The Cheriton School of Computer Science is looking for exceptional students currently enrolled in a Computer Science program (or related area) who have a keen interest in research and/or in pursuing graduate studies.
Students will participate in a four-month, full-time, research-based co-op term (currently remotely due to COVID-19) to work directly with a faculty supervisor in a particular research area such as, Computer Security, Artificial Intelligence, Human-Computer Interaction, Theoretical Computer Science, and much more.
Fall 2021 project descriptions are available at https://grec.cs.uwaterloo.ca/.
Applications for the Fall 2021 (September-December) co-op term are now closed.
For questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Students who are currently in 3rd or 4th year are eligible to apply; exceptional students from earlier terms will also be considered.
- A cumulative average of at least 80% is required.
- Preference is given to students enrolled in the Computer Science major or related programs, with a strong interest in research and/or graduate studies.
A student can only do one URF/Co-op per term, and must be on a co-op term or otherwise not taking courses. Note that International Students need a SIN# and work permit to work in Canada. During the term, it is expected that students will be working remotely from a location within Canada.
If you are eligible, prepare a single PDF file (titled YourFirstName_YourLastName.pdf), which must contain the following information:
- An up-to-date CV/Resume
- A recent transcript
- A 1-page personal/research statement, stating (1) what your research interests are, (2) what your future plans are and why you want to pursue the URF, (3) indicate which research projects (in order of preference) you are interested in working on. You can either name a faculty supervisor in the “Potential Supervisors” list below, or name a faculty member that you have an existing connection with.
- a letter of recommendation from a professor at your university (optional, but encouraged).
Please note that incomplete applications (missing any of the items above) will not be considered.
Submitting an Application
- If you are a co-op student, apply to our job posting through your university’s co-op system and submit your PDF file on the co-op site. If the system does not allow attachments, you can submit your PDF file to the URF application vault folder.
- If you are NOT a co-op student, upload your PDF file to the URF application vault folder.
For hiring URFs for the Winter 2022 (January to April) term, we will start to accept applications in September.
Funding for Faculty
Students will receive a minimum of $12,000/term for their co-op placement
- The School will contribute $7,500/student
- NSERC USRA + faculty to top up the difference
Example: Student X is awarded a research fellowship for a term, the school will provide $7,500 toward their salary. If they receive an NSERC USRA for $4,500, then the supervisor would not need to contribute anything. If the student does not get NSERC USRA, the supervisor would need to contribute at least $4,500.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How can I connect with a supervisor?
- You can connect with an advisor in multiple ways. You can browse through the list of potential faculty advisors and their project descriptions below to see which research project you are interested in. If you have an existing connection with a CS faculty at Waterloo, you can also name a faculty supervisor who is not on the list. In your personal/research statement, please indicate which research projects (in order of preference) you are interested in working on.
- Do I need to have a recommendation letter when I apply?
- The recommendation letter is optional but encouraged, as it provides us with more information about your background and experiences.
- What should I include in my personal statement?
We want to hear what you are passionate about and why you want to pursue a work term in research.
How will candidates be selected for this role?
Your application will be reviewed by a committee, consisted of faculty members and graduate students. Students will be selected for an interview, which is online and lasts 30 minutes. Some students may be asked to attend a second interview with a faculty supervisor. After the interviews, the committee members will independently rate each student’s application, then meet to discuss the aggregated results. The decision takes into account the calibre of the student, faculty recommendation/endorsement, as well as factors such as EDI (equity, inclusion, diversity), broad coverage of and equal representation from different research areas/topics, previous history of the faculty/student being awarded an URF, etc.
Do I need prior research experience to be eligible?
No! We accept both candidates with and without prior research experience. Just tell us why you have a keen interest in research on your personal statement.
Can I apply if I am not a Computer Science student?
Yes, you can still apply.
If I am an international student, can I still apply?
Yes, as long as you have a work permit and plan to reside in Canada during the URF work term, you can apply.
If I have questions, whom should I email?
If you have questions about the URF program or how to submit your application, please contact email@example.com.