In this innovative approach to career learning, students learn career skills in fields in which jobs are available locally. Although similar to cooperative education and internship programs, COCAL requires that students learn basic career skills at job sites without pay. Students learn from practicing professionals who follow competency guidelines prescribed by the College and based on O*NET online specifications, national competency catalogs, and employer input. Students combine collaborative career learning with 12‑18 credits of related college course work to earn a one‑year certificate in Individual Studies.
Students include dislocated workers, displaced homemakers, high school graduates interested in “hands‑on” learning and immediate employment, as well as students who are interested in career exploration prior to committing themselves to four years of college. The primary goal of COCAL is employment upon graduation. Enrollment is competitive. Students should contact the COCAL office for full details.