Overview of co-ops and internships
Differences between a co-op and an internship
Reasons to pursue a co-op/internship
Finding a co-op/internship
Co-op Search Strategies Workshops
NKU’s Co-op and Internship Services
Co-op Enrollment Deadline
How to register for co-op credit
Co-op Handbook (required reading), Forms, and Additional Information
Co-ops and internships are opportunities that combine learning with work and offer a unique experience for career exploration. The essential component is that as you are working, you have structure and intentional objectives to learn about a career field. These positions may be full- or part-time and short- or long-term. Some employers have formal internship programs while others only offer internships/co-ops on an informal basis. If you are already working in your field of study, you may be able to turn your current position into a co-op or internship. Undergraduate and graduate students may pursue co-ops and internships.
- A co-op is a paid work experience, related to the student’s major (or minor), with academic credit earned. The student enters into an agreement among the employer, a specific faculty member in the academic department, and Career Services staff.
- An internship is a curricular work experience for academic credit which may or may not be paid. Internships are offered in a few academic departments.
- Explore potential careers
- Learn how to conduct a job search
- Build work-related skills
- Experience a “3-month interview” because you and the employer will be evaluating each other for good fit, skills and opportunities, etc.
- Network with people in your field
- Become more marketable for your future job search
- Earn 300-level academic credit which counts toward your total required hours for graduation
Before you begin your co-op search, you should reflect on:
- Your interests, strengths, skills, and experiences
- The skills you hope to gain or refine through a co-op
- The types of careers that interest you
If you need career advice, such as deciding on a major, Career Services also offers assessments and individual advising appointments to help determine how your particular interests and skills might match skills needed for various careers.
Once you are comfortable with your major and want to begin pursuing your career goals, schedule an appointment with a Career Advisor for assistance with your co-op/internship search.
To find out more about our co-op and internship services and the methods of locating an internship, please attend one of the Co-op Search Strategies workshops and seek assistance from a Career Advisor. It is imperative that you also read the Co-op Handbok (link below).
- Spring 2014 dates: coming soon!
- Norse Recruiting, an online system that includes co-op/internship postings; details on workshops, career fairs, and other events; and an employer directory. Employers can also use this site to search for qualified students.
- On-campus interviews for some internship/co-op opportunities – schedule these through Norse Recruiting.
- Walk-in Hours for a quick, 15-minute resume/cover letter review with a Career Advisor without an appointment.
- Individual appointments with a Career Advisor to discuss co-ops and provide help in tailoring your own co-op search plan.
- Internship and co-op employment resources in the Career Library, located in Career Services.
- Workshops on job search-related topics such as Interviewing Techniques and Resumes & Cover Letters.
- Internet Resources with links to dozens of websites related to co-op searches
- Annual career fairs where you can explore possible co-ops and/or full-time employment. All students welcome!
The final deadline for earning 1 co-op credit is:
Fall 2013: Friday, November 8*
Spring 2014: Friday, April 4*
*IMPORTANT: Only hours worked between your enrollment and the end of the semester can be counted. So if you are working 25 hours/week and wish to earn 3 credits, your deadline is 12 weeks before the end of the semester (300 total hours needed ÷ 25 hours/week = 12 weeks.) You will want to allow 1-2 weeks to print and complete the paperwork, obtain the job description, secure the signatures of your employment supervisor and Faculty Coordinator, and then submit to Career Services. The final deadline for 1 credit in any term is 4 weeks before the last day of class. You'll find more details in the Co-op Handbook (required reading) below.
Students in most majors will take CEP 300 for co-op credit. Graduate students may also enroll for CEP 600. To find details on every step of the enrollment process, please click here for the Co-op Handbook - Step by Step Guide.
Co-op Spotlight: Emma Woeste
I have the privilege of being a co-op for The Kroger Company. I found out about this position through NKU Career Services. One of Kroger's HR personnel was on campus for mock interviews and Career Services notified me. I met with her, and soon after I landed an interview! That interview brought me to where I am today.
I now work in the Corporate Brands Sourcing and Planning Department with a focus on GNX bids. (That stands for Global Network eXchange.) I help coordinate an online bid process where suppliers try to bid the lowest cost to produce our products for us. From pulling data, supplier research, spreadsheets, bid recaps, and much more I do my best to help my team save Kroger money.
I also am on the Kroger United Way committee that raises money for local charities. Working with Kroger has been a life altering experience and I have learned so much more than a classroom can give me. I always leave work with a better understanding of the corporate world and I am eager to see what the next day will have in store for me.