Thursday, August 8, 2013

Co-op Student Newsletter

Stay Connected to RIT, While Gaining Experience
Summer 2013 Issue
Co-op Factoids | Out On Co-op| Making the Most of Your Co-op Tip: What Not to Do Before You Leave Your Co-op | Share Your Experience | Workplace Humor | Are You Number One?


Number of students on co-op:  2,498!
Number of companies employing co-op students: 1,437

Number of students on co-op internationally: 62
Just some of the countries include: Australia, China, Germany,  Ireland, England, Japan, Rwanda, Switzerland

Top 5 Companies hiring the most students this quarter (excluding RIT): Advance Testing, BorgWarner Morse, GE-Aviation, Microsoft, Wegmans

Co-op City Trivia:  A chemical engineering student is working for Cummins Filtration in Nashville, Tennessee this summer. Nashville's Grand Ole Opry is the longest continuously running live radio program in the world. It has broadcast every Friday and Saturday night since 1925.  A replica of The Parthenon, the famous ancient Greek building in Athens, Greece, stands in Nashville's Centennial Park. Tennessee was the last state to secede from the Union during the Civil War and the first state to be readmitted after the war.

OUT ON CO-OP – Profiles of RIT Students

Krithika Sairamesh
Computer Science MS major
San Diego California

Hi, I am Krithika Sairamesh, a Computer Science graduate student at RIT. I am currently working at Intuit, San Diego as a Software Development Co-op. I work with the user experience team on the Turbo Tax Online application.

My job responsibilities include understanding customers and their problems, conducting customer research and developing a simple and informative User Experience. In short, developing a wholesome front-end experience.

This Co-op has helped me to network with technical specialists, tax experts and leaders at Intuit. I am learning how organizations work coherently in teams using the agile model for software development.

This Co-op is especially useful in helping me adapt to the corporate work environment and learning about the various processes used in product development. The pleasant climate and the plethora of fun activities out here make the relocation to San Diego completely worth it.

Madeline Hoppy
Industrial Design BFA major
Stride Rite, part of Collective Brands Performance and Lifestyle Group
Lexington, MA

Without question, this past summer in Boston was the most rewarding summer of my life. The opportunity to learn and grow in an environment full of fun, creative and passionate people at Stride Rite, Saucony, Sperry and Keds was beyond incredible. As a design student a heart, I was wary to jump into the marketing world for my first Co-op. However, with the knowledge I gained through my classes in the business school, I was prepared for the challenge.

The Co-op experience allowed me to work closely with the Design and Marketing team, and various professionals within the company. In one of my many projects, I created a design and marketing brief, collaborated with an outside agency, and developed a sticker and bag flier that is in stores today. This accomplishment proved that my hard work and dedication to the position made an impact.

I also took part in the Collective Brands Sales Meeting week, which was a weeklong conference presenting the new spring 2013 line. I had lunch with sales representatives, got to know co-workers during night out events in Boston, and even felt like a part of the team with our matching Sperry 2012 Olympic team vests and Authentic Original shoes.

Holli Monroe
Mechanical Engineering, Energy & the Environment
New York Power Authority
Buffalo, NY

Energy!  Conservation!  Efficiency!  Green!  Today’s world is full of buzz words reflecting the importance of environmental preservation as it relates to power.  Within the Energy Services & Technology department of the New York Power Authority (NYPA), our work centers on this issue. 

At NYPA, our Statewide Energy Services team works with a varying customer base - towns, cities, school districts, college campuses, and others.  Our team reduces customers’ energy costs by providing services that either improve the energy efficiency of existing systems, or introduce new energy technologies.  The work we perform provides a physical embodiment of engineering, and it addresses the current concerns of fuel depletion and environmental degradation.  Saving energy and saving money go hand-in-hand with our projects to upgrade lighting, replace boilers, improve HVAC system, install photovoltaic panels, and more.

In a project engineering capacity, I assist in the facilitation of such energy conservation projects.  By the very nature of this work, my job varies day-to-day.  I might begin a week in the office, where I will perform preliminary energy savings calculations to determine the feasibility and advisability of a potential project.  Then, a couple days later, I could be on-site observing contractors and speaking with a foreman regarding on ongoing project.  I may then round out the week with a construction meeting and the completion of a series of environmental disposals that I coordinated previously.  No two days are alike.  No week am I sitting at a desk for 40 hours.

As an engineering co-op at NYPA, I am treated as a professional in the company.  I attend project meetings as a NYPA representative.  I have access to company vehicles and company funds to visit project sites throughout the Western New York area – some requiring me to travel extensively and stay overnight.  I have even personally reached out to potential customers and completed the preliminary design of their projects.     

With the professionalism that NYPA shows its young employees come a few added benefits.  NYPA has invested in me in the form of educational seminars and training sessions.  The company has allowed me flexibility with my work schedule.  I have even been given the opportunity to extensively tour the Robert Moses Niagara Hydroelectric Power Station; exploring the nuances of the facility, including everything from the instrumentation in the control room to standing inside the penstock piping of generating unit.

My experience at the New York Power Authority has been fruitful in terms of experience, and has reaffirmed that I am in my desired field.  In fact, I loved my first 6-month co-op at NYPA so much that I returned for another 6-month term (even though my RIT co-op requirements have already been fulfilled); now that’s a testament to the NYPA internship program, RIT cooperative education, and my enthusiasm for the work I perform within the Energy Services & Technology department! 

MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR CO-OP TIP – What Not to Do Before You Leave Your Co-op

Your co-op may be ending, winding down or gearing up for the next block. The impression you leave with your employer could have lasting effects on your career - either positively or negatively.
Here are some tips on “What Not to Do” to end your co-op:

·         Don’t leave your co-op without making connections for networking in the future. Invite your co-workers and supervisors to connect with you on LinkedIn. You can keep in touch with them to learn what new things are happening in the company, learn about job opportunities should you want to work there again, or just to keep in touch.

·         Don’t leave any loose ends or projects incomplete. Make sure everything you worked on is “buttoned up” nicely and ready for the next person to use or continue working on. One of the worst things that can be said about a co-op or intern after they leave is he or she never finished their projects.

·         Don’t take anything proprietary with you. Make sure you have returned all software, equipment or other resources to your employer before you leave.

·         Don’t forget to complete your co-op work report! Do it while it’s fresh in your mind, before your co-op ends. Not completing the report in a timely manner can result in an ‘F’ on your transcript. Also, double check with your supervisor to make sure they have completed the evaluation which also affects your grade. A link to the work report can be found on our website.

·         Don’t end the co-op without receiving feedback or going over your evaluation with your supervisor. Learning how to receive and integrate constructive criticism will prove important for your future co-ops and full time jobs. In addition to this make sure you get that critical recommendation letter before you go.

·         Don’t hesitate to say ‘thank you’. A small gesture of thanks goes a long way. Acknowledge your co-workers and supervisors for spending time training and mentoring you. If you did not enjoy your co-op be gracious and say thank you anyway.


RIT co-op students have worked all over the world, with large and small companies, collaborating with all types of people. We are building a collection of photos/videos of RIT students at work to feature in future co-op newsletters and possibly on our site.

Interested in sharing a photo (or video) of yourself "on the job"? The more active and specific to your job the better!

If you wish to submit something -- please include the following:
Name, Major:
Company Name:
City, State/ or Country:

Even better, want to do a brief write up about your co-op experience? Please include:

Job Description:
How Did you Find the Job?
Tips for First Time Co-ops?
How Did Co-op Benefit You?

Email it to Gretchen Burruto Thanks!!


We don’t have co-op students writing copy for Someecards this summer, but did you know we have three students working at American Greetings with the AGInteractive team?


Students – are you the first co-op student your company has ever had? If you’ve had a good co-op experience, but are now leaving, this is your chance to help your company and other RIT students too!

Before you go, talk with your supervisor about the possibility of hiring another RIT student, to continue the work you started, or work on a new project. It’s easy to post a co-op position on our employer web site –, and if they have any questions, you can refer them to your program coordinator, or our main office – 585.475.2301. Your supervisor may even want you to be involved in recruiting your successor!

Thank you for helping us maintain a good relationship with your company, and develop co-op opportunities for other RIT students.

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