What is cooperative education (co-ops)? Co-ops are paid positions that require students to alternate semesters between full-time work and full-time academic study for at least two semesters. Students are usually guaranteed full-time placement with the organization upon graduation.
How will my organization benefit from providing an internship/co-op? By introducing talented students to your organization you can gain professional support as interns/co-ops contribute to the accomplishments of your organization‚Äôs goals with their hard work, fresh ideas, and energy. Internships and co-ops can also serve as a recruitment tool by acting as a training ground for perspective, permanent employees.
How many hours do students usually work? During the academic semester interns are required to work a minimum of 120 hours. Typically, interns will work at least 10 hours per week during the fall and spring and full-time during the summer. Students’ work schedules will vary depending on the needs of your organization and the students’ class schedules.¬†
What is appropriate compensation? Hourly pay levels for paid internships and co-ops range from minimum wage to $20.00 per hour. Internships and co-ops requiring technical skills or specific computer expertise usually pay at the higher end of that range. Interns many also be paid through stipends. Organizations that are unable to pay students should consider reimbursement for such expenses as travel and parking.
Can students receive academic credit for their internships/co-ops/ or research placements? Most internships, co-ops, and research positions can be approved for academic credit. Academic credit is offered and authorized by UMBC faculty who base their approval on the quality and nature of the student’s work as well as the relevance of the student’s responsibilities to the student’s academic major.¬†
Employing organizations cannot offer academic credit as compensation for an internship or co-op. However the employer may encourage a student to pursue academic credit and may offer to subsidize the costs of these credits as a form of compensation.
Can students earn money and academic credit at the same time? Absolutely. Students are allowed to receive both monetary compensation and academic credit, in the same semester, for their internships or co-ops.
Are there any employer standards our organization should be aware of when hiring prospective students? The employer’s ability to provide a quality work experience to a student intern or co-op is essential to the success of the relationship between The Shriver Center, your organization, and the student. Please review our Employer Agreement to understand the standards that we would like you to meet when offering a practical learning experience.
Where should I interview prospective interns or co-ops? Typically an organization will schedule interviews at its facilities. This practice further familiarizes students with your organization as they gain further insight into such relevant details as length of commutes and parking and traffic conditions.
However, on-campus interviews are welcome and can be easily arranged through The Shriver Center by calling Ms. Shirley Carrington at 410-455-2493.
Who can I contact for additional information regarding my internship/co-op/research posting? Please call our office at 410-455-2493 to identify the appropriate staff member who can best assist you based on the type of student you are seeking.