Cooperative Education (Co-Op)
About Cooperative Education
Isn't it time you found out what a career in engineering is all about?
If you've ever wondered if there's more to engineering than lectures, homework, and projects, then experience the hands-on problem solving engineers face in the real world.
Cooperative Education (co–op) is a partnership between employer, student, and university. Students gain invaluable job experience and training while learning alongside actual engineers in the field.
So if your looking for on-the-job experience, projects that have an impact, and skills that will benefit the rest of your career, find out if a co-op is right for you.
How a Co-Op Works
Students applying for the co-op Program must have a minimum grade point average of 2.0, but preferably higher. Many companies require a GPA of 3.0 or better.
Co-op tours begin after students have completed their sophomore year and their initial engineering courses. Transfer students must complete at least one semester at Texas Tech before going on tour.
Students typically alternate semesters in industry (on tour) with semesters in the classroom to provide a balance of education and experience.
Learn first-hand from professionals in your field as you gain confidence in your engineering skills, grow in your understanding of professional ethics, and increase the level of your communication and teamwork skills.
- Try Out Your Career: Know that you're meant to be an engineer.
- Earn Money: Co-op students typically make $13 to $36 an hour.
- Get Experience: Many employers hire former co-op students.
Successful application to the co-op program requires the following steps.
- Attend the Whitacre College of Engineering Job Fair and search Job Grid to learn about co-op opportunities.
- Fill out a Co-Op Degree Plan and review it with your advisor.
- As soon as you accept a position, be sure to report it under the "Outcomes" tab in your Job Grid profile.
Financial Aid Some scholarships require you to earn 24 credit hours toward your degree in an academic year. Take this into consideration when making your degree plan. This is especially important for out-of-state students whose in-state tuition is dependent on scholarship status.
International Students: Be certain that you are complying with the regulations of Immigration and Naturalization Services with regard to Curricular Practical Training. Contact Michael Murphy at the Office of International Affairs to be certain you protect your rights.
Grad Students: All graduate students must meet with their faculty advisor and obtain a CPT Recommendation Letter. Click the link for a sample letter.
"This co-op tour has given me new motivation to get my degree and start producing something that will make an impact."
Product Development Co-Op
Advanced Micro Devices
"While I did learn about different aspects of process engineering...the greatest skill I acquired this term was the ability to help bring ideas from formulation to successful engineering solutions.
Manufacturing Rep. Co-Op
"Myths from school caused me to doubt my decision to become an engineer. This experience... reinstated my drive to graduate."
"...that is what is so great about this program. It allows you to get the desired experience that will help you professionally, but you also seem to stumble upon some hidden treasures along the way.
I hope that if there are any students who are still questioning the co-op program, they will seriously reconsider. It will be one of the best decisions you ever make in your life."
Traffic Engineering Co-Op
City of Fort Worth, Texas