Life as a Kettering University Co-op Student

Kettering University, in Flint, Michigan, is known for its unique cooperative education (co-op) program in which every student is required to participate. Life as a Kettering Co-op student means adapting to a schedule of spending one semester on campus and one off campus, living in the town or city where you co-op.

Isabella Zapinski, Kettering University Co-op studentAccording to sophomore, Isabella Zapinski, it's easier than you might think. Isabella shared her insight on life as a Kettering co-op student with SCV:

SCV: What made you choose Kettering?

Isabella: The co-op program is what attracted me to Kettering and is the main reason I applied here.  The idea of having work experience before graduation while getting a degree in 4.5 years was highly appealing.

SCV:  Where do you co-op?

Isabella:  I am currently a co-op at BOSCH in Charleston, South Carolina.  I absolutely love my job.  It is great to get on-the- job experience.  I learn a lot in the classroom but I have learned the most from my job.  The mentors I have had, have not only helped me to grow as a person but also as an Industrial Engineer. 

SCV:  What does your family think about your life as a co-op college student? 

Isabella:  My mother thinks that the co-op program is great and she is always so thrilled to hear about what I am doing at work and everything that I am learning.  She was able to visit me last work term in South Carolina and got to see where I worked and what I did.  She was also very helpful when I was preparing for interviews and when I was deciding what job to take and what would help to benefit me the most.  Sometimes I even think she wishes she could be a co-op.

SCV: With the live on-campus/live off-campus move each semester, how how have you been able to connect with your school?

Isabella:  Kettering has so much to offer.  When I came here for the LITE (Lives Improve Through Engineering) program, I knew this was the place for me.  It feels like home here.  I have wonderful friends and great professors.  It is like we are a little family because unless you go to Kettering you don't understand the moving every 3 months or co-op program.  I have made friends here with students and professors that I plan to carry on after I graduate.  

SCV:  What advice do you have for the next class of Kettering Co-op students?

Isabella:  Learn to pack light; it makes life and moving much simpler!


About Kettering: Kettering University is ranked #1 for Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) and continues to be ranked in the Top Twenty in the nation in the current edition of "America's Best Colleges Guide," which is published by "U.S.News & World Report." 

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