College of EngineeringDepartment of Industrial and Systems EngineeringAcademicsUndergraduateCurrent StudentsCo-op and Internship

Co-op and Internship

Approximately 70 percent of our graduates hold either co-op positions or internships during their college years. The co-op (or formally the Cooperative Education) program is more formalized at Auburn and most students who qualify are able to be placed in positions related to their major. Internships are mostly held during the summer while students are not taking courses; in contrast, co-op students alternate work semesters with school semesters year round. In general, internships are between the employer and student and are not provided, vetted, nor regulated by AU. Finding an internship can be challenging but provides excellent work experience for a student.

There are three primary ways that students in our department may attempt to obtain internships. Use all three ways; they are not in any specific order:

1.  Our alumni and other contacts send internship announcements to the department and we (either Dr. Sa'd Hamasha, Dr. LuAnn Sims Carpenter, or Branden Farmer) forward these to all students on the department electronic mailing list (elist). It is then up to you, the student, to contact the company using the information given, submit your resume, etc. We don’t give student names to the companies; every student in our department is given the same information through email and has an equal opportunity to apply for any position. These announcements are sent out year round so be on the lookout for our e-mails. 

2.  Tell everyone you know and tell your parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, in-laws, and friends to tell everyone they know that you are an industrial engineering student looking for a summer internship. Many students obtain internships through word of mouth or personal referrals in this way. Also, if you know of a specific company you want to work with, go online to their website and see if they have positions open for internships. You may also go in person if possible to the physical hiring location and submit your resume. If you want to know the names of companies in a particular area that might have internships, go to the chamber of commerce website(s) for the area. For example, the websites for the chambers of commerce for this area (Lee and Chambers County) are:

a.  Auburn, AL:

b.  Opelika, AL:

c.  Greater Valley Area (LaFayette, Lanett, Valley, West Point, GA.):

On a recent visit to the city of Auburn’s chamber website, 23 industries are listed (possible employers of interns):  Auburn Center for Developing Industries, BORBET Alabama, Inc., Briggs & Stratton, CV Holdings, Donaldson Co., GE Aviation, HDI Solutions, Health Information Designs, Hoerbiger Automotive Comfort Systems, Initial Outfitters, KC Sol Tech, Kia Motors Manufacutirng Georgia, Leonard Peterson  Co., Lotte Chemical Alabama, Nikki-America Fuel Systems, LLC, Packaging Corporation of America, Pyongsan America, Rexnord Industries, SCA, Inc, Seohan Auto USA, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Viper Motorcycle, Wal-Mart Distribution Center.

3.  Visit AU’s career center website, or the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering's Office of Career Development and Corporate Relations page for information regarding career fairs. You can review the list of companies that will be at the career fair that are looking for IEs. Even though they may not specifically say they are looking for interns, many are. Use the links given in the table of companies “See Who’s Attending” to search for internships on the companies’ employment websites and apply online if you are interested. Go to the career fair prepared with a resume and target the companies that you are interested in. Learn something about the company that you can ask them about or tell them you’re interested in. You have to sell yourself! Even if you don’t obtain an internship through the career fair, you will gain invaluable experience in presenting yourself professionally. Keep in mind that many companies fill their internship positions by February for summer positions, so if you wait until after Christmas to start looking, you are behind!