Cooperative Education

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Explore Internships and Jobs!
build neccessary skills
for today's workforce


According to the National Association of Colleges and employers
(NACE Journal), august 2017:

College students need to prepare for rapidly changing work environments by acquiring desirable skills. Globalization and diversity of the economy require workers who can meet the emerging roles in new work environments. Students without transferrable (soft) skills and education to adapt to the changing work environment will be challenged to compete for employment.

What are Soft Skills?
Transferrable or "soft" skills are those that are necessary regardless of the field or sector of the work force. Five of the most important soft skills cited by employers as being valued in the work environment are the abilities to:

  • Verbally communicate with persons inside and outside the organization
  • Work in a team structure
  • Make decisions and solve problems
  • Plan, organize, and prioritize work
  • Obtain and process information

The skills above align closely with the competencies NACE identified as relevant to a college graduate's career readiness.


how can an internship help me acquire career readiness?

  • develop technical and soft skills to help you compete effectively in the job market and in life
  • improve your interpersonal communication skills and build your confidence
  • gain practical work experience and begin establishing professional work habits and transferable skills
  • apply what you've learned in the classroom to the workplace
  • become more comfortable networking with professionals
  • earn employment references and letters of recommendation
  • an internship can open the door to a potential job offer

you can Earn academic elective credit while you work

Enroll in a Cooperative Education (Co-op) course!  It’s a great way for you to gain work experience in your major or explore a different field of work and earn academic credit at the same time! 

What is a Co-op course?

Co-op is a course in which you can earn one (1) to six (6) hours of elective academic credit for work experience via employment, an internship or volunteering during the semester(s) you are enrolled in Co-op.

  • With help from the Co-op Coordinator, you can be placed in an appropriate business or industry and earn college credit while gaining practical knowledge at the same time.
  • 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 complete weekly reflection assignments via the Co-op course in Canvas
  • Co-op is designed to enhance your learning and apply practical skills and learned  theories to your work duties.

Read some student comments about their Co-op course!

How do I find an 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

T 850.872.3874

Student Union East (SUE) Office 59

 “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  John Mercer, Vice President, Administration & Finance/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.