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Graduate Cooperative Education Program

The graduate co-op experience is intended to be an integral part of a graduate student's academic program, providing on-the-job experience that satisfies academic requirements such as a practicum, or allowing students to apply knowledge they have acquired through course work or research as they progress to degree completion. All graduate students may be authorized for co-op if they meet eligibility requirements. 


International Students in F-1 status must be authorized for internship/co-op under Curricular Practical Training (CPT) by a DSO in the Cranwell International Center, after the co-op request has been approved by the Graduate School.  

  • Complete at least one semester of academic work in your program of study
  • Add co-op course to plan of study (GRAD 5944 or GRAD 7944 or required practicum course) – recommended for all students; required for international students
  • Be in good academic standing with a GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Additional requirements exist for international students based on immigration regulations
  • Co-op experience should be related to field of study
  • Employment should be full-time, largely overlapping with academic semester, if not in the summer
  • Must be documented by employment offer letter or contract and approved by academic advisor on co-op form
  • Additional requirements exist for international students based on immigration regulations
  • Co-op employment may not overlap with an assistantship appointment
  • Additional restrictions apply to international students based on immigration regulations
  • Provide an employment/co-op offer letter or standard co-op contract form with the following information:
    • The student’s full name
    • The full name of the company
    • The title of the student position
    • The student’s supervisor
    • The supervisor’s contact information
    • Confirmation that the internship/co-op is fulltime
    • Whether the position is paid or unpaid
    • The beginning and end dates of the co-op experience
    • A job description
  • Provide the student with a challenging work experience in an area related to the student’s academic field of study. 
  • Evaluate the student at the end of each semester or summer term 
  • Secure co-op employment offer in writing; offer must meet all of the above criteria.
  • Complete the Academic Advisor’s Recommendation Form and secure the signature of your academic advisor
  • Submit advisor recommendation and job offer letter to Graduate Student Services
    • GSS will sign off on the Advisor Recommendation Form, and will enroll US citizen/permanent resident students in the appropriate co-op course
    • International students will have to take the approved Advisor Recommendation Form to the Cranwell International Center and apply for CPT; the co-op course will be added to their schedule by the Graduate School after the CPT (immigration work authorization for the co-op experience) is approved

At the end of the co-op experience, the employer should complete the co-op evaluation form.