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Co-op Experience

Cooperative Education (co-op) is a unique feature of the RIT experience that gives students meaningful work experience during their time at RIT. Co-op is significant, full-time, paid work experience directly related to student's field of study and career interests.

The co-op experience is a reason why many students choose RIT. Parents and students can learn more about co-ops directly on the Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education website, but here are some common questions and concerns of parents and students:

Requirements

Co-op requirements vary by college and department. Co-ops can be required or optional, and the amount of required time spent on co-op differs by department. View the list of co-op requirements by college to see what is expected of your student based on his or her field of study.

Finding a Co-op

The Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education offers support and prepares students through one-on-one coaching, classroom instruction, and workshops. High-quality co-op job postings are generated as a result of job development efforts and established employer partnerships. Students search, apply, and go through the same hiring process as a regular job-they are not placed  into a job and there are no guarantees. 

Tuition and Financial Aid

RIT does not charge tuition for co-op, which means most forms of financial aid are not awarded during co-op employment. Students should contact their Financial Aid Counselor (ritaid@rit.edu) with specific questions regarding financial aid during co-ops.

Housing While on Co-op

Students who co-op in Rochester may stay in RIT housing. Students who co-op out of town are typically responsible for finding their own housing near the employer’s location. Some companies provide housing assistance in the form of subsidies or housing allowances, or space in locations they own or rent for this purpose. Most employers will at least provide a list of apartments or housing options to assist students.

Students who return from co-op are guaranteed on-campus housing, ifthey were in RIT housing priorto leaving for co-op, however, preferences are not guaranteed. RIT Housing Operations communicates with students via email and provides information on how to apply for housing when you return to campus.