The goal of both faculty and the Office of Career Services & Cooperative Education staff is student career success. By working together, we can ensure a seamless transition from RIT student to an influential member of the work force. Our department supplements and supports your efforts and offers services and resources to students and alumni in direct support of their employment and career development goals.
Key Information for Faculty
- Co-op Evaluation and Co-op Work Report Database
- Office of Career Services and Co-op Dashboard
- Key Office Services
- How You Can Help Us
- Cooperative Education
- Ethical and Legal Standards in Hiring
- Tips for Writing Letters of Recommendation
If you are in a position to monitor and/or grade a student after they complete their co-op, then you are eligible to access our Co-op Evaluation and Student Co-op Work Report System. Just complete the online form below and submit your request. We will set up an account for you so you can use the it in the future.
Access Co-op Evaluation and Student Co-op Work Report System for:
Co-op Status - View list of students who have registered and/or reported their co-op.
Co-op Evaluations - View evaluations employers have submitted after a student has completed a co-op.
Co-op Work Reports - View reports that student have submitted about their co-op experience(s).
[New users request account by email]
Some key staff and faculty also have requested access to our Dashboard to verify whether a student has reported their co-op and/or is registered in SIS.
Handshake is the system we use to meet the needs of our employers to connect with student and alumni candidates. It is where jobs are posted (co-op, full-time, internships), on campus interview opportunities, career fair details are accessed and more. RIT students and alumni have full access to this system.
Handshake -- Student/Alumni Highlights:
- Easily find the best jobs and co-ops/internships
- Simple but powerful search tools and alerts help you find the best fit from more than 500,000 jobs and internships posted by 120,000 companies, non-profits and government organizations.
- Show off your best self to employers
- Quickly build out a rich profile that helps you stand out when employers search for students. Use our tips and examples to make it easy.
- The most personalized experience
- Handshake continually personalizes our career recommendations based on your interests and connections, helping you discover exciting new opportunities.
- Handshake helps over 120,000 top employers easily find, recruit and hire the best college talent across the country.
- Engineers, Accountants, Artists, Developers, Marketers, Agronomists, Chemists. They’re all on Handshake.
- We help your students find the right fit—We help student access information related to their career path and develop essential job-search skills. We are a student's best resource for job outlook, company profiles, salary, and employment trend information.
- We know employers who want to know you—At the Office of Career Services & Cooperative Education, we work directly with employers, who often ask for the contact information of faculty members who could help them to target students in a particular major or discipline. Ideally, employers would like to develop mutually beneficial relationships with faculty, and can provide many forms of support. We can facilitate that connection. We also have resources to help faculty understand their ethical responsibilities toward students.
Because of the influence you have with both students seeking jobs and employers seeking new talent, NACE has created this Guide to Ethical Hiring and Legal Standards to assist you.The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), the leading source of information on the employment of the college educated and an organization to which a great number of academic and hiring organizations belong, provides a set of ethical standards for guiding the job-search process.
- We develop job opportunities—Our staff works with employers to develop relationships that result in hiring our co-op, graduating students and alumni. These job opportunities are available to students and alumni online through a password-protected searchable database called Handshake. Faculty can request an account and see those opportunities.
- On campus recruiting--is an option we offer prospective employers to recruit candidates. We have dedicated interview rooms for this purpose.
- Our career fairs attract many recruiters to one event—Our career fairs provide excellent opportunities for your students to meet representatives from the companies in their industries of choice and establish a network of contacts. We will help your students research the employers beforehand and provide tips so they are prepared to effectively engage recruiters. We host two major career fairs – a fall and a spring fair open to all students and alumni, as well as a number of specialized fairs and a portfolio review event throughout the year. Employers use our fairs to speak with candidates for co-op and full-time opportunities and connect with faculty.
- We connect with students and alumni—Each academic major is assigned a career services coordinator to work with them achieve their career goals. Consequently, you have a specific point of contact in our office for any questions or concerns regarding students in your academic department.
- We help students master the job interview—There is no better way to prepare for the job interview than by experiencing an "actual" interview. At the Office of Career Services & Cooperative Education, our staff or recruiter volunteers will conduct mock (or practice) interviews with your students, and then provide a constructive critique of their performance and suggest effective interview strategies.
- We'll bring the information to your class—We specialize in conducting presentations to the classes you teach and the student organizations you advise about a host of career-related topics, such as resume writing, job-search strategies, and interviewing skills. In addition, we often arrange presentations by professionals (many of them alumni), who can relate their experiences and how their education has helped them in their careers. We also can help out in a pinch: If you need to, or are considering canceling a class, just contact us and we can schedule a presentation instead.
- We assist in identifying quality cooperative education and internship opportunities—Experiential education is such an important part of your students' overall educational experience. Just ask any employer. Through our network of employers, we can help your students identify cooperative education and internship opportunities that will best serve them in their academic and professional pursuits.
- We communicate with students—Through targeted e-mails, newsletters and social media. We also meet with individual students on an appointment basis. Students can simply call our office to set this up, same day appointments are an option. Every day we offer Walk In Hours in our office and in many academic buildings where students can stop by with a quick question.
- We are focused internationally—We are working on establishing contacts to assist students in obtaining meaningful work experiences overseas—many that may be used for co-op credit. For example, we are partnering with CDS to help students find employment in Germany. Students have the opportunity meet with our experts for one-on-one to discuss their plans and get advice. If you have any questions about our International Experience program or can provide any leads for overseas employment, please contact us.
- We offer career counseling—Our career counselors are here to support student and alumni academic and professional success. Regardless of field of study or major, they can provide students/alumni with information on what it takes to succeed in their chosen career. Whether students are seeking to change your major, or to pick a minor or concentration, they are available to assist. For more information visit the student/alumni career counseling pages of our site.
- We provide graduate school advisement—We serve as the central location for graduate school information on campus, we offer graduate school info sessions throughout the year and have an advisor responsible for meeting with students who need information about and guidance through the grad school process. Information is accessible through the Graduate School Information page of our site.
- We work closely with other RIT units—Our office has very close and positive working relationships with other key RIT units including the Development Office, Sponsored Research Services, Alumni Relations, the Counseling Center, International Student Services, Housing, Honors and Study Abroad. We also interact closely with our career services colleagues at NTID's National Center on Employment in supporting the needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing students.
- We collect data—Salary data (along with names of employing organizations) is gathered from co-op and graduating students. We make this grouped data available through our web site to prospective students, current students and alumni. Employers also have access and often consider this data before extending job offers to co-op and graduating students.
- Access to co-op evaluation and co-op work report database—As a valued faculty partner you can request an account to access a portion of our site developed with you in mind. It includes co-op evaluations, co-op work reports (if applicable).
It is important for all faculty and staff at RIT to support the institute’s goal of career education for a lifetime. You can do so by helping us with the following:
- Direct students (and alumni) with questions about co-op or job search services to our office.
- Forward to us job leads so that we can give students or alumni equal access to job openings. We can also establish long-term relationships with employers and communicate regularly with them. Here is a link to information for employers.
- Help us publicize programming and services.
- Review marketing materials to ensure accurate information about academic programs and student competencies.
- Invite us to participate in appropriate department and college programs, meetings, and events where our perspectives and experiences can be helpful to and supportive of your efforts.
- Help us gather data on the most recent graduating class on behalf of the university.
RIT is a World Leader in Cooperative Education
For nearly 100 years, the hallmark of an RIT education has been the practical, paid work experience provided through cooperative education. RIT was among the first universities to begin cooperative education back in 1912, and today our co-op program is the fourth oldest and one of the largest in the world.
More than 4,300 students complete more than 5,700 co-op assignments last year and are employed by more than 2,200 employers coast-to-coast and overseas. Co-op is one of the most effective means for employers to identify and acquire key talent – few institutions have done it as well and as long as RIT. RIT’s extensive experience and resources allow us to successfully meet the needs of nearly all types of employing organizations.
At RIT, tuition is not charged for the terms students are employed as a co-op student. Employers pay a full-time salary. We gather co-op salary data, by program, and make it available to employers to assist them in setting a competitive pay range. Last year, RIT co-op students earned more than $45 million. Many students find that their co-op earnings can go a long way toward helping them finance their RIT education.
A number of academic programs offer experiential education opportunities such as internships. We often join forces with faculty to help students identify supervised practical training experiences appropriate for academic credit.
Employers seeking talented students for project work may ask for assistance in communicating freelance opportunities to students.
Other Types of Opportunities
Additionally we support the university’s growing interest in developing undergraduate research experiences for students as well as identifying senior seminar and other class-based project ideas and sponsors. The RIT Student Employment Office is also part of our department so there are several opportunities for students to pursue part-time on- and off-campus employment to assist in broadening their skills and experiences.
The success of students in obtaining employment is important to a number of parties on the college campus. In addition to the students themselves, these parties include the professionals who work in the Office of Career Services & Cooperative Education and in admissions, development, and alumni relations offices, and you, the faculty.
Often you play a direct role in the employment process for new graduates. Usually, your role and that of the Office of Career Services & Cooperative Education program coordinator are complementary. Occasionally, however, helping students in their job searches can result in unanticipated illegal or unethical actions.
The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), to which a great number of academic and hiring institutions belong, provides a set of ethical standards called the NACE Principles for Ethical Professional Practice. These standards are based on notions of fairness, truthfulness, non-injury, confidentiality, and lawfulness. In its foreword, the Principles document notes that colleges and employers share the common goal of "achieving the best match between the individual student and the employing organization."
Three basic precepts serve as the foundation of this goal, namely:
- Maintaining an open and free selection of employment opportunities in an atmosphere conducive to objective thought, where job candidates can choose optimum long-term uses of their talents that are consistent with personal objectives and all relevant facts;
- Maintaining a recruiting process that is fair and equitable to candidates and employing organizations;
- Supporting informed and responsible decision making by candidates.
Because of the role you play in the hiring process, and the influence you have with both students seeking jobs and employers seeking new talent, NACE (National Association or Colleges and Employers) has created guidelines to assist you.
- Prior to providing a reference, obtain consent from the person about whom the reference will be given. If you are unaware that the job applicant has named you as a reference, ask the prospective employer for verification that the individual has given consent for the reference. Such verification could include a copy of the student's signed application listing you as a reference, your name listed as a reference on the student's resume, or verbal confirmation by the student to you.
- Discuss the type of reference that you will provide with the person who asks you to be a reference. If you cannot provide a good reference, be honest with the individual. Don't promise a "glowing reference" and then provide merely a "glimmer."
- Follow your organization's policy regarding providing a reference. If references are handled in a centralized fashion, advise the prospective employer that even though you may be named as a reference, your organization's policy prohibits you from providing the reference. Direct the employer to the appropriate person in the organization.
- If "to whom it may concern" reference letters are requested, document that this is the type of reference requested and that the student or job applicant takes responsibility for disseminating the letters to the proper persons.
- Respond to the specific inquiry about the student or job applicant. Direct the response to the particular person who requested the information.
- Relate references to the specific position for which the person applied and to the work that the applicant will perform.
- Informal lunch discussions or "off the record" telephone conversations with prospective employers regarding a person's performance should be avoided. There is no such thing as "off the record."
- Information given should be factual, based upon personal knowledge/ observation of the person through direct contact with the person or obtained from the person's personnel record or student record.
- Avoid giving personal opinions or feelings. If you make subjective statements or give opinions because they are requested, clearly identify them as opinions and not as fact. If you give an opinion explain the incident or circumstances on which you base the opinion.
- Don't guess or speculate-if someone asks you questions regarding personal characteristics about which you have no knowledge, state that you have no knowledge.
- State in a reference letter, "This information is confidential, should be treated as such, and is provided at the request of (name of student or applicant), who has asked me to serve as a reference." Statements such as these give justification for the communication and leave no doubt that the information was not given to hurt a person's reputation.
- Do not include information that might indicate an individual's race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, citizenship status, sex (unless by the individual's name it is obvious), or marital status. Do not base an opinion of performance on stereotypes about an individuals, for instance "for a woman, she excels in math."
- Document all information you release.