Graduate Co-op Departmental Approval Letter (MS Word document)
Graduate Internship Approval for Graduate Co-op Credit
Registering your internship with the Graduate Cooperative Program (Grad Co-op) ensures that you remain enrolled at Georgia Tech during your work term. Your Grad Co-op work assignment will be permanently noted on your Georgia Tech transcript. No tuition is charged.
- Create a record in CareerBuzz. Log in here: https://gatech-csm.symplicity.com
- Under “My Account,” click “Exp. Learning.” Fill out the information and submit your application. Once your CareerBuzz application is approved, you will have full CareerBuzz access. This application is required only once.
- Provide offer letter from prospective co-op/internship employer. (Offer letter must include start/end dates of internship, exact street address, city, state and zip code of internship site.)
Sample Offer Letter (Adobe PDF file)
- Obtain a signed approval from your academic adviser
- Indicate full-time or part-time.
- Masters need academic adviser approval
- Doctoral students need academic adviser and faculty adviser approval
- Upload these documents into CareerBuzz (https://gatech-csm.symplicity.com).
- On CareerBuzz home page, click "Submit/Edit a Co-op/Internship Placement"
- Select "Add New" to create a record of your internship.
- At the bottom, add your scanned documents "Offer letter" and "Approval”
- Contact Grad Co-op for final approval including Grad Co-op course permit
- Register in the tuition-free, no fee audit course during open registration periods
- Deadline to submit documents Friday before classes begin
- F students require off-campus work authorization using CPT (Curricular Practical Training) or OPT (Optional Practical Training. Consult OIE for details https://oie.gatech.edu
- J students require off campus work authorization using “Academic Training;” Consult OIE
- Grad Co-op for F-1 students can be approved using CPT or pre-completion OPT
- CPT can be used any semester including summer
- Pre-completion OPT can be used at any time for off-campus employment that is directly related to a student’s field of study. If a student is not eligible for CPT, they should consult OIE to learn more about pre-completion OPT.
- Complete steps 1-8 listed above for all students
- CPT will be requested at the time of Grad Co-op approval for F-1 students
- OIE requires 5 business days to process CPT requests
- OIE will send you an e-mail when your updated I-20 is ready
- CPT Dates
- CPT authorization can begin as early as the Monday following the previous last day of the term
- CPT authorization must end no later than the last day of the semester
- There are no CPT end date exceptions
- Using OPT after CPT to extend work into official institute break period
- Any student eligible for pre-completion OPT can apply for that authorization for the break/vacation period between semesters.
- Summer example: F-1 students could work on their CPT authorization through C2D2 for the summer term and then transition to Pre-completion OPT for the official institute break period.
- Pre-completion OPT does have limitations: USCIS adjudication, fees, loss of post-completion OPT days, etc.
- This is not a quick fix. Approvals go through the USCIS and average 90 days before EAD cards are available. You cannot work until the EAD card is available.
- OIE urges any student considering this Pre-completion OPT option to discuss it with an advisor in OIE due to the timing and risks for delays that come with USCIS adjudication.
Grad Co-op Course Credit
- The no-cost 12 audit hour course (COOP 6012) maintains your full-time student status
- Enrollment as a grad co-op guarantees you maintain library privileges, etc.
- Approved for a minimum of 32 hours per week
- Grad Co-ops, included F-1 students are eligible to work over 40 hours per week
- No-cost three, six, or nine audit hour courses (COOP 6009/6006/6003) help maintain your status but must be accompanied by additional tuition-based coursework.
- F-1 students can be approved for part-time CPT (20 hours or less per week)
- Spring/Fall Grad Co-op registration requires a minimum of 16 work weeks
- Summer Grad Co-op registration requires a minimum of 10 work weeks
Whom to Contact
College of Computing students contact Reina Grundhoefer in the College of Computing advising area to complete paperwork for your registration.
All Students (except College of Computing)
Visit Grad Co-op Office Location: The Center for Career Discovery and Development on the first floor of the Bill Moore Success Center, next to the Tech Tower.