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Cooperative Work Experience

Cooperative Work Experience (CWE) is an internship program at Clackamas Community College that builds a bridge from college to career. Students can earn college credit while gaining valuable on-the-job training for career success.

  • Students work 30 hours per college credit.
  • Students can opt to work full time or part time in positions related to their college programs. 
  • 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?
What are the benefits of CWE for employers?
How can I host a CWE student?
What are the costs associated with CWE?
How many hours can students work during their CWE?
What's the difference between CWE and Internship?

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.

Step 01

Meet with CWE Instructor

Meet with the CWE Instructor from your department at least one to two terms before you plan to take your CWE class and learn about CWE requirements for your program.

Step 02

Prepare Resume and Cover Letter

Update your resume and cover letter. Visit the Career Center for help creating or updating your resume/cover letter. Contact or 503-594-6001.

Step 03

Find a CWE Site

Search for a site with assistance from your CWE Instructor. If you have a job related to your program of study, you might be able to use this as your CWE site with approval from your CWE Instructor. You must have a site approved by your CWE Instructor before Step 4.

Step 04

Complete CWE Application and Wait for Instructor Response

Once you have a CWE site, complete the CWE Application. Your instructor will respond with approval to register.

Step 05


Register for the CWE course and seminar.
Note: All CWE courses have a required co-requisite course, CWE Seminar (CWE-281). You must complete this course during the term(s) you are enrolled in CWE.

Step 06

Complete Paperwork and Begin Work

Get signatures on required forms and submit to your CWE Instructor. Download the Agreement, Learning Outcomes and Timesheet.

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
Ready to Get Started?