Selecting company partners

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Best practices for selecting and screening projects for your course.

Selecting and screening employer projects


Choosing projects for your class can be both exciting and challenging. As you request projects in our library as well as receive requests from companies, you will no doubt want to ensure that projects are a good fit for your curriculum.

To help ensure that your projects offer meaningful learning opportunities for your students, here is a checklist of actions for you to take when requesting and accepting projects for your course: 

  1. Review the company’s profile. While project pages contain a short description about the company, reviewing a company’s profile can provide you with more context that otherwise wouldn’t be available by just reading the project. To go to a company’s profile, click on the company name or logo in the top-left corner of any project page. Here, you’ll find details about the organization, as well as a link to their website.

  2. Read feedback provided by students. Companies who have previously completed projects through Riipen will often have reviews completed by students that they collaborated with. To read the feedback for any company, go to their profile and click on the “Feedback” tab on the left-hand menu. For example, you can click here to read reviews written about Riipen!

  3. Have an open discussion over the phone. Whether you are reaching out to the company or vice versa, you should always have a phone or web conference call before the project is approved to move forward. This provides you both with an opportunity to make sure the collaboration is a good fit before moving forward.

    Below is a checklist of questions you can ask on your call with the employer.
    Your curriculum may have particular needs that aren’t covered here, so feel free to edit the list as needed!

  1. What are the objectives and final deliverables that the company wants to achieve through this project? To what extent are both sides flexible to scope changes? 
  2. Given your curriculum needs, what type of project scope would be the most mutually beneficial? 
  3. What communication methods would you, the company, and your students prefer? Would you like to be kept copied in all communication with the students? Will you be using the Riipen platform? 
  4. What is the timeline for the project, as well as the expected time commitment from students, the company, and yourself?  
  5. Will there be any paperwork that needs to be signed by students before the project can begin, like an NDA?

If you’re both satisfied with the answers to these questions, you can mutually agree to move forward with the project, and the recipient of the request on Riipen can accept it. You might also want to consider keeping notes from your call that you can share with your students when the semester begins. If you discuss any changes on the call, you may want to ask the employer to update the project page based on your conversation - they can add to the project details, attach resources, upload media, and add new administrators as needed.

Reviewing the above items will help you set manageable expectations with the industry partner and set up your students with the opportunity to succeed. If you have any questions in the process, please feel free to reach out to our team via the Help Center!

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