2020-2021 PEY Co-op Covid 19 FAQs

To our 2020 -2021 PEY Co-op students, we understand it can be a very challenging time. Many of you may have questions. We have compiled some FAQs to help you through this trying time. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us at pey.coop@utoronto.ca if you have any questions.

Due to the progression of Covid-19, my work term has been delayed/ cancelled. Are there financial resources available?

The Engineering Career Centre is in contact with all employers who have hired students to start in Spring/Summer 2020.  Our team is aware that the current situation may result in delaying your start date or for a few employers, it may result to cancellation of job offers.  If this happens, please notify our office of any changes to your original contract.

There is a national government effort to address the issue of students who are losing jobs or unable to find jobs. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced nearly $9 billion in major new supports for post-secondary students and recent graduates.  Visit the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) page to learn more about this benefit and keep informed of other programs and updates on the Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan website. 

The University of Toronto has  Emergency Assistance Grants available to assist current U of T undergraduate students impacted by COVID-19.  The Emergency Undergraduate Grant application for eligible expenses related to the 2020 Summer term will be available on this web page starting May 1st.  Kindly visit the University of Toronto Finances website for more information.


My employer has notified me that my upcoming PEY Co-op work term has been cancelled. What are my options??
Some employers may opt to cancel work terms altogether, especially if their business operations have been severely impacted by Covid-19.  While this is an unfortunate result, we are here to support you.


We understand that a great deal of work went into preparing your application, going through the interview process and finally receiving an offer.  Please share your supervisor or HR representative’s contact information with us so we can connect with them.  They may not be able to change their decision at this point, however, they may do so in the future.  It is quite difficult at this moment to predict what the situation will be like in a few months’ time.


Our recommendation is that you continue to look for positions through the Engineering Career Portal and through your own independent search.  Some companies are continuing to post and interview during this period.  If you find a position outside of the Portal, please let us know so we can assess whether or not it meets the minimum requirements of the PEY Co-op program.


I am supposed to start my work term this upcoming summer, but I’ve decided to end my work term for personal reasons (return to country of origin, catch up on undergraduate studies, etc.). What are my options?
If you are planning to rescind your contract for reasons outside of the pandemic, our office will need to assess your case to ensure we have a better understanding of your situation.  As per our standard policies, your PEY Co-op participation may be in jeopardy.


I am an international student currently abroad, but still want to start my work term in Spring/Summer 2020 in Canada. What should I do?
 The University has provided the following advice for students outside of Canada at the moment.  You may be allowed to enter Canada with your valid study permit.  On March 20th, the Government of Canada announced that foreign nationals overseas will be permitted to return to Canada if they:


  • Have valid study or work permits
  • Have been approved for a study permit prior to the travel restrictions on March 18th, 2020
  • Aren’t exhibiting any symptoms related to Covid-19


Before trying to travel, please check the Government of Canada Covid-19 site to check the exemption status.  When you arrive in Canada your health will be assessed before you leave the port of entry.  You must isolate for 14 days even if you have symptoms.  This is mandatory under a federal Quarantine Act order.


We strongly recommend that you contact the International Student Advisor to discuss your options further.


Can I register back in school if my work term gets cancelled?
The University has made a lot of accommodations to students, staff and faculty regarding policies and guidelines around classes and evaluations.  Should you be required to return to school in Fall 2020, please check with your Undergraduate Advisor on these accommodations.


Am I still required to attend a Transition to Workplace seminar? If so, how can I access it?

All students who have secured PEY Co-op work terms must complete a Transition to Workplace seminar.


If you have not yet attended in-person, you are required to complete the Transition to Workplace seminar through Quercus before you start your work term.  All students registered in PEY Co-op have been added to the course.  Please see the steps below to complete to mark your attendance.


1.       Watch the Transition to Workplace seminar video

2.       Complete and pass the Transition Quiz

3.       Submit your feedback through the survey


If you have already attended in-person, you have completed this requirement.

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