5.7 Cooperative Education Program
Cooperative Education is a process of learning, which formally integrates the student's academic study with work experience in employer organizations. Work-related experience is found in industry, government and the farming profession. The work terms provide the students with practical experience, help to finance their education and provide guidance for further career specialization. All regulations governing regular Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences degree programs apply to the Cooperative Education Program. In addition, the following variations apply:
Admission: To be considered for admission in the Cooperative Education Program, an undergraduate degree student must have a minimum GPA of 2.5, have completed at least 75 credit hours of study by the end of the academic year of application but still need to complete 21 credit hours in their last year of academic study.
Students are advised that satisfying the entrance requirements does not guarantee a place in the Cooperative Education Program. Acceptance into the program is dependant upon the student receiving a job placement through the Cooperative Education Office.
Employment Term Requirements: The Cooperative Education Program is a five year program in which 12 months are spent in three-four month work terms with a faculty approved employer. The student will receive three credits for completing the Cooperative Education Program (one credit for each completed term). Students are required to register in the appropriate employment term course and pay the fee prior to starting the employment term. Normally each employment term will be completed with a different employer. While on a work term, a cooperative education student is not permitted to take more that six hours of academic credit and may not take more than one course at a time.
Academic Term Requirements: Once having been accepted into the Cooperative Education Program there are three requirements for each work term completed. Failure to do any of them in a timely fashion will result in a failing grade.
- Part way through the work term, the Cooperative Education Coordinator will contact the student for a work site evaluation. During the evaluation both the student and employer will be interviewed and the work assessed. The student will need to make him/herself available for the interview.
- Two weeks after the end of the work term, a work term report is due and must be submitted to the Cooperative Education Coordinator. Both content and format will be marked. (Details as to format and what is required in the report can be found in "Guidelines for Cooperative Education Work Term Report" which can be obtained from the Cooperative Education Coordinator.)
- Also, two weeks after the end of the work term, a post employment review is required to be submitted to the Cooperative Education Coordinator.
The appropriate department head, in consultation with the student's program chair, will assign each participating student a faculty advisor. The faculty advisor will be responsible for evaluating the student's work term report and assigning the student a grade based on the report, the employer's evaluation and Cooperative Education Coordinator's site evaluation. Grades of "Pass" or "Fail" will be assigned for each work term. Degree students successfully completing three work terms will have their "Cooperative Education Option" acknowledged on their graduation parchment.