This program is the traditional, engineering academic option for undergraduates and serves all nine undergraduate majors in the UK College of Engineering: Biosystems, Chemical, Materials, Civil, Electrical, Computer, Mechanical, Mining Engineering and Computer Science. Our students work full time for a minimum of three semesters, which alternate with full time academic work.
Our mission is to provide students with at least 12 months of work experience while they continue to make progress towards an academic degree in engineering. The co-op program integrates theory learned in the classroom with its practical application in industry.
We also strive to provide industry with the students needed to maintain a skilled and well educated workforce for future years. Our employers get a chance to mentor a student, introduce him or her to their business, and possibly hire him or her after graduation.
Through co-operative education, we help students obtain transferable skills, such as communication, leadership, presentation, teamwork and social skills. Students get a glimpse of “real life” as an engineer.”
Our assessment tools provide the college with necessary tools and data for accreditation.
Participation and Outcomes
About a quarter of UK ‘s graduating engineering and computer science class elected to participate in co-op before graduation. Many employers in and outside of Kentucky participate in this program and routinely recruit co-op students from UK. About thirty percent of our co-ops work outside of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
The company size is not important; the work assignments must, however, complement academic programs. Most Co-op employers request students to work for a total of three, full-time semesters (about four months each) alternating with semesters of study on campus. Many of UK’s co-op graduates receive job offers before receiving their diplomas. Their starting salaries are consistently in the 75th percentile of starting salaries being reported nationwide by the National Association of Colleges and Employers.
Fifteen percent of UK co-op graduates go on to pursue advanced degrees – at schools such as UK, Purdue, GA Tech, MIT, Duke, Virginia Tech, Johns Hopkins, University of Florida, UC Santa Barbara, Cal Tech, Carnegie Mellon, and UC Berkeley.
If you are an employer please see For Employers
If you are a UK student please see For Students
Lou Takacs Co-op of the Year Winner Honored at Tau Beta Pi Banquet
Congratulations to Electrical Engineering student Joshua Morgan – recipient of the Co-operative Education Office’s Lou Takacs Co-op of the Year Award. This award is named for former DuPont executive and co-op office engineer in residence, Lou Takacs, whose family has endowed the annual award.
Joshua has co-oped 3 tours at Ethicon, part of the Johnson&Johnson family of companies, in Cincinnati, and one term with Whitehall Industries in Paducah, KY. Joshua will receive his Bachelor degree in May 2016, and his Master’s in December of 2016.
Joshua received the official recognition at the annual Tau Beta Pi Awards Banquet on April 19, 2016. In his statement for the award, Joshua wrote:
“During my two co-op terms at Ethicon, I was able to work on a variety of projects. The company’s co-op program allowed me to have a great deal of responsibility in my projects, and I was given the latitude to make significant contributions to my project teams. The results of my work directly affected final production design decisions, eliminated manufacturing and programming errors before production, and helped facilitate the development of new medical technologies. I learned a great deal through these terms both technically (product design, design for manufacture, and product reliability testing), and non-technically (teamwork, inter-team collaboration, and communication with external partners and manufacturers).
In addition to the projects I worked on during my co-op terms, I was able to see the effects that Ethicon’s products have for patients. It was amazing to see how the advances our team made and the contributions I made directly affected the quality of surgery and recovery process of patients. Some of the technologies I helped develop during my terms may completely transform medical treatment for millions of people. This fulfilling experience solidified my desire to work in medical technologies during my career.”