Working as a Co-op

How much will I make?

On average, students can earn $1,700 to $2,500 per month while on a co-op assignment. Each co-op employer sets the wage and pays the student. Just like salaries, co-op wages vary by field, industry, and level of experience. View average hourly co-op wages.

Where will I work?

UC students co-op at more than 1,200 organizations in 40 states and a handful of foreign countries. Engineering co-op jobs tend to be in the Cincinnati Tristate area, while design students tend to go further afield. We encourage students to pursue the best learning opportunity regardless of geographic location.

While the University doesn’t assist with relocation or housing, the co-op employer is often able to help, and faculty advisors can sometimes connect students with alumni or other students in the local area. DAAP students can also take advantage of this web site created by DAAP Tribunal.

What's the co-op fee?

While on co-op, students pay a co-op fee instead of tuition tied to credit hours. The co-op fee is substantially less than the cost of full tuition.

Paying the fee allows you to maintain your full-time student status, which is important for keeping your financial aid and student health insurance.

Do I have to comply with my employer's policies?

To the extent permitted by law, Students enrolled in experiential learning or co-op programs will be expected to comply with all rules, policies, guidelines, and requirements of any third-party placement, including but not limited to vaccination and background check requirements. Any student’s failure to comply with such third-party rules, policies, guidelines, or requirements may result in the student not being able to complete and graduate from their program.

When will my co-op work start and end?

Co-op is a full-time, year-round academic commitment. Students typically have the summer off following the first academic year, then they alternate co-op and academic semesters year-round with no break through graduation.

The co-op calendar mainly follows the academic calendar, but co-op terms are generally longer and extend across academic term breaks.

While on co-op, students typically observe the holiday schedule of the employer, not the university.

Co-op Employment Start and End Dates


Co-op Semester Starts

Co-op Semester Ends


Spring 2023 December 26, 2022 April 28, 2023 18 weeks
Summer 2023 May 1, 2023 August 11, 2023 15 weeks
Fall 2023 August 14, 2023 December 15, 2023 17 weeks
Spring 2024 December 27, 2023 April 26, 2024 18 weeks
Summer 2024 April 29, 2024 August 9, 2024 15 weeks