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A Cooperative Co Op Experience

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.4.1 - 3.4.5

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Paper Authors

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Stanley J. Pisarski

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James L. Hales

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1148

A Cooperative Co-op Experience James L. Hales, Stanley J. Pisarski University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown


The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (UPJ) is a branch campus of the University of Pittsburgh system. Engineering Technology in three departments--civil, electrical, and mechanical--was commenced in the early 70’s. The BSET degree is offered exclusively on the Johnstown campus. Engineering programs are offered in Pittsburgh.

In 1977, a co-op program was implemented on the Johnstown Campus for ET students. After four years, it was terminated. The reasons are discussed. Subsequently, the School of Engineering in Pittsburgh developed and implemented a co-op program for its engineering students in various disciplines. In 1995, the ET departments at UPJ began using the School of Engineering’s Co-op Program in Pittsburgh to place ET students in co-op assignments.

The paper discusses the challenges of interfacing with and logistics of utilizing a co-op office which is seventy miles away. The success and failures in placing ET students in co-op assignments are discussed. INTRODUCTION

The objective of this paper is to present the results of experiences with cooperative education in the Engineering Technology Division of the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown (UPJ). The University of Pittsburgh has four branch campuses. UPJ is the largest of these and is approximately seventy miles east of Pittsburgh on the Laurel plateau in the Allegheny Mountains of western Pennsylvania. The Engineering Technology Division is one of five divisions on a campus of just under three thousand students. History of the Engineering Technology Program at UPJ

As part of the initiation of four-year programs at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, agreement was reached in 1970 between the Johnstown campus and the School of Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh to establish a Bachelor of Science Degree program in Engineering Technology exclusively in Johnstown. Prior to 1970, the Johnstown campus served essentially as a two-year feeder program to the University of Pittsburgh School of Engineering. At that time approximately fifty students transferred annually to the various engineering departments at the University of Pittsburgh, with a few transferring to other schools such as the Pennsylvania State University and West Virginia University.

With the decision to commence the four-year Engineering Technology program at UPJ, an Engineering Technology freshman class of sixty students was enrolled. Civil, electrical, and mechanical engineering technology degree options were established. At the start of the program, the Engineering Technology faculty consisted of four professors. The first class of sixty-five students graduated on April 27, 1975. Planned growth in the program brought the peak total full- time day enrollment close to 550 in 1982 with twenty-one faculty members. In the most recent school year (1996-97) there were 257 students enrolled. The faculty consists of eighteen members. There are more than 1900 total graduates of the three programs working throughout the United States and in foreign countries.

Pisarski, S. J., & Hales, J. L. (1998, June), A Cooperative Co Op Experience Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington.

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