Making a difference with hockey

How Co-op for Social Good enables students to experience the positive impacts of their work By Olivia Vanderwal Faculty of Arts Graeme Tooley is a fourth year Global Business and Digital Arts (GBDA) student and avid hockey fan. During his recent co-op term, he had the opportunity to work for Hockey 4 Youth through the Co-op for Social Good program.

"Being able to work for Hockey 4 Youth this past summer was an incredible experience, and I truly felt and saw that the work I was doing was having an impact."

By funding co-op positions at not-for-profit organizations, the Co-op for Social Good program gives students the opportunity to gain valuable work experience while making a difference in their communities. At the same time, not-for-profits who don’t often have the funds available can benefit from the fresh ideas, perspectives, and skills that co-op students bring.

"Being able to connect with charities and non-profits that are doing such good work in the world is something that’s really important to me. And it’s very fulfilling work," says Graeme.

Hockey 4 Youth is a not-for-profit whose mission is to foster inclusion for newcomer teens and youth through hockey programming. They provide equipment, coaching, and on-ice practice time as well as training off the ice to support youth with experiential learning opportunities.

Graeme worked at their Toronto location as a Partnerships and Communications Coordinator, where his role involved social media, marketing, content creation, and video editing. He also worked on a longer-term pitch deck to secure funding with potential partners and make an impact in the Hockey 4 Youth programming.

"One of the reasons I chose to apply to Hockey 4 Youth was I wanted to work in a position where I knew I’d be doing good. I wanted to know that the work I was doing would be making a difference in my community and in Canada as a whole." Graeme adds that his own experience with hockey played a role in his decision. "I really benefited from being able to play hockey growing up, and I wanted to be able to help newcomer youth get that opportunity as well."

While Waterloo co-op students often work at tech firms or corporations, increasingly more students want to make an impact at non-profit organizations. Thanks to Co-op for Social Good , along with the Global Citizen Internships and  Co-op for Community program s, students have more opportunities to make an impact with non-profit organizations.

This Giving Tuesday, join with us and donate now to provide meaningful work opportunities for students like Graeme. The Co-op for Social Good program is made possible with donations from our alumni and friends.