the mountains. I got to not only enjoy my vacation but also to work in a lab, learning skills in histology and microscopy. At the end of my internship, I was able to visualize the cerebrovascular system of a rat brain slice using fluorescent dyes and a multi-photon microscope.”

Working while studying

While she was studying communication, Gabrielle found a job at Parks Canada through the Federal Student Work Experience Program. The job allowed her to help plan events and create posters and videos, and to write regularly. In spring 2018, after she graduated, her student job turned into a full-time job. “It’s really fun. I feel I’m listened to, and I see that my feedback is important. I like making real things that will be used and applying what I learned in my courses,” she says. What’s next? Attending the Montreal Summit on Innovation and meeting Snoop Dogg there!
Rohan, a software engineering student, secured a work term at Kijiji in Toronto. “During my short time at Kijiji, I’ve been mostly working on enhancing the new front-end for their website with a team of brilliant developers. More specifically, I’m working on restyling the current flow of posting an ad on Kijiji (it’s prettier now). Their office has the culture and environment of a startup, regardless of their long-lasting presence in the market. Working on a platform which millions of Canadians resort to for selling their items and services has been a great learning experience to ensure quality and user accessibility in everything that’s shipped. On top of that, the nerf gunfights are pretty sweet.”

Interested in a global experience or an international career?

The University of Ottawa has the most international exchange and placement programs in Ontario, and we’re among the top 4 in Canada. We’re focused on global experiences for our students, teachers and researchers, and we have academic partnerships with 285 universities in more than 50 countries. Find out more about our exchange programs.
Making the top three at a national competition, four years’ running As members of Enactus uOttawa, students collaborate on cutting-edge projects that have a lasting social impact on communities. This energetic campus club takes a business-minded approach to solving social problems. Teams of students from diverse backgrounds unleash their entrepreneurial spirit to make the world a better place, showcasing their best ideas at national and global competitions. As they join forces with communities to create social enterprises and useful training programs, Enactus entrepreneurs typically aim high.
Caroline, a student in psychology and linguistics, started working in a learning centre while doing her bachelor’s. As an educational support worker, she helps students with attention disorders or learning disabilities, offering them learning strategies they can use in school. “It’s really interesting to see how the theory we learn in our courses is reflected in real life. I find it gratifying to see that the help I give students has a genuine impact on their life. I really feel more confident and better prepared for the workforce.” Caroline plans to do a master’s in Speech-Language Pathology after her bachelor’s, and the clinic has already offered her the chance to come back full time when she graduates!
Caption: Growcer project manager Alida Burke and Enactus uOttawa president Corey Ellis in Iqaluit.

Learning and growing together for a better world When Corey Ellis and Alida Burke ran entrepreneurship workshops in Iqaluit, they experienced firsthand the challenges posed by food insecurity in Canada’s North. Undaunted by these challenges, they worked with other members of Enactus uOttawa to find a solution. Meet “The Growcer”, a high-yield hydroponic farming system using no soil and minimal water, powered by low-cost LED lights, and employing local people. “We wanted to support the communities’ goals for local food and self-reliance, and reduce dependence on expensive imports,” Corey says. They hope to get Growcers up and running soon in a dozen other sites, mostly First Nations and Inuit communities – a remarkable way to cap off a formative university experience with lasting impact. Visit to be inspired.
Study and work. Put what you’re learning into practice with CO-OP. Alternating between study terms and work placements, you’ll gain 16 months of hands-on experience in your field. You’ll also earn while you learn — between $35,000 and $45,000 over the course of your four work placements. CO-OP placements are also an opportunity to brush up on your interview skills and build valuable professional networks so you’re workplace-ready when you graduate.

French immersion boosts the value of your degree

Having a “French Immersion” mention on your diploma not only says to employers that you’re somebody with French language skills — it says that you’re somebody who can take on a challenge. That’s why Madison chose French immersion — because she knew it would help her on the job market. Using University resources like the French immersion mentoring centre, she was able to adjust to studying in French and expand her social circle.

Paying for your studies. Did you know that if you register in a French-language program, French immersion or extended French you could get a $4,000 bursary? Also, if you’re facing financial difficulties, have high grades or are active in your community, the University of Ottawa offers scholarships, bursaries and financial aid that may be just right for you. Each year, we award close to $42M to students at the undergrad level. Regardless of your situation, we can help you pay for your studies!
Meet Sebastian, a young Ottawa-born superhero. As his left hand is partially deformed, he was not able to grip objects or ride his bike. A conventional prosthetic hand would have cost his family $20,000 a year, and would have had to be changed as he grew. A University competition was organized to create a hand for Sebastian using the 3D printer at the Richard L’Abbé Makerspace. The new hand would have to be inexpensive and easy to alter and reprint. Sebastian chose a design by Shannon Lee, Robert Rayson and Ruben Fernandez whose orange colour made him look like his favourite superhero, Iron Man. The three designers won a cash prize, and felt very proud at having drastically improved the quality of life of Sebastian, who’s now able to ride his bike while looking like a superhero.
Build your personal and professional networks while giving back to the community at uOttawa’s one-stop shop for volunteering. The Michaëlle Jean Centre for Global and Community Engagement will arrange volunteer opportunities in Ottawa and around the world to help you gain experience in your field of study. Every volunteer hour completed during your studies is certified by your Co-curricular Record, and you can even replace a course assignment with a professor-approved community service placement.
Do undergraduate research. You’ve got the drive and the ideas, so don’t wait for graduate studies to start your research. Work with some of the world’s top researchers and institutes in cutting-edge labs and facilities during the second or third year of your undergraduate degree — you can do it with the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) or the Summer Undergraduate International Research Internships (SIRI).
Plan your budget. Be sure to check the financial planning page to download the cash-flow worksheet to plan a budget that works for you. It’s a really handy tool!
The University of Ottawa is among the 10 best universities in Canada according to the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, the 2019 U.S News & World Report Best Global Universities, the 2018 CWTS Leiden Ranking, and the 2018 Academic Ranking of World Universities.
Stand out as a bilingual professional. Speaking a second language will get you ahead in the workplace and in life. The University of Ottawa is the largest English-French bilingual university in the world, and allows you to study in French, in English or in both. You have the right to produce your written work and answer exam questions in the language of your choice, which will allow you to practice and improve your second language, without jeopardizing grades! Bilingual students will graduate with a richer student life, more job opportunities and higher paying jobs!

Aleksander (top-right), Victoire (bottom-right).

Our Aeroplan Miles program lets you take off

The cost of airfare is one of the major obstacles for students hoping to travel overseas, but the Michaëlle Jean Centre for Global and Community Engagement’s Aeroplan Miles program can get you there. Generous alumni and others donate their Aeroplan Miles to send uOttawa students around the world for meaningful community service. A selection committee awards the points to students like Aleksander Brezar, a fourth-year medical student, and Victoire Kpadé, a biochemistry major with a minor in health sciences.

Brezar dreams of becoming a doctor for a humanitarian organization, but he lacked experience in relevant medical settings. The three weeks he spent working in a clinic in an impoverished township near Cape Town, South Africa, have helped him gain the hands-on experience he needs to get closer to his career goals.

Kpadé was curious about a career in international medicine and global public health. The Aeroplan Miles Program helped her get to Ghana, where she worked as a volunteer medical assistant for four months. The experience gave her a renewed focus on her work. When she returned to uOttawa she went on to earn the highest grades of her university career.

Ottawa is home to Canada’s largest research facility, the National Research Council. The Government of Canada’s premier research and technology organization works with clients and partners to provide innovation support, strategic research, and scientific and technical services.
Automatic scholarships. It pays to get good grades! Discover how you could get up to $10,000 automatically during your studies at the University of Ottawa with our automatic scholarships program!

Study abroad and explore the world

Discover the world while earning uOttawa credits on an international exchange. Learn or perfect a language, explore a new culture, and develop an international network of contacts. You’ll even benefit from a guaranteed mobility scholarship of $1,000 to $2,000, depending on the amount of time you spend abroad.

The largest CO-OP program in the Ottawa region, with more paid work terms to gain experience and earn up to $45,000 during your degree. Placements are available in startups, large businesses, NGOs or the government.

A banner year for CO-OP

Students and employers seem to have a growing appetite for CO-OP placements. With steady growth for the fifth year in a row, the CO-OP program helped close to 3,388 uOttawa students gain real world experience in the workplace in 2018.

Our location in the nation’s capital and our reputation as a bilingual university put uOttawa students at an advantage for positions with the Canadian government, where there’s a big demand for bilingual applicants. But many of our CO-OP students also look outside of Ottawa to add a little adventure to their work placements: last year 317 students worked in cities across the country, and 103 went abroad.

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