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Best Practices for hiring a Co-op Student

Employer Responsibilities

Employers must register with the Career Center prior to participating in the Co-op Program. Be certain to check yes in the Cooperative Education Access area under the Services Requested section of the Registration Form.

Job assignments must be related to the students' major field of study. Diversification is encouraged to afford the student a range of training and experience. The technical level and degree of complexity should be increased as the student demonstrates competency and progresses through the program.

Each co-op student must be evaluated by the employer on the form provided by the University Co-op Office. The completed evaluation form should be discussed with the student and must be returned to the Co-op Office within the specified time period.

Employers are expected to identify Co-op students needs well in advance of the projected begin work date. Registered employers may forward anticipated needs for Co-op students by posting job request(s) at Career Center Connections, by email, by phone, or by letter.

Initial Steps

  1. Complete registration at MSU Career Center. A personal visit to the university has been found very helpful by many employers in developing a new program.
  2. Post job request(s) at Career Center Connections or email the Co-op Office with additional information or questions. Most employers also provide recruiting brochures, videos, and applications for interested students.

Employing A Co-op Student

Generally one of four (4) methods is used to employ Co-op students:

  1. Co-op Interview Days (IVD)
  2. On-campus student interviews (OCR)
  3. Work location student interviews
  4. Telephone interviews with student referrals

Co-op Interview Days is the first opportunity that employers have to interview Co-op students in any given semester. IVD is held each February and October to allow employers early access to potential candidates. As with all the methods, the Co-op Office prescreens the students and can provide transcripts, resumes, and employment applications if desired. During the selection process, the Co-op Office expects to be kept informed regarding any and all actions taken. Copies of correspondence between the employer and the student should be forwarded to the Co-op Office. Employers may schedule on-campus interviews after IVD through the MSU Career Center.

Final Placement and Acceptance

The employer should notify the student directly by mail or email regarding any offer of Co-op employment. A copy of the offer must also be sent to the MSU Co-op Office. After receipt of the employer's offer and acceptance by the student, the Co-op Office finalizes official acceptance of the student into the Co-op Program.

Other Related Information

  1. Work and school semesters have established beginning and ending dates as announced through the University's "Co-op Calendar" which is provided to each employer. By mutual employer/student consent, the work dates may extend beyond those published in the "Co-op Calendar".
  2. Employers may periodically receive requests for "at work" photographs of Co-op students. These photographs are used in conjunction with various publicity activities of the Co-op Program.
  3. Mid-way through each work semester, the Co-op Office emails the employer an evaluation request for each "at work" student. All evaluations must be submitted on-line to the Co-op Office by the date requested.
  4. Student benefits, including compensation, travel expenses, insurance, vacation, sick leave, per diem, tuition assistance, reimbursement, etc., remain as items fully under the jurisdiction of the individual employer.
  5. Employers may find it helpful to review the MSU Co-op student Rules and Regulations governing the Mississippi State University Co-op Program.

Best Practices for hiring an Internship Student

Co-op and Internship Interview Days

Spring 2019 Co-op and Internship Interview Day | February 26 & 27, Colvard Student Union, Foster Ballroom

Information for Recruiters

Schedule of Events each Day

  • 7:30 to 8:30 – Registration with refreshments
  • 8:30 to 12:00 – Interviews
  • 12:00 to 1:00 – Lunch
  • 1:00 to 4:30 – Interviews and afternoon refreshments

Registration Fees and Deadlines

To Register follow this link: https://msstate-csm.symplicity.com/employers/

$175.00 fee includes reservation of one interview schedule and lunch for up to 2 representatives. Payment may be made by check or credit card (American Express, MasterCard or VISA). Registration and payment deadline is 5:00 PM on Thursday, January 24th, 2019.

Interview packets

Interview packets with interview schedule, student resumes, and transcripts will be provided at check in on the day of your schedule. You can access your interview schedule and student resumes by logging in to your Connections account at https://msstate-csm.symplicity.com/employers/. Transcripts will not be provided in advance of your arrival on campus.


The registration fee includes registration and lunch for up to 2 representatives.


Each organization will be provided one 6-foot rectangular table and tablecloth. We will not be able to provide electricity due to our location.


Directions to the Colvard Student Union.


Parking will be available at the metered spots in front of Subway on Lee Blvd which leads to the Union. These spots have been reserved for this event and will be marked with orange cones and an attendant will be available to assist you. Parking permits will be sent via email prior to the event and will allow you to park in any space on campus with the exception of handicapped, timed or campus service parking. Overflow parking will be provided at McAllen gated lot.

Air Services

The Golden Triangle Regional Airport is located 15 miles east of Starkville. Rental cars are available at the airport.


  • LaQuinta Inn and Suites ( Starkville’s Newest Hotel), 662-270-4100
  • Holiday Inn Express, 662-324-0076
  • Comfort Suites, 662-324-9595
  • Hampton Inn, 662-324-1333
  • Hilton Garden Inn, 662-615-9664
  • Microtel Inn & Suites, 662-615-0700
  • Americas Best Value Inn and Suites, 662-323-6161

Additional Information:

Lisa Gooden-Hunley
The Career Center – Cooperative Education Program

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