The Future of Work Integrated Learning


Pascale Bédard, Youth Employment Counsellor 

What is Work Integrated Learning (WIL)?

It is a 3-year pilot program funded by Future Skills Centre and the Government of Alberta’s Ministry of Advanced Education that provides paid work experience for post-secondary students in their field of study. The program aims to retain talent and connect students to local employer partners. Students are provided with opportunities to develop practical skills in the workplace, therefore becoming more employable upon graduation from a post-secondary program. This also benefits employers, who gain access to emerging local talent for their business needs.

The following post-secondary institutions have started to provide work-integrated learning opportunities as part of their curriculum: University of Calgary, Bow Valley College, Alberta University of the Arts, Ambrose University, St. Mary’s University, Southern Alberta Technology Institute and Mount Royal University.

What are some examples of WIL?

-          Apprenticeship

-          Co-op education

-          Internship

-          Entrepreneurship

-          Applied research project

-          Clinical placement

-          Field placement

-          Project-based coursework

-          Teaching lab

-          Interactive simulations

-          Job shadowing

Why should I choose a program that has a Work Integrated Learning component?

WIL provides students with several opportunities to gain practical work experience on the job market. This allows students to launch their careers upon graduation. It is also advantageous for employers, as they get to train new talent and stimulate the economy. It encourages job creation and collaboration between employers and post-secondary institutions.

How can I find out more about WIL?

Every post-secondary institution has information about their programs and WIL opportunities on their respective website. If you would like assistance with selecting the right program for you, the Youth Employment Centre can help you. Come and meet with one of our career and employment counsellors. For more information, visit

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