Fall 2022 Trine Course Catalog

Cooperative Education Program

The Cooperative Education Program (co-op) is a course that promotes professional learning and enhances traditional university course and lab work. The Cooperative Education Program is designed to allow students to alternate full-time work with an employer and campus sessions. This experience not only better prepares the student for entry into his/her chosen field, it allows students the opportunity to network with professionals and make industry contacts. Another advantage is that co-op students can earn a salary while on work assignments, enabling them to finance a portion of their education. Students eligible for the Cooperative Education Program must have completed a minimum of 30 semester hours with a 2.4 cumulative grade point average and must meet criteria established by the prospective employer.

A student is considered a cooperative education student after having accepted employment with a cooperative education employer, after the Cooperative Education Director and Department Chair have approved the student’s program, and after the student has registered for the course CO 050 Co-op Employment. Work experience prior to acceptance into the Cooperative Education Program cannot be applied to the program.

A cooperative education student must complete a minimum of three semesters of work assignments. Approval of any changes in the alternating employment/class schedule must be obtained in writing from the cooperative education company, the Cooperative Education Director, and the respective Department Chair. This approval should be obtained by mid-term of the semester before the proposed change. Consecutive work periods require separate registration.

A cooperative education student may have a second cooperative education employer only if a co-op position is terminated by the original employer or, in the extreme case, that no major-related experience or progression of responsibilities is occurring. Verification of major-related experience and progression must be made in writing by the cooperative education student and confirmed by both the Cooperative Education Director and the respective Department Chair.

During or upon completion of the final work assignment, the student must enroll in CO 45X Co-op Work Experience. Students have the flexibility to choose a one, two, or three hour course. Through this course, the student will prepare and submit a comprehensive report on his/her work experience. Upon approval of the finished report, the student will be awarded one (1), two (2), or three (3) hours of academic credit depending on the course completed. 

Upon satisfactory completion of both academic and co-op work experience requirements, the cooperative education student will be granted a baccalaureate degree with the inscription “Cooperative Education Program,” as well as a designation on his/her transcript noting cooperative education participation.