Elya (the_fuzzy_rabbi) wrote in chemecommunity,
Elya
the_fuzzy_rabbi
chemecommunity

Co-ops

I need to start looking for a co-op once more, so I was wondering what experienced people have had.  This ranges from looking for co-ops, interviews, and actually being on co-op.  In my school it's common (or at least somewhat encouraged) for Cheme's to leave for a year, rather than a semester because all the courses are only offered once a year (and are prereques for one another).  Is it (was it?) like that in in your case(s)?

Additionally, if any of you college grads are working someone and can mention a co-op opportunity for a Junior-year cheme, it would certainly be appreciated.  Location isn't really an issue, and I can't imagine someone recommending where they're working if they're miserable there.
Thanks.

Also, I think three entries back in my own journal I wrote something (I hope) many of you will find rather amusing.  I suppose some people *might* be uncomfortable reading it... maybe... but I wouldn't go so far as to say it's not safe for work any more than a dirty joke might be.  Here's a link.  It's a public entry, and I submitted the assignment for the professor, so really, how bad could it be?
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At MTU you can take a semester off or a year, generally.

I recommend going on as many co-ops as you can since it is not uncommon for companies just to hire past co-ops for starting positions after graduation.

Some companies that I like when I was on co-op and have a lot of positions open are Hercules and Kimberly-Clark
Hello. I went on an internship (almsot a co-op, but not official) and it was invaluable to me getting some experience. I was there for six months.

All of that out of the way ... I don't think that a year or a half of a year makes a huge amount of difference. I went on my internship at the end of my masters, so don't quote me on this, but I'd say that it might be a good idea to keep the co-op to six months. When you get out in the real world, you sometimes tend not to do things that you'd necessarily clasify as (schoolish things. Though it's a good thing to go on Co-ops, it's also a good thing to keep up with the theoretical aspects of ChemE. Staying out for a year could put you behind a bit if it's a co-op where you're not doing anything of real consequence (refilling the coffee pot, filing etc.). If you're doing things within a plant, a year might help, but I would still say that six months, then school, then another six months (if you're talking about doing a year co-op) would be better because you can apply what you've learned in your classes to the latter part of your co-op.

I don't know if this helps at all, but it's my impressions from what I've seen my friends do as I've progressed my many years in college (I graduated high school in 1998? whoa). Later.
I'm currently on a co-op right now. I think you might have a hard time finding a company ready to hire a co-op for a year term. Depending on how your class offerings work, you can do two 6 month sessions nonconsecutive.

As far as companies go, here's a list of CHE co-op companies and agencies that I know people at:

Bristol Myers Squibb (myself)
NASA
Kimberly Clark
Air Products
Anheuser (beer is always a plus)
Dow
Dupont
Tate & Lyle

Basically, there's a wide variety out there so use your school's career center to go through as many offerings as possible.
Well, what are your interests? That makes it significantly easier to make recommendations as to where to go.

I personally work for Abbott Cell Culture, and my group is often looking for people, however we very much like someone who has some experience in the field, or at least has shown interest, by taking classes or whatnot.

We also would love someone for a year, but that would probably be in the form of a 6 month position, and then go from there.
most people at my school did a year as a summer and the fall semester, then the spring semester and a summer. It seemed to serve them well as it gave them more exposure to different parts of industry.