Sheridan co-op students win national and provincial awards

Lexi Morrison and Stephanie Loy Son with faculty at the Sheridan Conference Centre during last month’s awards ceremony. (Photo by Laura Erne/Sheridan Sun)


To celebrate National Co-op Week, Sheridan honoured five students on March 28 who excelled in their field placements. Each winner was selected from a different faculty.

“To be eligible to a win a Co-op Student of the Year Award, students must complete a co-op or internship work term during the calendar year,” explained Cory Latimer, manager of co-operative education at Sheridan. “Students are most often nominated by their co-op advisors, but we have had nominations come in directly from employers as well.”

These five were chosen out of 2,100 co-op students for their Summer, Fall and Winter 2016 work terms:

  • Stephanie Loy Son, Faculty of Applied Health and Sciences for Athletic Therapy
  • Kaye (Kawen) Mao, Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design
  • Alexandra Morrison, Pilon School of Business for Accounting
  • Catharine Poehlman, Faculty of Applied Science and Technology
  • Harmandeep Singh Sidhu, Faculty of Science and Technology for Engineering
The five lucky winners of the co-op student of the year awards. (Photo courtesy of Sheridan College)

“The award recognizes well-rounded students that have demonstrated excellence beginning with exemplary performance in their co-op work term,” said Latimer. “They go above and beyond their supervisor’s expectations and raise the bar for what can be expected from students in the workplace. In addition, the award winners need to be very well-rounded through their academic achievements, contributions to the Sheridan community, support of co-operative education and contributions to the local community.”

Mao was the first Sheridan student to be selected for a co-op work term at Google in New York City.

“Co-op makes you better at your craft because you’re able to practice it in a different context than what you do in school, said Mao. “You are able to improve your skills in ways that school can’t push you. If you’re a well-rounded person then you will produce well-rounded work. So co-op is really important because it fills in the gaps that formal education just can’t teach you. You really just need to go for it and chase opportunities. You would be surprised how receptive employers are to your eagerness.”

She was also the national winner of The Canadian Association for Co-operative Education Student of the year award.

“It really is such a big honour,” said Mao. “There are so many exceptional students here at Sheridan. Knowing that, makes receiving this award truly humbling.”

Poehlman was also nominated and won the provincial co-op student of the year award.

Sheridan co-op students have won the provincial award three out of the last four years and the national award four out of the last five.

“I think that is a testament to the engaged, vibrant, positive and hard-working students that make up Sheridan’s campuses and represent Sheridan so well in the industry,” said Latimer.

More than 60 friends, family, faculty and employers attended the ceremony in honour of these students’ achievements last month at the Trafalgar Conference Centre right on campus.