Milwaukee Co-op Year

Exploratory First-Year Collegiate Experience

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Who is Co-op Year for?

Lakeland University is a pioneer in the region for granting college credit for paid professional experiences through its Cooperative Education program.

Now, LU has created a new pathway for Milwaukee-area students who cannot attend Lakeland due to distance or because they are still deciding whether to attend college or begin their career.

Lakeland's Co-op Year provides an innovative solution by giving students an exploratory first-year collegiate experience students.

Who is this program designed for?

  • I don't know exactly what I should do after graduating high school.
  • I'm not sure if I'm ready for college after COVID made my senior year a challenge.
  • I want to stay in Milwaukee to continue assisting my family.
  • I want to stay in Milwaukee to save on room and board costs of college.
  • I think I want to go to college, but I think I should work for a year to save up first.
  • I want to go to college, but I don't know how I'm going to pay for it.
  • I want to go to college, but I don't know what I should study.

Program Description

Students will take 100% tuition-funded courses at Lakeland's Milwaukee Center, located at 9000 W. Chester St. in Milwaukee, for their first year.

Lakeland will also help students find a good-paying part-time job at one of our area employer partners, a list that includes Usingers and Wisconsin Steel & Tube.

The Co-op Year will provide students with:

  • A 100% tuition-funded first year of college, along with tuition-funded pathways for a second, third, and fourth year
  • A collegiate experience that blends a good-paying part-time job that also earns you college credits through LU's Cooperative Education program, along with classwork designed to help you plan and get a start on a successful future.
    • Jobs and courses are cohorted, which means you'll have classmates to lean on and support.
    • LU provides coaching and placement assistance with part-time jobs.
    • Coursework is centered around your real-life experiences and situations.
    • Lakeland will provide transportation to the main campus to bring students to sporting events, concerts, plays, musicals and other student life programs.

After year one, students will have several pathways, and Lakeland will provide personal mentoring to help individual students develop the best plan for their future:

  • Earn a two-year or four-year degree from Lakeland in Milwaukee or on Lakeland's main campus.
  • Transfer to another college, including one of our Milwaukee technical college partners.
  • Continue into the workforce.

      Program Outcomes

      Successful completion of the Milwaukee Co-op Year will provide:

      • 28-31 college credits, which is equivalent to a full-time freshman year
        • Beyond the credits earned through Co-Op with your part-time job, additional general studies and elective coursework may include:
          • Interpersonal Communication
          • Composition I
          • Intro to Business Administration
          • College Success Seminar
          • Core I: Foundations of Critical Thinking
          • Quantitative Reasoning
      • At least 320 hours of part-time employment, with the ability to work 500+ over 9-12 months.
      • Development of an informed plan for your future (career, academic, and personal goals and action plans).

      How do I Enroll?

      1. Submit application for admission (fee free) –
        1. If you have previously been admitted to Lakeland, please use this form –
      2. Submit official high school transcript to Lakeland University
      3. Submit FAFSA to Lakeland – (School Code: 003854)

      How to learn more:

      If you have any questions, just contact Sam Poullette, Vice President for Enrollment Management:

      Sam Poullette, Vice President for Enrollment Management
      Office: 920-565-1022 ext. 2131
      Text: 920-476-1215

      Visit opportunities:

      Additional Information

      You might be wondering what your days might look like Monday - Friday.

      7:48 a.m. – 8:25 a.m. Take the 33 MTCS and arrive at the LU Milwaukee Center
      8:25 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Eat breakfast and prepare for class
      9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. Attend daily courses
      11:36 a.m. – 12:19 p.m. Take the 56 MTCS and arrive at your part-time employer
      12:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Work
      5:30 p.m. – 6:15 p.m. Return home

      Here are some important dates for the academic year:

      Fall semester begins Wednesday, September 1
      Bus trip to main campus for Homecoming (football game, tailgate, etc.) Saturday, September 18
      Last day of fall semester classes Friday, December 10
      Winter workshop begins Monday, December 13
      Holiday Break Saturday, December 25 – Sunday, January 2
      Winter workshop ends Friday, January 14
      Spring semester begins Tuesday, January 18
      Bus trip to main campus for Essence of Heritage (Black History Month celebration organized by students) February (TBD)
      Spring semester ends Friday, April 29
      *Additional campus event bus trips will be finalized at a later date