Meet Shawn Erickson. Shawn has been working in co-operative education for 16 years. After completing his BBA with Co-operative Education at the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV), Shawn thought he wanted to go into accounting. However, having completed one of his co-op work terms at the UFV co-op office, when an opportunity came up several years later to work as a co-op instructor at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU), he took it.
Shawn is currently the Director for the Centre for Co-operative Education and Career Services at KPU and oversees three key areas: Co-op Education, Career Services and Volunteer Services. He enjoys the diversity of his job and the people he works with. Three ways Shawn’s co-workers might describe him are: he is a good listener, practically-minded, and honest.
The best career advice Shawn’s ever heard is, “Choose a job you love, and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.” (Confucius). Shawn encourages others “to find something that drives, motivates and inspires you.” What motivates Shawn is seeing the incredible, life-changing impact of co-op on students’ lives and watching them become successful citizens in the community:
“My inspiration is the success of students in the classroom and workplace. My desire to nurture student success involves guiding them in developing strong employability skills. Sharing the passion of a team that shapes future leaders through work integrated learning, makes my contribution to Kwantlen truly a rewarding experience.”
For Shawn, the most valuable aspects of being an ACE member are the relationships and network he builds with his colleagues around the province. It is great that he can reach out to others to have important conversations about the work and gain different perspectives. Finally, on a more personal note, something surprising you may not know about Shawn is he’s getting married in June. He is excited for this new chapter in his life and to put his event planning skills to use ☺ Congrats, Shawn!