Celebrating National Co-op Week

March 17, 2016:

For over 30 years, JDI businesses have welcomed co-op students to our operations. Often these co-op students grow to become the next generation of leaders in our company.  Accountant Dan Marino, engineer Susan Coulombe, IT professional Susan Schurman and business professional Brooke McAloney  are all examples of employees who began their career with a co-op work term at J.D. Irving, Limited.  


JDI forecasts hiring 650 students across operations in co-op, internship, and summer positions in 2016. Between 2016 and 2018, JDI forecasts over 2,000 student positions. JDI is focused on working with students and providing full-time job opportunities to qualified new graduates. In 2015, we hired 4,239 people across our operations; this includes over 100 new university and college graduates from the class of 2015. 60 of these new graduates work within our New Brunswick operations.

JDI has been recognized as Top Employer of Youth by the Conference Board of Canada and was recently recognized by Dalhousie University’s Career Management Services as the Atlantic Canadian Employer of the Year for co-op students and new grads. 

Each term, co-op students with JDI have the unique opportunity to tour our business operations and sit down with company vice presidents for the VP round table. 

JDI is celebrating National Co-op Week by showcasing some of our talented co-op students. Who better to share the value of co-op than our current students? See their testimonials below:

  CoOpWeek16
Sidney Piekarski, University of New Brunswick, Saint John; Sonya Sun, University of New Brunswick, Saint John; Emily Robinson, Mount Saint Vincent University; Andrew Cameron, Memorial University of Newfoundland; Jonah McDonald, University of New Brunswick Saint John; Andru Ferguson, University of New Brunswick Saint John; Ryann McNamara, Dalhousie University


"I don’t think people realize how much exposure you have to different industries while working at JDI. I have worked with people in oil and gas, construction, railway, transportation, environmental and a few others as well." -Andrew Cameron, Naval Architect Co-op Student, Atlantic Towing

“I would recommend a co-op with JDI for anyone looking for an employer who really cares about your personal development. The communication is great between my supervisors and I which has enabled me to be exposed to a lot of opportunities that I might not have gotten anywhere else. Something cool people may not know about working with JDI is how big the company actually is. Learning about everything JDI is involved in as well as the business in general is really fascinating.”  -Ryann McNamara, Dalhousie University, Accounting Co-op Student, JDI

“I would recommend a co-op term with JDI to students in my program because it gives you real-life experience in the industry that is invaluable to your future career. I don’t think people realize how passionate the employees are and how much pride they take in their work here at JDI.”  -Emily Robinson, Mount Saint Vincent University, Public Relations Co-op Student, JDI

“The best part of my co-op term has been the experiences and confidence I’ve gained. Not only have I been able to present my work to some of the top leaders and VP’s, but I’ve also had them genuinely listen and give constructive feedback. I don’t think people realize how trusting in your abilities JDI is. Here they give you real work, you’re a relevant employee, they value your opinion and are always open to hearing your ideas.”  -Sidney Piekarski, University of New Brunswick Saint John Social Media Administrator, JDI

“I never feel as if I am bothering someone when I ask a question, and they definitely go the extra mile to help me gain a deeper insight.” - Justin Collins, Dalhousie University, Continuous Improvement Student, Irving Tissue  

“Working at JDI has been a wonderful experience. As an accounting student, I’ve had a really good chance to see what real life accounting is like and get involved. The team-based working environment helped me gain strong communication and teamwork skills. I love the culture of continuous improvement! Outside the workplace, there are also so many fun activities going on all the time in Saint John. My advice to accounting students? Don’t hesitate to join and get ready to gain tons of excellent experience!” – Sonya Sun, University of New Brunswick, Saint John, Accounting Co-op Student, JDI

“The best part of my Co-op term so far has been the variety of projects. This variety has allowed me to expand my experience and better define where my interests lay.” - Andru Ferguson, University of New Brunswick Saint John, Business Analyst Student, JDI

“As a co-op student, JDI has been a great company to be a part of because they believe heavily in giving me the opportunity to try different things in order to develop a wide range of skills that will enable me to successfully pursue a career." -Jonah McDonald, University of New Brunswick Saint John, Business Analyst Student, JDI 

  Co-OpWeek2016
 Victoria Turpin, Mount Saint Vincent University; Adam Karmali, Dalhousie University; Taylor Wilson, Memorial University of Newfoundland; Maggie Daley, Memorial University of Newfoundland


“It’s truly rewarding to be a part of such a large shipbuilding project in Atlantic Canada! What I think other students should know about working at the shipyard is the number of opportunities it can open up for them. With so many employees in the Halifax Shipyard the number of networking and connection possibilities are endless. It is a great way to meet and learn from people who work in your area of study.” -Maggie Daley, Memorial University, Engineering Student, Halifax Shipyard

“The best part of my co-op is that no two days are ever the same. It’s exciting to get to work in both my office as well as in the assembly hall. I get the opportunity to work with both the Events Coordinator and the Internal Communications Specialist so I’m gaining experience in multiple disciplines while on the same work term.” -Victoria Turpin, Mount Saint Vincent University, Public Relations Co-op Student, Halifax Shipyard

“I would recommend a co-op position with JDI for the opportunity to experience a one-of-a-kind work placement in one of the most technologically advanced shipyards in North America. As a naval architectural engineering student there is no better place to gain industry experience than a work term position at the Halifax Shipyard. The people, the technology, and the diverse workforce are all part of what makes this job so exciting!” -Taylor Wilson, Memorial University, Naval Architectural Engineering Student, Halifax Shipyard

“My co-op experience with Halifax Shipyard has been extremely fun and productive. My colleagues make such an enjoyable atmosphere that I look forward to coming to work every morning.” -Adam Karmali, Dalhousie University, Supply Chain Student, Halifax Shipyard