Two grant applications were funded in 2001 for the CEA/CEED Research Grant:
GRANT 1: Submitted by Dr. Lori Braunstein and Dr. Robert Lupton from Central Washington University. The title of the research is Cost Analysis of Cooperative Education: An Organizational Self-Analysis.
Research Abstract: A review of cooperative education literature reveals very few, if any, generalizable studies to determine the true employer costs of cooperative education programs. Having this knowledge would help employers determine break-even points, set and maintain goals for cost-effective co-op programs (if cost-effectiveness is a desired goal), and compare their organizational costs against other organizations’ costs. Knowing organizational costs of co-op programs might help colleges and universities recruit and retain quality employers. Additionally, the researchers can benefit in long-term, trend analysis of the data.
Conducting a traditional research study, limited in participants and generalizability to the co-op community, however, might not be the best solution. The development of an individualized, user-friendly self-assessment web tool is the key to this research proposal. Implementing an internet-based cyber calculator to help employers collect and analyze their costs will benefit employers, colleges and universities and the co-op profession.
GRANT 2: Submitted by Aminta Hawkins Breaux, Doctoral Candidate in Counseling Psychology at Temple University. Former Assistant Provost at Drexel University and currently Dean of Students at University of the Science in Philadelphia. The title of the research is "Impact of Participation in Cooperative Education on Career Indecision and Career Decision Making Self-efficacy for College Students."
Research Abstract: Cooperative education has been widely touted as a means to advance the career preparation of college students since the early 1900’s. Each year thousands of young college students enter co-op programs and expect that at the end of the academic experience they will have a clearer direction and possibly a job after graduation. However, each year there are students enrolled in co-op programs who do not meet with the same success as their counterparts.
This study will attempt to investigate the impact that participation in co-op has for college students just entering college and for those who have had a longer experience in the co-op program, including at least one work assignment.
The focus will be on two important aspects to the career development process, Career Indecision and Career Decision Making Self-Efficacy. The researcher will attempt to determine if participation in co-op will show a difference in the level of decideness from non-co-op participants. Also the researcher will attempt to determine whether co-op participants show a greater level of Career Decision Making Self-Efficacy. The latter is a construct that essentially looks at the confidence level in making career-related decisions. The theory holds that the greater the level of confidence one holds for making career-related decisions, the more apt that individual will be to engage in the subsequent behaviors and activities required in the career planning process. Both constructs are important to practitioners and prospective students who may be seeking the means to enhance career preparation and more systematically achieve career success.