The certificate is credit-based, involving 15 credits of coursework and an approved 6-credit field-based research internship with, or related to, a cooperative enterprise. Students gain experience in doing applied economic research in the context of collaboration with faculty, other students, and owner/managers of cooperative firms.
A cooperative is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise. Learn more about co-ops at the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) website: ica.coop
The certificate is open to undergraduate students matriculated at UMass Amherst.
The 15-credit requirement for coursework can be met by a combination of 3- or 4-credit courses. Students also need to complete an approved 6-credit field-based research internship. Organizations that students have worked with include the following:
Green Fields Market: franklincommunity.coop
Pedal People: pedalpeople.coop
Valley Alliance of Worker Cooperatives: valleyworker.org
Valley Green Feast: valleygreenfeast.coop
Internships are completed during the summer and students meet twice per month with faculty supervisors and other students to discuss their research. Students present their research results at a mini-conference in late August to which members of the Valley Alliance of Worker Cooperatives and the general public are invited.
View a checklist of the certificate requirements (PDF)
Valerie Voorheis, Senior Lecturer
Department of Economics