unpaid student placements bannerUnpaid Student Placements

Public Health will accept a limited number of unpaid students who have a required placement/practicum to complete in order to graduate from their school/academic program. 

Unpaid student placements are offered throughout the year in the following disciplines, but are not limited to:

For information on how to prepare for a Public Health placement, check the Resources and Foundation Documents to Prepare and Assist Nursing Students for a Public Health Placement document.

Eligibility criteria for unpaid student placements

To be eligible for an unpaid student placement, you will need to be enrolled in a school/academic program which requires you to complete an unpaid placement/practicum in order to graduate.

Application process for unpaid student placements

Educational institutions typically request unpaid student placements for their students.  Some educational institutions encourage their students to find placements on their own. Both are acceptable ways to begin the placement process.

Prior to being considered for an unpaid student placement, all students must complete the on-line Unpaid Student Placement Application. The online application is used to gather information about your:

  • Educational institution
  • Program/current year
  • Areas of interest
  • Anticipated placement start/end dates
  • Placement availability
  • Academic coordinators

Cover letter/resume - please note that cover letters and resumes are not used to screen applicants, but rather to provide information to the assigned preceptor on your education and work experience in order to better prepare for your orientation.

Placement process

Request - educational institution or student contacts Public Health to request an unpaid student placement.  Although students are accepted throughout the year, it is recommended that requests for placements are submitted as follows:

Placement period Deadline for student requests
Winter term (January - April) October 31
Spring/Summer term (May - August) February 28
Fall term (September - December) June 30

Application - the student completes the Unpaid Student Placement Application

Screening - Public Health determines if application is accepted based on the fit of requested placement, the number of unpaid student placement requests, availability of preceptors, and program needs

Interview - for some unpaid placements, student applicants will be interviewed to collect further information and determineif the student has the knowledge, skills and abilities to complete the placement successfully

Acceptance/Decline - Public Health confirms/declines the unpaid student placement with educational institution or student. Public Health will do its best to match student's areas of interest to available placements, but this isn't always possible.  Students may be placed in placements outside their areas of interest.

Confirmation Letters - a couple of weeks prior to the start of a confirmed unpaid student placement, students will receive a confirmation letter, which includes the start/end dates of placements, assigned preceptor and/or manager and orientation dates.

What to expect in the unpaid student placement?

While working in Public Health, you will be assigned to a preceptor and/or manager in one of our program areas. You will receive mandatory corporate, departmental, program and position specific orientation/training to ensure that you are prepared to complete your work in a safe and efficient manner. 

You will be provided with work projects and placement activities that will be appropriate to your level of knowledge and experience for the duration of the placement. If you are required to complete a structured learning plan, you will work in collaboration with your preceptor and/or manager to define your learning goals and assess your progress as per your academic requirements.