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Cooperative Education

The co-op/field experience program is a unique form of education that integrates classroom study with mostly paid, planned and supervised work experience in the public and private sectors.  Your work experience supplements your classroom learning with practical workplace skills as you participate in the reality of the world of work, thereby increasing your self-confidence, career direction and understanding of your chosen profession. Each co-op/field experience course has two (2) components:
  1. Work experience:(minimum of 180 hours over the course of the semester) in a job related to your major
  2. Seminar class: meets for 2 hours every other week (see below) to discuss work-related professional development topics
If you are already employed in a career-related position, you may be able to use your job for Co-op credit with the approval of the department.  If you don't, we'll provide job search assistance. While we can not guarantee placement, we'll make every effort to assist you in securing an appropriate job or internship as long as you contact us early enough to allow for an appropriate job search before the semester begins.  We'll also help you with resume writing, interview skills and all other aspects of job search assistance.  Students must have an approved job prior to registering for a co-op/field experience class (see below for additional information about registering). The duration of employment is for the semester only.  Neither you nor the employer is committed beyond the end of the term, although a number of co-op employers do hire their students on a permanent basis. Registration for classes requires a signature from Counseling & Career Services and/or your department chair, therefore registration cannot be completed online.

The cooperative education seminar class meets on alternate Tuesday evenings from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Students enrolled in the various field experience courses meet together in the seminar class to discuss issues relevant to the workplace.  Topics include customer service, diversity in the workplace, conflict resolution and team-building skills.  In addition, with assistance from their employers, students develop five work-related learning objectives which they complete during the semester.  Each student submits a portfolio which documents their cooperative education experience. Check here for a listing of co-op field experience courses and the pre-reqs.