Cleveland State University

Career Services Center

Cooperative Education

Cooperative Education for Employers

What are the benefits of co-op?
What are the requirements for participation?
What are the costs?

What types of work schedules are available?
Who else uses the Co-op program?
Frequently asked questions

In today's marketplace, recruiting, hiring and training the most well-qualified employees is critical to the success of your business. One of the most effective ways to make sure you're offering the right job to the right person is through a program called Cooperative Education.

Co-op lets you observe a potential employee's performance in an actual job situation. Through Co-op you're able to evaluate a student's real potential in terms of your company's needs before you offer them a full-time position.


  • Economically prescreen qualified job applicants in on-the-job setting
  • Hire productive, enthusiastic employees
  • Reduce the cost of recruiting college students
  • Make better use of valuable staff time by turning over routine tasks to Co-op employees
  • Add professional manpower during peak work times or for special projects
  • Reduce the cost of training potential full-time professional employees
  • Increase your company's visibility on our campus


Co-op students should be considered as professional employees who are providing a service to your company. As a Co-op employer, you should:

  • Provide a meaningful work experience
  • Provide training and supervision
  • Complete an employer co-op evaluation and exit interview


The exact salary and benefits you pay as a Co-op employer are determined by you and the student. Usually you should expect to pay between sixty and eighty percent of a full-time entry level salary when hiring a co-op student.

You pay the student directly. There is no contract and no fee. All that is required is a minimum of one semester of employment and meaningful work experience. If you would like to see some examples of hourly wages paid to co-op students--click here.


There are two main types of Co-op assignments available to Cleveland State students. The first is the traditional full-time alternating schedule. To see this schedule, click here. Generally, students enrolled in a technical program (Engineering, CIS, Technologies) are advised to follow this schedule. Students attend classes full time during the numbered semesters and work full time during the Co-op semesters.

The second type of Co-op assignment is a parallel schedule. Typically, a Co-op student will work and attend school at the same time on a split schedule basis. Students that follow this schedule will usually work 20 hours a week and take 2 to 3 courses during that same semester. Either schedule is arranged between the student and Co-op employer with final approval by the student's Career Coordinator and open to all majors.

Click here to view both Co-op schedules timetable.


You've probably heard of Lubrizol, B.P. America and the other Fortune 500 firms in the area. They are all co-op employers. But a number of small to medium-sized employers also realize the value of hiring co-op students.


Does my company pay a fee to use CSU's Co-op program?

No, there is no fee to hire a student from Cleveland State's Co-op program.

How long do I employ a Co-op student?

The length of employment is at least one semester (15 weeks). Beyond that, it is generally between the you and the student. Some students will work with a co-op employer for a couple of semesters or their entire college career.

How do I make contact with the students?

There are several ways to contact students. The first is to call (216) 687-2233 and talk to a career coordinator. If you so desire, the coordinator can either fax or email copiesof students' resumes to you. Or if you desire, we can post the notice and have the students send a cover letter and resume to you.

Where do I interview the students?

You can either contact the students directly and set up interviews on your site or call (216) 687-2233 to arrange for an interviewing room on campus.

Is there any paperwork to fill out?

The only paperwork we require is a co-op evaluation form to be completed by the student's immediate supervisor at the end of each semester of work. Remember that this is a learning experience for the student and it is important that there is feedback on his or her performance.

How much do the students earn?

Students typically make between $6.00 - $15.00 an hour, depending on the field. Click here for a small listing of salary ranges for Co-op students in different majors.

What if my company only has summer internships?

We can still help. The same procedures apply as the co-op program. Some students may only be looking for a one semester summer experience.

How do I contact the Co-op Program?

It's easy! Call, email or visit us at:

Career Services Center
2121 Euclid Avenue, RW 280
Cleveland, OH 44115
(216) 687-2233
engaged learning
Office Hours
Monday-Thursday 7:30am-6:00pm
Friday 7:30am-5:00pm
Campus Location
Rhodes West, Room 280
1860 East 22nd Street
Phone: 216.687.2233
Toll Free: 888.CSUOHIO
Satellite Office
College of Urban Affairs, UR 209
Monday: 8:00am-6:00pm
Tuesday: 8:00am-5:00pm
Thursday: 8:00am-5:00pm
Mailing Address
Cleveland State University 2121
Euclid Avenue, RW 280
Cleveland, OH 44115-2214

This site contains files that require the free Adobe Reader to view.