Application Process

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The Co-op Program will be using Handshake to receive the application materials to the Co-op Program. We will be using Handshake ONLY to receive the applications and for employers to access applications. You will not be able to view any of the employer co-op job descriptions on Handshake; you will receive them from the Co-op Program after the Co-op Job Fair, if you’ve been accepted to the Co-op Program.

Applying through Handshake

  1. Click on this link, and log into Handshake for the job posting.
  2. Sign in with your UMN password. If you haven’t set up a profile, you’ll be asked to do so and will need to respond to an email verification to confirm your account.
  3. If you haven't been brought to the job posting, then in the top bar click on Jobs. Then search for “UMN Engineering Co-op Program Student Application” and apply! If you cannot find it, try searching for the job posting number, #3442868.
  4. The Handshake application instructions and forms are listed below for your convenience. You will find it helpful to prepare all of the materials ahead of time, before logging into Handshake. DO NOT email the application materials to the Co-op Office but submit them on Handshake.

There are FOUR separate documents or forms that need to be submitted when applying to the Co-op Program.

1. Online Registration Form

The Online Registration Form lets us know of your interest in the Co-op Program and alerts us to search for your materials on Handshake. This form takes only a few minutes. Fill it out if even if you aren't sure you will continue with the rest of the application.

  • This online form is not submitted on Handshake but is a Google Form. All of the other documents are submitted to Handshake.
  • This form is for Co-op office use only. You can submit this at any time and follow up with the other documents before the deadline (see the Co-op Calendar at
  • The form requires you to be logged in with your University of Minnesota x500 id (for example, log into your MyU page and then open the Online Application form link). If you get an error message, try opening up the link in an incognito or private window.

2. Major-specific PDF Application Form

This is the application that the employers will view. Each application is specific to your major. An important part of the application is the essay about what you are looking for in a Co-op position. Many employers look at the essay first when deciding on who to interview. Make sure you spend time on writing and editing it, making use of the advice on the Co-op Essay Tips webpage.

After the application link is opened, click on the download button at the top of the screen. Open the download in Acrobat Reader to fill out the form.

Biomedical Engineering

Chemical Engineering

Computer Engineering

Electrical Engineering

Industrial and Systems Engineering

Materials Science and Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

Submission Instructions:

  1. Save your application using this title format: Your LastName_FirstName_SemesterYear_Application (example: Doe_John_Sp19_Application.pdf).
  2. After you have saved your application, save or print it to a PDF and submit that version.
    1. "Print to a PDF" should ""flatten" the information in the form so it isn't edittable anymore. But be sure to save the application for yourself in case you need to edit your application.
    2. Students with Macs will need to PRINT to a PDF because save to a pdf sends us a blank application form when opened by a Windows machine.
      1. More information here, and
  3. Submit the application on Handshake to the job “Engineering Co-op Program Student Application”

Double-check These Items:

  • Are you using a current application? The applications are often revised. The latest version will always be on this page and on Handshake.
  • Is the application complete? There are 3 pages to it. Be sure to fill in everything.
  • Did you check the signature/permission box? We need your permission to share the application with employers.

3. Current Resume

Your resume will be included in the application package the employers will receive. This is an important document in making a good first impression on the potential employer. See the Resume Writing Tips page if you need assistance.

Resume Feedback: If you submit your resume as part of your Handshake profile, BEFORE you submit the Co-op application package, the CSE Career Office may be able to give you feedback on it, if you do so before the third week of the semester.

It is a good idea to print copies of your resume to bring to the Co-op Job Fair and to the interviews.

Submission Instructions

  • The resume should be current and must be submitted as a PDF. Your formatting can change if it is submitted as a Word document.
    • Limit the resume to one page.
  • Name your resume in the same way as you did the application (example: Doe_John_Sp19_Resume.pdf).
  • Submit the resume on Handshake to the job “Engineering Co-op Program Student Application”.

4. Current Unofficial Transcript

Employers will also receive your current unofficial transcript in the application materials. Because students often don't have a relevant work history, many employers use the transcript as a substitute.

If you have trouble requesting your unofficial transcript, make sure you have your popup blocker turned off. This has caused problems for students in the past.

    Submission Instructions

    • The transcript needs to be a current unofficial transcript in PDF format. An official transcript is not necessary.
    • Name your transcript in the same way as you did the application (example: Doe_John_Sp19_Transcript.pdf)
    • If you would like to redact your birthdate or ID number on your transcript, you may do so.
    • Do NOT send an APASS report as it is too hard for employers to read.
    • Submit the transcript on Handshake to the job “Engineering Co-op Program Student Application”

    Transfer Student Transcripts

    Transfer students need to submit their transfer school transcripts, however Handshake will only accept one transcript document. Therefore you need to merge them with your unofficial U of M transcript (you can use the free PDF Mergy on Google Drive) with your U of M transcript first. Please redact (black out) any information you don't want potential employers to view.

    Remember, transfer students need to have completed one UMN CSE semester before they can apply to the Co-op Program. If this is your first semester, please email the Co-op Program to explain your situation. See the Eligibility page for more information.


    Except for the online form, the other 3 documents (application, resume, and transcript) must be submitted to Handshake by the due date (see the calendar on this website's Home page).

    • Make sure all of your documents are PDFs to preserve the formatting of your materials. An employer's word processing program may distort your resume formatting.
    • Make sure they are all named in the format of your LastName_FirstName_SemesterYear_Document

    You will be notified by email within a week of submission whether or not you have been accepted into the Co-op Program. Once you are accepted into the Co-op Program, your application materials will be made available for current employers to view.

    Reapplying to the Co-op Program

    Students may apply and interview no more than three semesters, submitting new application materials each time. Make sure the current application form is being used, the resume and transcript are current, and the essay has been rewritten. Students who have not been placed with an employer after three interview periods should focus on completing their degree and will not be allowed to interview for a fourth time.

    Students who have been placed with a Co-op employer and have taken the Co-op courses may not go through the program a second time.