I had always wanted to go on Co-op, even before I knew which university I wanted to attend. I think the real workforce experience and networking opportunities inherent in this program are invaluable to those who want to go into industry post-graduation. I have always found with other summer jobs that I really get to understand what's going on after a month or so, and then the summer is halfway over. My hope, pursuing a Co-op, is that I will get extra time to learn new things and really get to settle into my work to understand and improve upon the details of my professional life.
Co-op Participants Share Their Perspectives
The Co-op program offers a professional development community. We encourage you to talk with and reach out to current and former Co-op participants about their experiences.
Many of the ENG Co-op students pose for a picture at an end-of-summer dinner before heading out on their Co-ops.
I decided to do a Co-op to work for a longer period of time which allows me to work on more involved projects and gain more experience in the industry. Keep your goals in mind. The job search process can be very hectic and random, causing you to lose sight on what you ultimately hope to get out of college. Think about what you want to do when you graduate and as you apply to Co-op positions, ask yourself, does this help me get to where I want to be going?
I was attracted by the opportunity to apply my engineering knowledge from Cornell to a real job where I could help solve real-world challenges, fully understand and potentially lead my own projects from having an extended amount of experience, and develop deeper connections with people in my field, all before finishing my undergrad. I suggest being open minded in searching for opportunities that might not be advertised as Co-ops but could be turned into one, while staying true to areas of work that you genuinely care about.
I initially decided to do a Co-op because I thought it would give me a better look into an engineering career than a regular summer internship. By giving me more time in the work environment, as well as having the support of Cornell, I know I will leave my Co-op with engineering experience that I can use for the rest of my career."
I decided to do Co-op because I wanted a lengthier and more involved work term and a closer look at what the actual work force in my field of study is like. It is also nice that Cornell is very involved and helpful throughout the entire process.