Adam Keunen, 17, of West Lincoln, Ont. was fatally struck by a front-end loader around 9:45 a.m. Friday at Plazek Auto Recycler.
Paramedics and firefighters were unable to save him.
Keunen was a fourth-year student at Beamsville Secondary School, where flags were lowered to half-mast and grief counsellors were on hand.
"Students and staff are in shock, naturally, they're devastated. Adam was a very loved member of the Beamsville community," said Kim Yielding, spokeswoman for the District School Board of Niagara.
"I was really shocked and sad," said one student. "I was just really surprised he died. I knew him."
Because the school year has just started, Yielding said co-op students have only been on their co-op job sites once or twice.
The coroner's office and the Ministry of Labour are working with police on the investigation into his death.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police.