Shook’s robust Co-Op program dates more than 40 years and offers students the opportunity to join leaders of all levels that got their start as a Co-Op at Shook, including our President & CEO Chris Halapy. In fact, Chris is our fifth consecutive CEO to start as a Co-Op or immediately after college. The program incorporates training, mentorship, and a breadth of construction experience both on-site and in the office to expose the students to real-world situations.
Shook has Co-Ops across the states of Ohio, North Carolina, and Indiana from a range of majors, including construction management, civil, mechanical and environmental engineering, and marketing, to name a few. We have worked with students from numerous different colleges and universities to provide mentorship for their future careers. Each Co-Op is assigned a mentor to help guide their path, answer questions, and make sure their goals for the term are met.
Throughout their term, our Co-Ops tour various construction sites together to gain exposure to different market channels and phases of construction. From water and wastewater treatment plants to new schools, students are introduced to the similarities and differences across market channels to help form their career path and have a better understanding of Shook’s multitude of work across the company. Additionally, it offers them a chance to build camaraderie amongst their peers and allows our newer Co-Ops to interact and learn from our tenured Co-Ops.
Co-Ops are also encouraged to partake in Shook’s rich culture. From volunteering with their project teams to further our Mission, To Dramatically Improve the Communities We Serve, and attending social outings with their local office or market channels, our Co-Ops are a valued part of our team and considered part of our Shook family from their first day.
At the end of each term, our Co-Ops complete exit interviews with their mentor and Co-Op coordinator to help us learn and continue to improve the quality of our Co-Op program. In August 2019, one of our outgoing Co-Ops suggested it would be beneficial to have an opportunity to improve their presentation skills and share their Co-Op experiences with the company. Our team recognized the value in this suggestion as a great networking experience for our Co-Ops and an opportunity for our Shook teammates to learn more about our various Co-Ops and projects. Today, the Look Back, Look Ahead: Co-Op Presentations are a company-wide event at the end of each term. Each student has approximately 5-10 minutes to share their experience on their project and present their learnings to the company.
Shook recognizes that our Co-Ops are productive members of the team and have brought incredible value to our projects over the years. Their talent, fresh perspectives, and desire to learn and grow the business have helped Shook achieve growth. Our Co-Op program has been key to bolstering our recruitment efforts and adding sustained talent to our team full-time.