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Placement Organization: Upstream
Position Title: Communications Assistant
Number of Possible Placements Available: 2
Working Site’s Location: Work from home / meet via video conference


Company Bio:

Upstream is a national communications think tank working with a growing movement of people who recognize that social, ecological, and economic conditions shape people’s health and the wellbeing of our communities. By strategically promoting the upstream public health frame, we’re nurturing a national conversation about how to make better public policy that leads to a more equitable and healthier society.


  • Managing social media presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
  • Researching content for biweekly e-newsletter
  • Researching and generating blog content for website
  • Updating and developing Nationbuilder site and/or populating new website
  • Updating online database and media list
  • Providing communications support to ongoing projects
  • Conducting marketing and audience development research


  • Ability to work remotely and independently.
  • Ability to learn new online applications.
  • Ability to research and summarize research findings clearly.
  • Interest in public health and/or social justice.
  • Proficient in both their oral and written communication.
  • Punctual and professional in their approach to the work assigned.
  • Willing to experiment with new approaches to communication and media.

Additional Assets:

  • Experience working with NationBuilder or similar CRM.
  • Graphic design capability.
  • Proficiency in French.
  • Experience in the non-profit sector or on a political campaign.

Student Experience:

Victoria Meyer

What kind of work did you do? During my placement so far this term I worked on projects relating to the field of communications. Since my placement is a work-from-home position, I had conference calls with my supervisor each week to discuss my goals for the week. I handle Upstream's Twitter and Facebook accounts, and with that, I calculate the monthly metric reports to see which posts reached who the most. I have also put together articles focusing on the importance of the youth vote as well as the minimum wage in Ontario.
What was your overall experience?
My overall experience so far is good. I do not have the same hands-on experience as an on-site position, however, my supervisor and I set my goals and work together to make sure I get my work done in a timely manner.
What skill sets did you develop throughout the process?
Throughout my process, I have worked well on my communication skills through video calls, and interviews that I conducted for my articles. My writing and research skills also expanded as I had to perform research on topics that I was not entirely familiar with before. Managing a professional social media account also added to my experience.
How has this prepared you for a career?
Since I aspire to be a journalist in the future, the fact that with Upstream I had to do a lot of research and writing has definitely contributed to my future career. Interview skills are highly important for a journalist and before my placement I had little experience in interviewing others. Managing a professional social media account is also very important these days as many journalists take to social media to spread information. With Upstream I have published an article that contributes to my portfolio of published works.
If you had to recommend this course to someone, what would you say?
I have already recommended this course to others because I think it is a very good thing to get hands-on experience in the field of your choice. In this case, my field is communications and media, however, there are marketing positions available in this course. It has given me confidence for my future in journalism and/or media and there is still so much that I have to learn. This is a course that one can learn from and gain cherishable memories from.