Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is recognized as a world-class research institution with over 175 years of excellence in education and is widely recognized for the effectiveness of its hands-on approach to undergraduate education. Rensselaer’s classrooms are a model for intellectual engagement and the interaction of students and faculty. In both curriculum reform and creative use of new teaching techniques and technologies, Rensselaer’s leadership in interactive learning has helped to further transform the way we teach and learn.

We welcome participation from all employers — from large Fortune 500 employers to entrepreneurs, medium-sized employers, and small start-up ventures. Each year hundreds of employers visit campus to interview our students for full-time, co-op, summer jobs and internships. Annually, over 150 employers attend the CCPD Spring Career Fair, held in early February. Below is the guide to recruiting at Rensselaer this will help you determine timelines/options for recruiting Rensselaer students. Complete this form and our Employer Relations Team will be in touch to discuss your recruitment needs! Please allow 24-48 hours for a response.


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Spring 2021 Career Fair - Date Announced!

The CCPD Spring 2021 Virtual Career Fair is designed to allow employers to meet virtually with students in group and/or 1 on 1 prescheduled sessions. This Fair will be held on Wednesday, February 10th, 11:00 am - 4:00 pm EST and is open to all majors. There are no charges/fees to participate and takes place in Handshake Virtual Fairs

Click HERE to register in Handshake

The DEADLINE to Register and Create Representative Schedules is: Wednesday, January 20th

If you have any questions or would like to be added to our communications list for a reminder, please email Evan at: younge6@rpi.edu

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The Arch at Rensselaer

To make our undergraduate educational experience even more robust and transformative, we have freed it from the traditional academic calendar.

Summer Here
During The Arch, students remain on campus for the summer after their sophomore year, taking junior-level classes, and receive focused attention from professors at this pivotal point in their academic progression. 

The World Away
Then, students leave the Troy campus for a semester during the traditional junior year—either fall or spring—to pursue their passions in the form of co-ops, internships, civic engagement, research, or international experiences. Students who pursue these opportunities during their academic career are better prepared for future professional careers and graduate school.

Graduate in Four Years
With the exception of students in the five-year bachelor of architecture program, matriculation to degree completion is not intended to take more than eight terms. .

Academic Semester Experience

Freshman Required Required Optional
Sophmore Required Required Required
Junior * * Optional
Senior Required Required Graduate

*Option for an "away" semester

Architecture Students

Freshman Required Required Optional
Sophmore Required Required Optional
Junior Required Required Required
Senior * * Optional
5th Year Required Required Graduate

*Option for an "away" semester


Cooperative Education Program

If you have short-term projects and would like to bring pre-professionals into your organization that you can evaluate for later full-time employment, you should consider our Cooperative Education Program (Co-op). Rensselaer operates a comprehensive Co-op Program that is centralized in the Center for Career and Professional Development. 

Students from all disciplines may participate in the program; however, graduate students must first obtain permission from their faculty advisor. Undergraduate co-op students are required to work a minimum of two terms, one of which must be a semester. Normally, these terms are scheduled consecutively, from January to August or June to December.

Because many co-op students graduate a semester late, it is not uncommon for co-ops to work an additional term, usually a summer. In two majors, Chemical and Environmental Engineering, some students may find it necessary to work three terms consecutively (January to December) because of the scheduling of courses. Graduate students have the option of working one term (summer or semester) or more up to one calendar year.

If you have questions regarding Co-op or would like more information, please contact Dawn Cairns-Weaver, Director of the program, by calling (518) 276-6234 or via e-mail.

Recruitment Schedule

Recruit in the Fall for Spring/Summer opportunities and recruit in the Spring for Summer/Fall opportunities. Please visit the Rensselaer Academic Calendar for campus closures, student and staff holidays and class schedules.


  • Late Summer: Companies who want to interview on campus sign up through JobLink
  • August/Ongoing: “Open Job Postings” can be set up on JobLink for employers unable to interview on campus
  • September - October: Campus interviews for co-op
  • Late October: Employers may begin extending job offers directly to Rensselaer students on this date and through the end of December
    • Honor this schedule and do not extend offers before our recruiting process has concluded.
    • Allow students a reasonable amount of time to make their decisions.
  • January 1 of the next year: Students available for spring co-op assignments


  • Late Fall: Companies who want to interview on campus sign up through JobLink
  • December/Ongoing: “Open Job Postings” can be set up on JobLink for employers unable to interview on campus
  • First Wednesday in February: CCPD Spring Career Fair
  • February – March: Campus interviews for co-op
  • Mid-March: Employers may begin extending job offers directly to Rensselaer students on this date and through the end of May
    • Honor this schedule and do not extend offers before our recruiting process has concluded
    • Allow students a reasonable amount of time to make their decisions.
  • After the last final exam day: Students available for summer co-op assignments
  • August: Students available for fall co-op assignments.

Graduate students have restrictions on their start and end date, depending on their responsibilities as a TA and/or RA.  We encourage students to check with the CCPD before accepting a co-op or internship position.

Student Process

Once students have an official offer, they must:

  • Forward a copy of official offer letter and your resume to co-op@rpi.edu
  • Attend a required co-op briefing – dates are listed in JobLink under “Events” and then under “Workshops”

For students to maintain their student status, they must register their co-op with the CCPD. The offer letter provided to the student must be on company letterhead or from an official company email and must contain:

  • Start date and end date
  • Your rate of pay
  • Description of the work you will be doing

The detailed information regarding the Co-op program from the student perspective can be found in our Co-op Guide.

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Handshake is our online recruiting and career management system, tailored for Rensselaer students and alumni!

Create a Handshake Account
1. Create an account here (or log in with an existing account)

2. Click the Sign Up button and enter your the necessary information (must use organization email address) 

3. A confirmation email will be sent to you, follow the steps to activate your new account

4. Don't forget to connect with RPI!

*Please note that we will not accept connection requests made by 3rd parties or search firms*

Job Posting Policy

Regarding new Handshake account requests, the CCPD reserves the right to deny access to any employer who refuses to comply with our requirements for setting up a new account.  Please ensure that all required information is entered accurately and thoroughly. Incomplete records and requests for new employer accounts may not be approved. These requirements include: submitting a valid full first and last contact name, a valid phone number, a valid employer web address and a valid email address for that employer (not a generic email).

CCPD services available for approved employers may include:

  • Post Open Jobs 
  • Request Information Sessions
  • Request On-Campus Interview dates and participate in On-Campus Recruiting
  • Register for the CCPD Spring Career Fair and other events




Recruit at Rensselaer

Interested in recruiting at Rensselaer? Looking to expand your already existing relationship? The Center for Career and Professional Development strives to engage and build partnerships with employers by creating a campus presence for their organization, marketing their employment opportunities to Rensselaer students, and fulfilling their recruitment needs. We invite you to explore the variety of ways to get to know our students below. Complete this form and our Employer Relations Team will be in touch! Please allow 24-48 hours for a response.

Networking Industry Event Series

We are proud to present our Fall 2020 Virtual Industry Networking event series! These events are designed to allow recruiters to be more targeted in approach through major/industry pairing. These events will be hosted in Handshake Virtual Fairs and there are no charges/fees to participate! All events will run through Handshake virtual fairs and will include both group sessions and 1 on 1 video chat sessions.


If you or others from your organization are interested in attending to recruit current students, please fill out the interest survey:



** Please note this survey's purpose is to collect your interests and does not register you for any of these events. We will follow up with you when it's time to register in Handshake**



ENGINEERING Industry Networking Event –



COMPUTER & TECHNOLOGY Industry Networking Event –



BUSINESS, HUMANITIES, & ARTS Industry Networking Event –

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27 - 5:30PM - 7:30PM


SCIENCE & ENVIRONMENTAL Industry Networking Event –



END OF THE YEAR Industry Networking Event – ALL MAJORS –



Employer Partnerships

Sponsor career-related events at Rensselaer to engage and interact with students while building corporate awareness. The goal is to navigate students through a series of career development workshops to identify talent early, build a pipeline of candidates, and to make informed hiring decisions.

Industry Panels

Interact with students on campus by providing industry insight as a panelist, moderator, or lecturer in your industry of expertise.

Information Sessions

Provide targeted information to students about your organization, job opportunities, career paths, and steps to apply. Rensselaer offers on-site facilities to host these events, free of charge. Reserve your date through your JobLink account; rooms will be assigned based on campus availability but please note, some rooms may incur an AV charge.

If you are interested in having your event catered, please visit RPI Sodexo's Online Catering Menu.

On-Campus Recruiting

The Center for Career and Professional Development at Rensselaer provides several services through which you can attract and hire students to meet your employment needs. At Rensselaer, on-campus interviews take place in both the fall and spring semesters and for employers seeking to hire full-time, co-op and summer interns. Though On-Campus interviews are typically scheduled during a defined recruiting period, we can also work to accommodate special interviewing requests that do not coincide with our traditional recruiting schedule.

Rensselaer's classes are conducted on a semester calendar, therefore, students seeking full-time employment are available after graduation in May, August or December. Candidates may be recruited from a wide variety of technically oriented disciplines from the Schools of Architecture, Business, Engineering, Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, Science and our Information Technology Program.  Students seeking co-op, summer jobs and internships will also be available for fall and spring interviews.

Request an On-Campus Recruiting Date: Log to your Handshakeaccount and select “Create a New Schedule Request.” We will confirm your request or follow up with you to discuss alternatives. 

Attach/Create a Position (Job Description). Log-in to your Handshake account and from your dashboard locate “alerts.” There you will see if you have schedules in need of positions. We encourage posting these positions in August for Fall Recruitment and January for Spring Recruitment. *NOTE: To ensure ample time for resume submission, we recommend that you complete the online job posting process through Handshake as early as possible. The earlier your schedules are viewable to students, the greater your chances are for maximum response from qualified and interested candidates.

Select and Invite Candidates for Interviews. Log-in to your Handshake account and from your dashboard locate “On-Campus Interviews.” There you will be able to review what is happening with your active schedules. You will be able to see what action you need to take including how many students are awaiting review for your OCR positions. In addition, you can see if sign-ups have begun on your schedules.  From the OCR tab at the top of the page, select the “Applicants” tab to view the list of students who have applied for your position. Using the drop-down menu in the Status column, you may select any of the following options for each student: not invited, invited or alternate. 


Review resumes of over 600 students prior to our on-campus career fairs–an excellent opportunity to personally, engage with a large population of Rensselaer students.

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Freshman Career Compass and Sophomore Career Experience 

Freshman Career Compass (FCC) and Sophomore Career Experience (SCE) is a series of employer-sponsored events at Rensselaer designed to assist freshmen and sophomores with career development skills to gain a competitive edge when searching
for experiential learning opportunities (co-ops and internships).

Freshman Career Compass Goals
Freshman Year: Focus on Self-Awareness

  • Comprehension of major
  • Developing oral/written communication skills
  • Identifying professional skills

Sophomore Career Experience Goals
Sophomore Year: Expand Career Awareness

  • Problem-solving and teamwork skills
  • Recognizing areas of opportunities
  • Engaging with experts

Sponsorship Benefits

  • Branding and Marketing Your Company
    • Name Recognition: Your company will be featured on the CCPD website, Career and Professional Development Guide, and Freshman Career Compass and Sophomore Career Experience marketing materials.
  • Early Identification and Student Interaction
    • Gain early access to a talented pool of freshman and sophomore students to advance your organization's campus presence.
  • Partnership with the Center for Career and Professional Development (CCPD) 
    • Built on collaborative working relationships with our sponsors, we work together to develop a customized recruitment plan based on their hiring goals.

Sponsorship Commitment
The CCPD hosts six events per year for each cohort. We will consult with you to plan a sponsorship event that will help you build a pipeline of opportunities to fulfill your internship, co-op, and full-time hiring needs.