COVID-19 and Co-op
Wentworth expects organizations to provide a safe environment for students on in-person co-ops during the COVID-19 pandemic. This means adapting to a virtual co-op when and where appropriate, providing proper safety equipment (PPE, Face Masks, Face Shieds) and adhering to recommended guidelines and standards, including allowing for worker flexibility and maintaining social distancing and limiting in-person interaction. Wentworth prioritizes the health and safety of our community, and that includes students on co-op. Please read more on how to create a safe environment.
If your co-op is virtual, read about how to make a remote co-op work for both you and the student.
Recruiting a Wentworth Student for Co-op
During the pursuit of their undergraduate degree at Wentworth, all full-time undergraduate day students are required to complete at least two co-ops in order to graduate. Co-ops are offered three times per year:
- Spring: January – April
- Summer: May – August
- Fall: September – December
Important upcoming Co-op dates
|Co-op Schedule||Spring 2021||Summer 2021||Fall 2021|
|Semester begins (first official start date of co-op)||Monday, January 11||TBD||TBD|
|Last day to make an offer||Tuesday, January 19||TBD||TBD|
|Latest Employment start date||Wednesday, January 27||TBD||TBD|
|Co-op assessment due – student & employer||Friday, April 16||TBD||TBD|
|Last day of official co-op semester||Tuesday, April 27||TBD||TBD|
|Last day to live in on-campus housing||Friday, April 30||TBD||TBD|
In each co-op, students are required to work for the duration of the semester at a minimum of 30 hours per week. Co-ops are paid (there are exceptions for non-profit organizations) using standards set forth by the U.S. Department of Labor. The recruiting period for each cycle typically takes place during the four months prior to the start of co-op.
Post your job description to the Wentworth community quickly and easily through our online recruitment tool, WITworks.
Co-op Recruiting Policies
Wentworth enforces the following policies for recruiting our students for co-ops. We are happy to work with you on complying with these policies. In addition, employers must adhere to federal and state employment laws.
- Job description. Each co-op posting requires a job description. Since co-ops must be related to a student’s major, the job description is critical in assessing its relevance and academic rigor.
- Mentoring and supervision. Wentworth requires that co-op supervisors be content matter experts. For example, engineering students need to be supervised by engineers; computer science students must be supervised by computer experts.
- Performance Management. It’s important to manage the student’s job performance and provide timely and helpful feedback. About three weeks after your student’s start date, identify and discuss successes and opportunities for improvement. Near the end of your student’s assignment, we will ask you to complete an online assessment for your student. This form is a critical component of the student’s grade and must be completed within the time frame requested.
- Problem resolution. On occasion, students may not meet an employer’s expectations. We are happy to discuss substandard performance if necessary. We can coach students to help them successfully complete their co-op. Any student who is unsuccessful receives a failing grade and must repeat the experience in order to graduate.
- Notification of layoff or discharge. Since students are enrolled as a full-time student at Wentworth during their co-op, it is critical to know of any changes to their employment status. While the students themselves typically notify us of a layoff or discharge, we ask that the employer also notify us of this change.
- Compensation. To determine whether interns/co-ops must be paid the minimum wage and overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act, please refer to Fact Sheet #71: Internship Programs Under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Based on the government’s definition of an independent contractor, it is unlikely that a co-op student could be classified as such. To help make this determination, refer to the U.S. Department of Labor’s informative report on determining independent contractor status. For your reference, we have compiled this guide of average co-op salaries from the 2018-2019 year and the median starting salaries for the class of 2018.
Recruiting a Wentworth Graduate
Prime recruiting season for graduating Wentworth students is NOW. To accommodate our co-op program, many of our students graduate in August, while others finish their degrees in December and April. We invite you to recruit on campus or by posting jobs to both graduating students and Wentworth alumni through our online recruitment tool, WITworks.
How The Center for Cooperative Education + Career Development Can Assist
Virtual On-campus recruiting. We can help you schedule a virtual on-campus interview day. Efficient and effective, interview days simplify the process of scheduling numerous interviews. In addition, they are promoted extensively on campus, raising awareness of your company and job opportunities.
Recruiting Wentworth alumni. Wentworth maintains close ties to our alumni, including helping them find rewarding job opportunities throughout their career. Contact us to discuss the best ways for your organization to reach and recruit our exceptional and experienced alumni.
Virtual employer information sessions. Coming to campus for an employer information session can be a very effective way to promote your company and your job opportunities. To participate, your organization must have active positions posted in WITworks and have an upcoming on-campus interview day scheduled.
Virtual CO-OP + CAREER Fair. Wentworth is hoping a free virtual Fair spanning three days in mid-October, depending on the majors you are targeting. Learn more and register.
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