BioSci Student Success Center

The Biological Sciences Co-Op program provides a yearlong immersive work experience for students in an industrial setting. Students receive customized training upon entering the program and receive staff and faculty mentoring throughout the year. Students describe their accomplishments and experience with a final presentation at the end of the program to the incoming cohort.

Entry into Program:

  • Co-op opportunities are promoted directly to Biological Sciences students.
  • Students take BILD 82 Job and Internship Preparation: Professional Development Skills in the Spring quarter, a course that prepares them for the co-op experience that begins in Summer. (The 2021-2022 cohort will not take BILD 82 in Spring 2021; instead, they will take a boot camp in June 2021.)



  • Students work full-time at partner company in Summer.
  • Students work 12-15 hours per week during Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters.
  • Oversight occurs at the end of each quarter, where the student meets with a faculty advisor and both student and company submit an online evaluation to monitor progress and address any issues that arise.


Completion of Program:

  • Students return as guest speakers to BILD 82 the following Spring quarter to give a final presentation about their co-op experience.
  • Students will describe their role at the company and lessons they learned from the experience.
  • Student presentations and company evaluations will provide feedback for improving the program the following year.  


Key Benefits of UC San Diego Biological Sciences Co-Op Program:

  • Industry: Company gains access to a talent pipeline of motivated and competitively trained biology students seeking work experience.
  • Students: Co-op students are provided with a more immersive work experience than a traditional internship. Co-op students are typically hired at a higher rate and salary than non-co-op students.
  • University: UC San Diego gains successful placement of students into competitive industry positions. University-Industry partnership provides information about top industry recruitment needs.