I’ve recently been offered a co-op position, and I’m really excited! However, the long term nature of a Summer/Fall Co-op is slightly intimidating, and I was wondering if anyone could speak on behalf of a co-op they enjoyed.
Hello Jillian, congratulations! I co-oped at General Electrical Appliances last spring and it was a great experience. I was far away from campus in Louisville, KY which was a little challenging. However, the incoming co-op class at GE was very large, so I had the opportunity to build a new network of friends.
I definitely recommend staying focused on your work and exploring different positions at your job. The evenings were where a lot of people struggled because most people were studying and you have a lot of free time. I recommend starting to build your interests by reading, exercising, learning a new skill, etc.
I really enjoyed my co-op and would definitely recommend it over an internship. Working for the extended period gives you enough time to really immerse in the company, culture, and people. Even though it pushed my graduation back a semester, I essentially got three internships worth of work and skills gained from it.
I had the opportunity to work in an automotive wheel manufacturing company where I was working in the Research & Development Laboratory studying the testing process of materials used to produce wheels and various failure testing methods. I also had the opportunity to perform a detailed study on the salt spray method for corrosion tests on wheels. The second one was at a Cutting Tools Manufacturing company where I worked for a shorter period and got to know the manufacturing process of various cutting tools like Twist drills, Broaches, Taps, Reamers, Cutters, and prepared a Value stream Map for the process.