Internships and co-ops can provide students with practical experience and can be crucial stepping stones for future career opportunities. Currently, the national average for intern and co-op students to be offered full-time employment after their experience is 63.9%. Internships and co-ops will continue to be the center of career development for students and key recruitment strategies for employers for years and years to come.
What is an Internship?
Internships are typically one-time work or service experiences related to a student’s major or career goal. Internships generally involve students working in a professional setting, under a supervisor/mentor. Internships can be paid or unpaid, and students may or may not receive academic credit for their internship.
Do I Need to Do an Internship?
At NDSU, internship requirements vary by major or program. Some programs require students to do an internship and others encourage students to find an internship. Some programs offer credit for internships, others do not. It’s important to understand your program’s requirements before securing an internship.
What is a Co-op?
Co-ops (or cooperative education) experiences provide students with multiple periods of work or longer work experiences of full-time, discipline-related employment. Co-op programs allow students to transition seamlessly from the workforce back to the classroom. Most co-ops are paid experiences and many involved some form of academic credit.
The “co-op” terminology and practice is more commonly found in industries related to STEM fields.
Do I need to do a Co-op?
At NDSU, co-op requirements vary by major or program. Many programs within the College of Engineering encourage students to participate in a co-op, but not all programs offer program-specific credit for those experiences. It’s important to understand your program’s requirements before securing a co-op.