Cooperative Work Experience

The Cooperative Work Experience (CWE) program builds the bridge from college to career by providing on-the-job training for career success. Integrating coursework with work experience enables students to earn credit while working full or part time in positions related to their college programs.

  • Students work 30 hours per college credit.
  • Students participate in a seminar to support job success and are evaluated on performance at the end of the term. 
  • CWE is required for all professional/technical programs and can be a part of many transfer degree programs at Clackamas Community College.

Cooperative Work Experience for Employers

Employing CWE students gives you a direct link to skilled workers prior to entering the workforce. Your investment of time can be rewarded with great, hardworking students.

Together, you’ll create an agreement that spells out the students' start/end dates, work hours, duties, wage (if paid), expectations and accomplishments.

For more information about hiring a CWE student, check out our CWE employer guide.

Employers’ Frequently Asked Questions

Who pays the costs of workers' compensation insurance?
Can I terminate students if they are not meeting satisfactory standards?

Cooperative Work Experience for students

Put your education to work! The Cooperative Work Experience (CWE) program enables you to earn college credit while gaining on-the-job experience.

CWE student information

Required forms for students

Roles and Responsibilities for CWE


  • Interview and hire students
  • Sign the agreement
  • Approve student learning outcomes
  • Develop a work schedule
  • Provide time to orient, train and give feedback to students
  • Periodically review progress with students
  • Meet twice during the term with the student and instructor at your worksite
  • Evaluate student's performance at the end of the term
  • Evaluate the CWE program


  • Meet with an advisor and your CWE program instructor
  • Complete a CWE application
  • Submit resume and interview with employer
  • Register for appropriate CWE course and a CWE seminar
  • Develop learning outcomes and complete the work agreement
  • Complete job assignments
  • Work required hours for the number of credits enrolled
  • Collaborate with instructor and employer

CWE Program Instructors

  • Approve worksite and instructor consent to enroll in the course
  • Assist students in developing learning objectives and completing the agreement
  • Review progress with employer and student at the worksite mid-term
  • Maintain records of students participating in CWE
  • Meet with employer and student to grade student's performance at end of term
  • Calculate final grades based on employer and seminar instructor feedback
  • Assist employers with forms and questions as needed