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Co-op Cycles

Co-op cycles for new students are randomly set during the fall term of the freshman year and students will be notified of their assigned cycle via their official Drexel email account. The Steinbright Career Development Center strives to maintain a balance between fall/winter and spring/summer co-op cycles across all university majors.

Special considerations for cycle assignments are as follows:

  • All Westphal College cycles are determined by the academic departments in consultation with the Steinbright Career Development Center
  • Transfer cycles are set upon review of transfer credits and are determined by the academic departments

Once a student receives official notification, co-op information, including co-op coordinator and cycles, can be viewed under SCDC Services through DrexelOne. A screenshot guide for navigating DrexelOne is also provided in the right bar under "Additional Resources". 

Changing Concentrations

Students choose their co-op concentration upon applying to the University. Currently, students are permitted to change their co-op concentration at any time; however changes can only be applied as follows:

  • Change requests made at the start of the term up until the end of the 2nd week of the term can be made effective immediately (i.e.: if requesting a change the 1st week of the spring term, the concentration change is effective that spring term).
  • Change requests made after the second week of any term are made effective the following term (i.e.: if requesting a change the 3rd week of the spring term, the concentration change is effective the start of the summer term).
  • If a student is an internal or external transfer, he/she is only required to complete two co-ops in the 5COP program (but may have an option to do three depending on student's academic plan).
  • Students changing into a 5COP program must be able to academically complete three required co-op cycles as well as meet all co-op eligibility requirements. The process of changing concentration requires the completion of a Change of Curriculum and Status Form. This form must be initiated by the student's academic advisor and approved by the academic department, the Steinbright Career Development Center, the International Students and Scholars Services office (for international students only) and the Bursar and Financial Aid offices. The change of concentration will not take effect until all offices have approved the change, the student has completed any required consultation appointments, and the final paperwork has been signed at the Student Resource Center.

Military Service Obligations

If you are enrolled in an ROTC program, as reflected in the Drexel system and submitted by the corresponding military unit on campus, you will have co-op cycles set to spring/summer.  The cycle is set to allow for participation in the normal month-long leadership training which generally happens in the summer of your junior year.  You are required to complete five months of co-op and will receive credit for the work experience.  However, if you are selected for additional training, you will have co-op credit reviewed and adjusted upon receipt of military orders. 

Medical LOA

To initiate a Leave of Absence the student must first meet with his/her academic advisor.  Missed co-op terms will need to be made-up.


Due to the varying seasons in which teams are active, special co-op cycles may be needed. Once Steinbright verifies that a student is a member of an NCAA varsity team, the cycle will be switched if necessary. If a student leaves a team, the co-op cycle may revert to the original assigned cycle.

Graduating on a Co-op Term

Drexel University students are required to graduate from an in-class term in order to complete their education-work experience cycle. In response to changes in the university's student profile a number of scenarios have been identified which can be considered cause to appeal for permission to graduate from a co-op cycle.

Students wishing to file a request to graduate from a co-op term must develop a revised plan of study in conjunction with their academic advisor. The advisor then submits the plan along with a letter of support from the program director or department head to Steinbright Career Development Center's Associate Director for Cooperative Education. Requests are reviewed by the Steinbright Career Development Center Appeals Committee in consultation with the Executive Director/Associate Vice Provost.

Due to program requirements, students in certain programs/majors cannot graduate from a co-op term. Complications arise from academic and co-op as well as billing areas that would preclude any exceptions. Case by case appeals may be considered as above in truly unique situations.

Note: Changes to a standing academic plan carry billing and financial aid implications. SFS and SRC should be consulted along with academic advisor to determine the best path.

Co-op Cycle Swap Policy

It is the responsibility of the Steinbright Career Development Center (Steinbright) to establish a reasonable balance of the number of new students, by declared academic major or intended major, designated to work in each of the two principal co-op cycles (fall/winter or spring/summer).

New freshman only (no transfers) desiring a co-op experience on a cycle different from the one designated may request an exchange (a swap). This exchange must be with a student in the SAME college, the SAME class year and the SAME major (e.g., Chemical Engineering 4-year student and Chemical Engineering 4-year student, Psychology 5-year student and Psychology 5-year student, etc.). The guidelines for exchanging co-op cycles are as follows:

  • If a freshman has identified another freshman on the opposite co-op cycle in the same college, class year and major, then both students must come to Steinbright at 3201 Arch Street, Annex Suite 110, to register as a swap pair.
  • If a freshman has not identified another freshman to swap with, then the student needs to come to Steinbright at 3201 Arch Street, Annex Suite 110, and register their request in the Swap Book. Steinbright will make every attempt to match all eligible students, but this may not be possible.

Friday, October 28, 2016 at 5 p.m. is the deadline for these requests to be submitted to Steinbright. All students' co-op cycles will be permanently scheduled for the length of their undergraduate academic program after this date. Students will be notified in writing of their new cycle by November 4, 2016. If no swap could be made, those students will also receive this information in writing. No swaps will be effective until they are in writing.