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Cooperative Education (Co-op)

Cooperative Education (Co-op) unites the classroom and the workplace, allowing students to engage in real-world applications of their academic pursuits. Co-op is available to business students majoring in Accounting; Business Intelligence; Finance; Financial Planning; a series of Management majors (Business Administration; Family Business and Entrepreneurship; International Business; Managing Human Capital; Leadership, Ethics and Organizational Sustainability); Marketing; Risk Management and Insurance; Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Marketing; and Sports Marketing.The Food Marketing Department administers a separate Co-op Program for its students.

Through two full-time, paid experiences (creating one year of work experience within the four-year degree), Co-op has proven to be an instrumental way for students to discover and live their professional passions. The Co-op work terms take place: 1) from September to December of the sophomore year and 2) from January to August of the junior year. The hourly pay rate for the first Co-op ranges between $10 and $15 an hour, the hourly pay rate for the second Co-op work term ranges between $15 and $20 an hour. This translates to approximately $25,000 in earnings across the two work terms.

The first work term is a more general experience, introducing students to the fundamental demands of work and providing them with workplace tasks that meet their introductory-level skills and knowledge. The second work term is comparatively more in-depth, allowing students to participate in higher-level responsibilities. Students may work for the same employer for both work experiences or opt to work for different employers.

Co-op students enroll in two summer semesters (the summers following the freshman and sophomore years). The summer semesters, which run from mid-May to mid-July, replace the semesters that students work. Co-op students commonly report enjoying the summer semesters, particularly the cohesiveness and collaboration that exists among the students in the Program and the academic success that often results.

A Co-op student’s schedule proceeds like this:

Class

Fall

Spring

Summer

Freshman

Study

Study

Study

Sophomore

Work

Study

Study

Junior

Study

Work

Work

Senior

Study

Study/Graduate

 

A student who wants to participate in Co-op must:

  • Be a full-time day student in the Haub School of Business.
  • Have completed the first semester of the sophomore year before starting the first Co-op work term.
  • Have completed the junior year before starting the second Co-op work term.
  • Maintain a minimum overall grade point average of 2.5 throughout his/her college career and be in good disciplinary standing to enter and remain in the Co-op Program.

Additional Important Details:

Students can join Co-op by completing a short application that is available at the Co-op Office or at classroom/campus information sessions.

Students should register for Co-op during the first semester of the freshman year (usually by or near November 1). Students may enroll later; however, the advantage to enrolling early is wiser course selection: the Co-op Program guides students into specific courses for the spring semester to prevent scheduling conflicts with the courses that need to be taken during the summer semester. Additionally, Co-op students enjoy a host of special programming (resume writing and interviewing workshops; social gatherings; networking nights; site visits to companies, etc.). Only students who have enrolled in Co-op will know about and be eligible to participate in these events.

Because of changing job market conditions and variations in students’ skills and abilities as they relate to employers’ needs, the Co-op Program cannot guarantee jobs. However, the Director works diligently with students to help them engage in the most successful job search possible with the companies that post Co-op positions with the Co-op Program.

While on work assignments, Co-op students are classified as full-time. Full tuition must be paid for the two summer semesters (which replace the fall semester of the sophomore year and the spring semester of the junior year). A monthly payment plan option is available to divide the summer semester tuition across several months. There are no tuition charges for the two work terms.

Students who are contemplating Co-op must meet with a Hawk Central counselor to investigate how, if at all, Co-op will affect their financial aid package.

On-campus housing is available to Co-op students during the summer semesters and during the work experiences for students who are eligible for it.

For additional information, please call the Co-op office at 610-660-1103 or visit the Co-op office in Mandeville 314.