Chemistry at Illinois University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Department of Chemistry at the University of Illinois

Cooperative Education for Chemists

To: Students Considering the Study of Chemistry at the University of Illinois

As you consider your education in chemistry at the University of Illinois, we wanted to take the opportunity to inform you of our Cooperative Education Program for Chemists. The Department of Chemistry sponsors a thriving cooperative program. The word "cooperative" in this context means that three parties are participating and hold joint responsibility: The student, the University, and the employer. In this program industrial companies are cooperating with the Department to provide practical professional work assignments for our students. An integral part of the program is the experience of working full time for an industrial firm several different school terms. During the other school terms, of course, students attend the University full time to complete their academic degree requirements. The total program involves extending the completion of the baccalaureate degree by no more than one calendar year.

While on each work assignment, the student is officially registered as the University of Illinois as a student participating in an off-campus program. Participation in the cooperative education program is indicated on the transcript by official registration in special courses. Completion of a minimum of three work assignments is recognized by a certificate issued by the School of Chemical Sciences.

Through the work assignments, which become increasingly more challenging and professionally oriented, our students acquire invaluable industrial experience. This experience will be beneficial to the student who plans to seek industrial employment immediately following graduation and to the student who will pursue a graduate degree before seeking full time employment. The work assignments give students a chance to apply the knowledge which they are learning in the classroom in a practical situation. It also allows students to find out what actually goes on in industrial organization.

Another major factor that students find attractive about the cooperative education is the salary. Most cooperative students are paid a competitive salary during their work assignments, and are able to save enough to defray a portion of their school expenses. Additional benefits are offered by many companies, including relocation expense coverage, tuition expenses, and job offers upon graduation. Cooperative education is among our most substantial financial aid programs.

Interviews for cooperative education assignments are frequently held on campus in the spring semester. If you wish to discuss the program in more detail or express your interest in it, please see Patricia Simpson, Director, Career Counseling and Placement Services, School of Chemical Sciences, 105 Noyes Laboratory, in the late fall of your first year. She will give you an application to complete and will refer you to the proper faculty advisor with whom to plan your academic program.

For information on degree completion while on internship on a semester-by-semester basis, contact your SCS Academic Advisor:

School of Chemical Sciences Academic Advising Office
110 A, B & C Noyes Lab, MC-712
To schedule an appointment, please call 217-333-1051

Read about the difference between internships and co-op experiences.