Professional Practice Employer Responsibilities


All Professional Practice Employers accept the following responsibilities related to their participation in Purdue University’s Cooperative Education Programs:

  1. Complete the Purdue Professional Practice employer accreditation process by submitting and updating as requested an outline of a typical work program for the initial discipline in which the employer wishes to recruit. The work program describes the assignments that a student might receive in each of the required work sessions. This typical work program description will be approved by the appropriate Faculty Coordinator(s) and School Coordinator(s) when the program is initiated and reviewed, and will be the basis for qualification of the employer to recruit students in that discipline. After a student has successfully completed three work sessions, the employer will be approved to recruit for all disciplines within an academic college at Purdue. Employers initially wishing more than one discipline will require further review.

  2. Commit to provide three alternating work sessions (minimum 41 weeks total) for a 3-session co-op student; and five alternating work sessions (minimum 70 weeks total) for a 5-session co-op student. Ideally, the 3-session plan would include two 17-week (minimum) work sessions during the fall or spring semester, and one 12-week (minimum) work session during the summer, but in no case more than two summer work sessions; and the 5-session plan would include three 17-week (minimum) work sessions during the fall or spring, and two 12-week (minimum) work sessions during the summer, but in no case more than three summer work sessions. Thus, employers need to enter the program with a long-term point of view and provide the full complement of work sessions which Purdue requires of the students, as long as the student’s work performance is rated satisfactory by the supervisor. Any deviations from the required sequence of work and study sessions must be for compelling academic or job-related reasons, must be requested by the student and the employer in writing, and must be approved beforehand by the Faculty Coordinator. Similarly, no employer may allow a student to initiate a professional employment relationship through the Professional Practice Program and then allow that student to convert to Internship-type experience.

  3. Provide employment related to some phase of the student’s field of study. The work experience should supplement, enhance and utilize the student’s background. The work responsibilities should push the student to expand their technical abilities and enhance their educational development.

  4. Provide timely job interview closure to each student considering employment in the Professional Practice Program.

  5. Submit a job description for the expected initial position at the time of recruitment.

  6. Provide a safe work environment and diversified assignments to give the student a variety of experiences.

  7. Provide work of increasing technical involvement and responsibility commensurate with the student’s abilities as the student progresses through the program.

  8. Place the student under the supervision of a qualified manager who can provide the student with effective guidance and counsel during the work session and assist the student in adapting to the work environment and the organization.

  9. Pay the student a reasonable wage commensurate with the student's ability, experience and the job responsibilities.

  10. Counsel with the student regarding job performance and complete a performance evaluation form at the end of each work session.

  11. Approve the written work report required of the student prior to the departure of the student for the subsequent academic session.

  12. Permit Professional Practice Coordinators and/or the Director to visit the work site and the students periodically to review the program.

  13. Allow the collection of reasonable data for statistical evaluation purposes.

  14. Support and assist in the enforcement of the academic standards required for entrance to and continuation in the program. If the Employer’s requirements for minimum GPA for continuation in the program are more stringent than those specified by Purdue University (2.8 for 5-session co-op; 2.6 for 3-session co-op), the Employer will monitor and enforce its own standards, with assistance from Purdue University as may be required.

  15. State that the employer is an equal opportunity employer and abide by all local, state and federal employment laws.

  16. Employers that fail to uphold these responsibilities and the expectations of the Professional Practice Programs at Purdue University may be subject to suspension of their program.