Cooperative Education

Cooperative Education

Explore Internships, Jobs and
Student Assistant Opportunities

Internships (experiential learning) are highly encouraged due to the knowledge you will gain with on-the-job work experience that complements the knowledge you gain in the classroom!

In today’s labor market, employers are increasingly looking to hire new college graduates. An internship will allow you to gain additional career experience that complements your education. The earlier you begin building these skills, the more opportunities will be available to you after graduation. An internship is a great way to gain work experience in your field of study or explore a different field of work.

According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers Job Outlook 2015 Report:

  • 72.5% of employers prefer to hire candidates with relevant work experience
  • 60% of employers prefer internships/co-ops as the means to gaining work experience

The point is... You really should do an internship or multiple internships while in college!

What are some of the benefits of internships?

  • You'll gain practical work experience, work habits and transferable skills
  • Applying what you've learned in the classroom to the workplace
  • Earning college credit (if you need to fulfill elective credit hours)
  • Exploring a prospective career path
  • Developing new skills, knowledge and confidence in your own abilities
  • Establishing professional work habits and attitudes
  • Networking with professionals in your field
  • Earning employment references and letters of recommendation
  • You can take your career plan for a test drive - you might discover early that another field might be a better fit and wouldn't you rather figure this out before your graduate?
  • Open the door to a potential job offer

Earn academic elective credit while you work

Enroll in a Cooperative Education (Co-Op) course! What is Co-Op? It's a college course in which you may earn one to six hours of elective academic credit while gaining work experience via your employment, an internship or volunteering during the semester you are enrolled.

  • It’s a great way for you to gain work experience in your major or explore a different field of work
  • This experience is valuable in helping you build a professional resume and network with local employers

What is a Co-op course?

Co-op is designed to enhance your learning and apply practical skills and learned  theories to work related duties in your field of study.

  • With help from the Co-op Coordinator, you can be placed in an appropriate business, industry, government agency or educational institution and earn college credit while gaining practical knowledge at the same time.
  • Co-op is an elective course in which you can earn one to six hours of elective academic credit for work experience via employment, an internship or volunteering during the semester(s) you are enrolled in Co-op. You and your employer/supervisor complete a learning agreement containing learning objectives that you should meet or progress towards during your internship or other work experience.

 You have two main responsibilities in Co-op:

  •  Have or obtain a work position (paid or unpaid) with a company and perform practical job functions for one semester. Your co-op work experience may be done via your regular job, an internship or as a volunteer.
  • Complete weekly reflection assignments utilizing the GCSC Canvas Learning Management System.


How do I find a Co-op / Internship?

  • Contact the Cooperative Education Coordinator to discuss your interests, availability and major
  • Look on the Co-op web page for a list of current internship opportunities
  • Research organizations where you may have an interest in interning
  • Attend career fairs at the college and through Career Source Gulf Coast
  • Students employed on campus via student assistant and work study programs may use this work experience to earn Co-op elective credit


Contact us

Kimberly Hoyt
Coordinator, Cooperative Education and Service Learning
Student Assistants Administrator

T 850.872.3874
Student Union East (SUE) Office 39
Gulf Coast State College does not discriminate against any person in its programs, activities, policies or procedures on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, national origin, marital status, religion, age, gender, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, disability, or veteran status. All questions or inquiries regarding compliance with laws relating to non-discrimination and all complaints regarding sexual misconduct or discrimination, may be directed to Mary Nicholson, Executive Director of Human Resources/Title II/504/Title IX Coordinator and Employment Equity Officer, Gulf Coast State College, 5230 W. US Highway 98, Panama City, FL 32401; 850-872-3866.