Professional Development

The Department encourages all students to engage in professional development activities including professional etiquette workshops, interview workshops, taped mock interviews, resume workshops, employer presentations, industry speaker events, networking socials, recruiting events, etc.  These initiatives are largely sponsored and offered by the IEOR Department and/or the Columbia University Center for Career Education.

Center for Career Education

The Center for Career Education (CCE) serves the students of a number of Columbia University schools, including the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science.  The IEOR Department partners with CCE to deliver meaningful career development programs and recruiting initiatives.  All IEOR students should register with the CCE immediately upon arrival at their website.  Through the CCE website, you will gain access to various career related resources.
All IEOR students are expected to attend the CCE Overview Presentation offered during the start of the Summer and Fall terms.  This presentation provides an overview of the various services and support at CCE, in addition to an introduction to the on/off-campus recruiting system.

IEOR Resume Portfolios

The IEOR Department compiles resume portfolios of each graduate program to distribute to over 450 registered employers.  Many students have obtained full and part time employment through this initiative.  In order to participate, a student must participate in the following three workshops:

  1. Professional Etiquette Workshop
  2. Interview Workshop
  3. Resume Workshop

Students who have not successfully completed the three workshops above are not permitted to submit their resume to the IEOR Resume Portfolio.  Workshops are offered during the beginning of the Summer, Fall and Spring terms.


Students in the IEOR Department have often been attracted to engaging in part time internship opportunities during the academic year (and full time opportunities during the summer).  Scheduling permitting, students may work maximum of 20 hours per week during an academic term.

Internship & Industry Project for Academic Credit

IEOR graduate students may earn up to (3) three credits (letter grade) of IEOR E4999 Fieldwork towards the MS degree through internship engagement.  The student is responsible for the cost per credit, charged as regular tuition.

In order to commence, the student must adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. Students must complete one of the following Fieldwork Request Forms for Departmental Review:
  2. For Internships & CPT:  Obtain an employer letter.  The employer letter must have the following in order to be processed and it must follow the same formatting as this sample offer letter template
    • Be on official company letterhead
    • Have a specific start date and a specific end date
    • Include the complete street address where the work will be performed
    • Include the number of hours per week
    • Include a detailed description or list of position duties (should be related to the IEOR degree and it's applications)
    • Signed and dated by the employer 
    * The Department will not process the Fieldwork request if any of the above items are missing or if the letter is not in the correct format

    For Industry Projects:  Obtain project assigment approval from the IEOR Career Team on an industry project with an employer or alumni partner.
  3. Employment may not exceed 20 hours per week during the academic Fall or Spring semesters.  If the Summer semester is the last semester, summer employment can not be full-time and may not exceed 20 hours per week.
  4. Students enrolled in Fieldwork during their last term must registered for a minimum of 3 credits of on-campus coursework.
  5. Adhere to the following schedule and deadlines:
Semester Number of Credits Term Duration Minimum Hours of Work (Total) 2021 Deadline to Apply
Fall 1 Half or Full Term         100 First Friday of November
Fall 1.5 Half or Full Term         150 First Friday of October 
Spring 1 Half or Full Term         100 Friday, March 5
Spring 1.5 Half or Full Term         150 Friday, February 12
Summer 1, 1.5, or 2 Half or Full Term         100-200 Final date: Friday, July 9

This schedule also pertains to F-1 students requesting Curricular Practical Training during the academic terms.  J-1 students may submit their application for Fieldwork if they wish to obtain academic credits after obtaining approval from the J-1 Sponsor and ISSO.  Please refer to SSOL for work eligibility: F-1 Students | J-1 Students.
Students may also engage in unpaid internships and volunteering.  For more information, students should consult with their Career Placement Officer and ISSO.

In order to earn a grade for the internship performed, the Department requires: 

  1. The employer must submit an IEOR Supervisor Internship Evaluation Report, stating your responsibilities, performance, time frame, and number of hours worked.
  1. The student must submit an IEOR Student Internship Report, elaborating on the experience, projects, and relevance to degree program.

The letter and report must be received by the IEOR office by the following deadlines (failure to comply may result in incomplete or failure in the course.):



Maximum Number of Credits

Deadline to Submit Letter and Report



Last day of class in December



Last day of class in May



Second week of August

*If the employer does not allow for any written reports or evaluations to be submitted, students may submit an exemption request for the Department's consideration at the start of the Fieldwork internship.