Program Structure and Requirements

  • The student must work under the supervision of a qualified engineer who can provide effective professional and technical guidance.

  • The student must work for two semesters. Ideally, these will be consecutive semesters (summer/fall or spring/summer).  If your program is structured to have alternating work semesters, you must ensure that the structure works for the student.

    • Students may work a third semester of co-op but they will not receive academic credit for the third semester.

    • Due to logistics of the major, the Biomedical Engineering (BME) major requires that students begin their co-op in the summer and take their second semester in the fall or spring semester. BME students cannot take an out-of-town position because they have an on-campus course that they need to take. Employers hiring BME students must allow the student to leave during the work day to attend this class.

  • The student must work full-time (40 hours per week).

  • Students must log their hours during the semesters in which they are enrolled in the academic courses (see below for semester dates).

  • The position must be related to the student's major.

  • Work assignments must be technical in nature.

  • The student must be paid a competitive wage. For more information about wages, see the hiring co-op students page.

Start and End Dates for the Work Semester

Below is a chart of approximate start and end dates for the working semester. The start and end dates are decided by the employer and student. The starting and ending work dates do not need to exactly match the University's semester dates but they should fall within the below ranges. Official start and end dates of each semester can be found on the University Calendar.

General Dates for the Working Semester

Working Semester Approximate Work Start Date Approximate Work End Date
Spring Semester Any time after New Year's Day (the official semester begins the 3rd week of January) By the end of May (the official semester ends mid-May)
Summer Semester Anytime after the official end of the spring semester in mid-May. Before Labor Day
Fall Semester Early September (the official semester begins the day after Labor Day) By the end of December or mid-January (the official semester ends mid-December)


Student's Work Responsibilities

Co-op students are expected to behave professionally.

  • During the work period, students must observe all the rules and regulations of the employer and not expect special treatment. For instance, University holidays do not apply, and students should not expect to be released for the University's Spring Break.
  • Any misunderstanding that a student might have with an employer should be discussed with Co-op Program staff.
  • Layoffs or enforced absence due to illness or other situations should be reported immediately to the Co-op Program.