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A History of Applied Learning at RIT

RIT has a rich tradition of encouraging and emphasizing the importance of cooperative education for students’ educational experiences. As a Saunders student, you benefit from this vast resource of experience and corporate relationships. Employers place great value in RIT graduates and recognize our students as being Business Ready – DAY ONE, as evidenced by our 94% outcomes rate.

RIT is a World Leader in Cooperative Education

For nearly 100 years, the hallmark of an RIT education has been the practical, paid work experience provided through cooperative education. RIT was among the first universities to begin cooperative education back in 1912, and today our co-op program is the fourth oldest and one of the largest in the world.

Each year, more than 4,300 RIT students complete more than 5,700 work assignments and are employed by nearly 2,200 employers coast-to-coast and abroad. Co-op is one of the most effective means for employers to identify and acquire key talent – few institutions have done it as well or as long as RIT. RIT’s extensive experience and resources allow us to successfully meet the needs of nearly all types of employing organizations.

At RIT, tuition is not charged for the terms students are employed as a co-op student. Employers pay a full-time salary. We gather co-op salary data, by program, and make it available to employers to assist them in setting a competitive pay range. Last year, RIT co-op students earned more than $45 million through their employment with industry, business, government, and the not-for-profit sectors throughout the U.S. and in 40 foreign countries. Many students find that their co-op earnings can go a long way toward helping them finance their RIT education.

Career Services and Cooperative Education

A dedicated and valuable resource for students is the Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education. Career services coordinators are assigned to each major and are available year round to assist and advise students with the job search process and any career-related concerns. You can meet with your individual career services coordinator for personalized service, as well as through regularly offered seminars and workshops. Career services coordinators work closely with your academic department and foster relationships with employers and develop employment opportunities. We are here to assist you in securing a co-op job and support you while you are working. Learn more about their services by visiting the Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education website.