BA 2010: Psychology


The benefits from Kelsey Beninger’s experiences as an Arts Co-op program graduate speak for themselves: she has landed a great job immediately after graduation, and her hands-on experience in health and community development has ensured her acceptance into the prestigious London School of Economics for graduate studies.

Kelsey’s glowing future career and academic prospects did not come through luck or by chance. Her work terms in the non-profit sector and within professional academic environments seamlessly connected her passion for health and community development and her studies in psychology, a rarity in a work world where many don’t have the opportunity to do what they love.

She completed her first work term with the Disabled Sailing Association at Vancouver’s Disability Association, managing the scheduling and budgeting of the program and having her fair share of memorable experiences! Kelsey recalls a particularly memorable day involving, “Nonexistent winds resulting in a 4 hour late arrival for lunch, just in time for an island-wide power outage with no way of cooking food – not to mention a sailboat caravan with a snapped line, requiring an instructor to dive into the freezing ocean to round up the sailboats by hand! It was a long and taxing day but epic and quite a learning experience.”

Her 2nd work term as a Sponsored Representative at the United Way of the Lower Mainland (UW) took her fundraising and presentation skills to a whole new level. She coordinated 40 fundraising campaigns and presented over 50 presentations in Vancouver and assisted in raising a staggering $1,800,000 with a team of four – not an easy feat by any stretch of imagination!

Kelsey then went global, working as an Events Assistant for the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore (NUS). At NUS, she coordinated logistics of multiple international academic conferences and forums and played a key role in their marketing campaign. She completed her fourth and final work term at the Office of Learning Technology (OLT) at UBC researching, writing publications and providing support for their marketing projects.

When asked how Co-op benefited her, Kelsey enthusiastically says, “Countless ways! My Co-op work terms are the reason I was able to find a great job immediately after graduation.” Furthermore, her current manager specifically points out how, “Her international conference planning in Singapore, her report writing and public speaking with UW, and her technical programming and website experiences at OLT,” all contributed to her incredibly versatile skill set that sets her apart from the average student upon graduation.

Kelsey has a message for students considering the Co-op program: “Don’t think twice. It’s an invaluable opportunity that few people get the chance to do. Not only did it give me a much needed break from endless hours of studying, it allowed me to learn more about myself and challenge myself to be better.”

To top it off, for her outstanding efforts and dedication to her work terms and the Arts Co-op Program Kelsey was also awarded the Arts Co-op Student of the Year award for the 2009-2010 academic year. Without a doubt, Kelsey has worked hard and is deservedly reaping the benefits that the Arts Co-op Program has to offer. Because her work terms showed her what work environments she thrives in, she can pursue future career interests with confidence of true success.