We use cookies to make interactions with our website and services easy and meaningful, to better understand how they are used and to tailor advertising. By using our website or clicking "accept", you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy.

Skip to main content

Making a positive difference in students’ lives

Too many young people leave high school without a clear understanding of the possibilities that exist for their future.

The Business and Education Partnership is an award-winning charity that helps young people better understand and prepare for the world of work, so that they can build their own paths to successful careers.

Our Story

In the early 2000s, leaders from our local business and education communities shared an idea. Waterloo Region has one of the most highly skilled workforces in the world: Why not use that resource to help our kids better understand and prepare for the changing world of work?

Those leaders created the Business & Education Partnership of Waterloo Region. Since 2002, we have connected over 100,000 students to career exploration, skill development and networking opportunities with over 4,000 industry professionals.

Our goal is that youth in Waterloo Region will confidently set goals and plan next steps as they begin to proactively manage their career journey.

To achieve this goal BEP Waterloo Region provides meaningful opportunities for employers to develop their future workforce, engage their current employees in volunteerism, and demonstrate themselves as an employer of choice.

Our work is good for students, good for business, and good for Waterloo Region.

We invite you to join us!

Meet our team

Our team is passionate about informing and inspiring the career development of young people.

Scott Verhoeve

Executive Director

“As a student and student teacher, I met many talented young people who were feeling lost and frustrated about their choices for school and work. As part of the BEP, I’m excited to connect youth to experiences that help them better understand their talents and opportunities!”

April Albano

Program Manager - Youth Innnovation

"I have walked alongside thousands of youth as they decide what is next for them in their education and career. There is nothing better than seeing a students eyes light up when they discover a career that feels like the right fit. Through the BEP we help students during this discovery phase and teach them foundational skills that will help throughout their career journey. I look forward connecting with youth and building up creative confidence!"

Jennifer Birnstihl

Program Manager

"As a mother of 3 youth, I relate to the apprehension and turmoil youth face as they navigate their futures. In my role at BEP, I look forward to helping young people discover career options, embrace their talents and make better informed decisions about their school and career paths. I welcome this opportunity to make a positive difference by sharing my passion for helping others and experiences gained on my own winding career path."

Julie Dreisinger

Program Manager

“As a parent of 2 adult children myself, I have been a first-hand witness to the challenges and uncertainty in deciphering the best way to to help youth with these major decisions around schooling and their career. The resources and experiential opportunities we are able to provide at the BEP ignite my passion; I know I am assisting youth in making wiser and more informed career choices.”

Bethany Correia

Program Coordinator, Youth Innovation

"During my experience as a student, I discovered that community building is a reciprocal process; while I actively dedicated my heart to fostering community on my school campus, the work served me in return as a significant wellness support through my ongoing mental health journey. The BEP praises the gifts of local young people, and aims to make them feel reciprocated within the community, whether that is through helping them explore career choices, championing their innovative ideas, or providing a sense of recognition and belonging. I am so energized by the privilege to grow alongside bright youth in our region!"

Board of Directors

We are leaders from our local business and education communities, working together to build a stronger Waterloo Region.


We thank our supporters for their contribution to making every day Career Day for youth across Waterloo Region.

$50,000 +

$25,000 +

$10,000 +

$5,000 +

$2,500 +


  • • Graham Parkinson
  • • Katherine St. Louis
  • • Nicole Fernandes
  • • Scott Higgins

Join Us

Join us in our mission of educating and inspiring the youth of Waterloo Region.