A student standing in front of a sign at his internship.

Co-op Cost and Compensation Considerations


Financial Aid

  • Students must be registered at least half time (6 credits undergraduate, including the co-op credits) in order to receive most types of financial aid
  • Federal Title IV programs such as Pell, Stafford Loans, Perkins Loans and FSEOG may be adjusted if you are registered less than full-time
  • State grant funding (TAG, EOF, etc.) is based on full-time (12 credits) enrollment
  • Enrollment in less than six credits during a semester would place you in “less than half-time status” for loan deferment purposes; this begins your grace period and then repayment of prior loans
  • Any salary you earn during a co-op/internship is excluded from income on the subsequent year FAFSA

Health Insurance

New Jersey law requires all full-time students to have medical insurance, either under their family health plan or an individual plan. Your enrollment at Montclair State University may be terminated if you do not comply. Although Co-op interns work off-campus, they still are enrolled in an academic course and remain bound by this policy.

Taxes and Worker’s Compensation

Tax matters can be complex and must always be handled on an individ­ual basis between each student and the Internal Revenue Service. Therefore, you should not consider the information given here to be an official inter­pretation of your personal tax obligations.

The general rule regarding taxability of salaries paid to Co-op students under Internal Revenue Code Section 61 (1).states in part that “gross income”, means all income from whatever source derived. Exceptions to this role may be scholarships or fellowship grants. In cases where an employer-employee relationships exists, amounts received as wages salaries or other compensation are included in gross income Under IRC Section 61 (a).

In general, then, the compensation that Co-op students receive is fully taxable. The employer is required to deduct Worker’s Compensation, FICA, Federal Withholding Tax and New Jersey State Income Tax from Co-op stu­dent’s salaries.

Unemployment Compensation

Because students maintain their student status while enrolled in Cooperative Education, the time during an internship does not count toward time accumulated for collecting unemployment benefits.