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Volunteers are the heart and soul of our organization.

Volunteers make up 100 percent of our workforce within the organization. From the Board of Directors to the Seminar Planning Committee members to three-day staff, no one is paid a salary or wage. This enables us to invest all donations and gifts into the three-day seminar.

COLS staff and volunteers are often student ambassadors who see the value in what we do and return year after year to ensure that the next generation of students have even better experiences than they did. However, everyone is welcome to get involved and become part of the COLS family.

The personal, professional, and lived experiences of our volunteers make up who we are. We come from different walks of life and professions, such as the public, broader-public, and private sectors in government, business, education, non-profits, the trades, the arts, and many more.

Getting involved

Opportunities to get involved that fit your schedule.

Getting involved with COLS can include as much or as little involvement, whatever suits your schedule and lifestyle. We provide several opportunities, and everyone is welcome to participate in planning the annual conference, holding alumni events, socials, or fundraisers, or can apply to be part of our three-day staff. Continue reading about the various ways you can contribute to our organization below.

Seminar Planning Committee

The Seminar Planning Committee (SPC) is responsible for the day-to-day operations and planning of the annual seminar.

Each September, the committee begins planning the seminar, raising the necessary funds and sending out invitation packages to hundreds of public and private schools eligible to apply to represent their school at the all-expenses-paid, three-day seminar.

The committee is led by one or two Seminar Chairs, and everyone is welcome to attend meetings, provide input, offer suggestions on how to improve the COLS program, and take on tasks that further the committee's goals.

Three-day seminar staff

We post an application process for staff positions at our annual three-day seminar. These positions include:

  • Senior Leaders (aged 21 or over)
  • Junior Leaders (between the ages of 16 and 20)
  • Logistics (behind-the-scenes staff responsible for setup and takedown of activities)
  • Photographer
  • First-aid/medic/nurse
  • Auxiliary staff (handling our clothing store or preparing snacks)

We typically accept between 40-50 staff each year who are not required to pay any fees to attend the seminar, just like students. Staff over the age of 18 must provide a clear Vulnerable Sector Police Check and take part in a one-day in-person training a couple of weeks before the seminar.

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