What is Cooperative Education?

Cooperative Education ("Co-op") is an academic focused program which allows students to obtain professional work experience while still in college. It is a unique opportunity for students to apply their academic preparation to "real world" situations in business and industry. At Stevens, the co-op program will provide you with the chance to combine classroom study with periods of paid professional employment directly related to your major and career goals. Students benefit from the co-op program in many ways. Co-op work experiences provide students with an opportunity to:

Explore Career Interests and Goals

The Cooperative Education staff is committed to providing you with a co-op experience that is most suited to your career interests and goals. Our office has strong on-going relationships with industry and is able to connect you to organizations that are seeking your particular expertise. You will receive individual guidance and support to prepare you for your co-op assignment and to make a smooth transition from student to professional. As a co-op student at Stevens, you have the opportunity to work for a diverse number of companies - from Fortune 500 corporations to small entrepreneurial firms. Employers range from Becton Dickinson, Colgate Palmolive, Mindray North America, Movado to PSEG. By varying your experiences, you will be able to confirm your career objectives before you graduate.

Use the Workplace as Your Classroom

You will be able to enhance your educational experience by applying what you learned in the classroom to solve real world problems in industry. You could be responsible for providing engineering support for the design of a water treatment facility, repairing a telecommunications system or even creating customized software. Practical, hands-on work experience will help you confirm your choice of major that is right for you.

Gain Professional Development

Co-op students are among the most successful in finding lucrative positions in industry and your career will benefit from your co-op experience. As a co-op student, you will gain confidence that you can succeed in the workplace. You will also have the opportunity to further develop your interpersonal, communication and leadership skills in a professional environment. You can cultivate a network of professional contacts that will prove helpful over the course of your career.

How to Get Started

First year students should attend all co-op seminars, held in both the Fall and Spring Semesters of the freshman year.

In order to be eligible to participate in co-op interviews for their first placement, students must complete all first year requirements (excluding humanities and gym), and be in good academic standing (ie, not on academic probation).  

Students must be enrolled in MA 123 and MA 124 in the Spring semester in order to interview for a Summer position.

If a student is unable to begin the Spring semester with MA 123, then he/she can complete or transfer in MA 124 in Summer Session 1.  Once a passing grade or transfer credit is posted for MA 124 at the conclusion of Summer Session 1, the student may then enter the interviewing and placement process for the Fall period. 

Taking Courses at Stevens While on Co-op

For students entering Stevens in Fall 2015 and later:

Students entering Fall 2015 or later may take a maximum of 2 evening courses per term, after 6:00pm, while out on Co-op.  There is no financial aid or scholarship available for courses taken while on Co-op.

For students who entered Stevens before Fall 2015:

Students who entered the University before Fall 2015 may take a maximum of 2 evening courses per term, after 6:00pm, while out on Co-op.

One (1) course, per Co-op term, will be covered by a Co-op grant valued at 3 tuition credits.  University fees must still be paid.

In order to receive the Co-op grant, please follow the following process:

  • Complete the Assignment Agreement with a Co-op staff member upon receiving an offer.
  • Follow the registration dates posted on the Registrar's website.
  • Register for the class via Web for Students.

Know Your Co-op Schedule

Upon joining the program, each student has an individual meeting with a co-op staff member to discuss his/her specific co-op schedule.  Other student programs like varsity athletics and scholars, and how this may impact a given co-op schedule, will also be discussed at this meeting.

Students participating in the Stevens scholars program may also participate in the Cooperative Education program.  In order to utilize the three scholars summers, a scholars student scheduled to be on a co-op assignment in a summer semester may elect to participate in either a co-op assignment OR take a scholars summer for that particular summer.  However, he/she must do their co-op designated summer of study where indicated on his/her co-op schedule (Semester 4 on Schedule A or Semester 5 on Schedule B), and it must be a tuition-bearing semester.  All students, regardless of whether they are scholars students or not, must pay for eight academic semesters.

See below for a sample co-op schedule grid (note that the below does not apply to all majors and may be affected by participation in certain varsity sports, participation in the Stevens Scholars program, etc):

ONEFALLSemester 1Semester 1
 SPRINGSemester 2Semester 2
 SUMMERCo-op 1 or OffCo-op 1 or Off
TWOFALLSemester 3Co-op 1
 SPRINGCo-op 2Semester 3
 SUMMERSemester 4Co-op 2
THREEFALLCo-op 3Semester 4
 SPRINGSemester 5Co-op 3
 SUMMERCo-op 4Semester 5
FOURFALLSemester 6Co-op 4
 SPRINGCo-op 5Semester 6
 SUMMERCo-op 5Co-op 5
FIVEFALLSemester 7Semester 7
 SPRINGSemester 8Semester 8