COOPERATIVE EDUCATION

Speare’s pioneering spirit was evidenced in his institution of the Co-operative Engineering School, the second cooperative education program in the United States. The program, based on the “earn while you learn” principle, was eventually adopted throughout Northeastern, providing technical training to young men unable to afford an education at established universities. Still in existence, the Northeastern Cooperative Plan allows students to combine their studies with relevant work experience.

 

 

Left: Early engineering co-op students at work in the manufacturing and testing of scientific instruments, ca. 1938. From the Northeastern University Photograph Collection.
Right: Students on an early mechanical engineering co-op, ca. 1938. From the Northeastern University Photograph Collection.

 

 

 

 

Left: Three early Northeastern students on an engineering co-op, calibrating precision condensers. ca. 1938. From the Northeastern University Photograph Collection.
Right: A letter from Rev. Lindsay of the Brookline Baptist Church, praising Speare's work on behalf of Northeastern University's cooperative education program. 1932. From the Frank Palmer Speare papers (M01).