Mitacs Enterprise is a competitively awarded 6-month internship for graduates of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines working with small to medium-sized companies (SMEs) operating in STEM sectors throughout Southern Ontario who, in conjunction with Mitacs, will mentor interns in business skills.
Mitacs will facilitate matching qualifying participants (interns) with SMEs, provide business and management training, facilitate a peer support network, monitor progress, encourage skill and knowledge transfer to the SME, and ensure mentorship in SME business processes and entrepreneurship. Simultaneously, the SME will obtain access to a highly-talented, motivated and well trained individual who can help meet their business demands while giving them an excellent opportunity to evaluate a potential future employee.
Eligible SMEs must operate in a STEM related sector and:
- Have fewer than 1,000 employees;
- Have operations in Southern Ontario which can host an intern.
- Is a for-profit company
Eligible interns must be current or recent graduates of STEM discipline and:
- Not have previously participated in the Mitacs Enterprise internship program;
- Be an Ontario resident eligible to work in Ontario for the duration of the internship; and
- Not currently be employed or take on other employment during the internship.
Mitacs Enterprise has two internship tracks depending on the intern targeted:
- Interns holding a Bachelor’s, Master’s or Doctorate from an accredited degree granting college or university and obtained within five years of the start of the internship are eligible for a full-time Enterprise internship.
- Interns enrolled in a graduate program from an accredited university while undertaking their internship are eligible for a part-time internship.
Step One: Establish Eligibility
- Interested SMEs will complete an on-line form to establish their eligibility. The firm is asked to upload financial statements to verify funds for the firm’s share of the intern stipend.
- Interested interns will complete an on-line form to establish their eligibility. This will include their CV, a support letter and most recent transcript.
Step Two: Submit the Enterprise internship proposal
An eligible SME will complete an Internship Proposal consisting of:
- A work plan outlining the interns responsibilities within the firm;
- A mentorship plan outlining the SME’s plan to provide the intern with business mentorship.
Mitacs will adjudicate the internship proposal within 4 weeks of submission. Note that Enterprise is a competitive program and not all applications may be approved.
Step Three: The Contribution Agreement
The Mitacs Contribution Agreement will be signed by both the SME and the intern (of an approved Internship Proposal). The signed agreement and a copy of the intern’s Job Offer will be forwarded to Mitacs. An award letter is produced upon receipt and the payment schedule is started.
Internship Payment Schedule:
Once the Contribution Agreement is signed, Mitacs’ portion of the funding will be paid in accordance with the following schedule:
- Initial Payment – The first 3 months of Mitacs’ portion of the funding will be paid upon receipt of the signed Contribution Agreement and a copy of the Job Offer letter.
- Final Payment – The remaining 3 months of Mitacs’ portion of the funds will be paid upon receipt of proof of payment of salary to the intern for the 6 month period and completion of the final report.
Interns will participate in a business skills training program as part of their internship. This consists of:
- One-day business orientation before the internship starts to facilitate a successful experience. Subjects taught include business etiquette, dining etiquette, presentation and networking skills.
- Two-day Boot camp during the internship begins focused on project management. All participants will receive certification in Project Management fundamentals that they can use towards their Project Management designation.
Matching Interns with Firms
Mitacs provides a matching service for approved SMEs and interns:
- Eligible firms seeking an intern should contact Mitacs with details about the proposed internship plan. Mitacs will advertise the opportunity and forward a list of potential interns. The firm and intern are responsible for ensuring there is a good match.
- Eligible interns seeking a placement should visit the Mitacs Enterprise opportunities page and forward their interest in specific placements to Mitacs.
Funding & Status
Mitacs Enterprise award values are set as follows:
- $30,000 for recent or current eligible Master’s and Doctoral graduates who are undertaking a full-time internship
- $20,000 for recent eligible Bachelor and college graduates undertaking a full-time internship
- $15,000 for current eligible Masters and Doctorate students undertaking a part-time internship. A part-time internship is considered to be the equivalent of 50% of a full-time position
Mitacs Enterprise will only fund up to a maximum of 50% of the award values above with the SME partner responsible for the balance. The SME may choose to increase their portion of the award, however Mitacs will not fund increases beyond the stated amount. Awards will be in the form of a salary to the Intern paid by the SME. The SME is also responsible for remitting any government mandated deductions and, at their option, supplementary benefits or salary. Note that the SME’s share of the award is a cash contribution. While Mitacs encourages in-kind contributions towards the internship, these cannot be used towards the stipend amounts.
The Internship Proposal
The Internship proposal is prepared and submitted by the SME and intern. It will include:
- A work plan for the Intern specifying Intern responsibilities, deliverables, conditions of work, etc;
- A mentoring plan showcasing the firm’s commitment to mentor the intern in business and entrepreneurship skills;
- Details of how the work will assist the intern to enter the workforce;
- Benefit of the internship to the SME;
- Any in-kind support by the firm towards the internship;
- A completed Conflict of Interest and Environmental Impact declaration (if applicable)
The work plan will include (but is not limited to):
- The interns supervisor and the extent of supervision provided;
- Projects where the intern will be involved;
- Departments with which the intern will have significant interaction;
- Key individuals (name, title, department) who will supervise the intern’s work.
The mentorship plan will include (but is not limited to):
- Key individuals assigned to mentor the intern in business and entrepreneurship skills, provide guidance and direction, and answer any questions that may arise;
- The extent of any training (business or technical) that will be made available during the course of the internship; and
- The extent of interaction across departments, and potential for involving the intern in new projects of interest to the intern.
Cross-linkages between the work plan and mentorship plan, where possible, are encouraged. For example, the work plan may involve multiple departments (Research, marketing, operations, finance, HR, etc) so the intern better understanding various departmental roles and their interplay.
Mitacs will base its approval of internship plans on the quality of the mentoring and internship plan and its potential for benefit to the intern and the SME.
Internship Plan Review & Approval
Approval of internship plans is the responsibility of the Mitacs Enterprise Selection Committee (MESC) chaired by the Mitacs Associate Scientific Director. Approval will be based on:
- Quality of the plan:
- Types of activities in which the intern will participate
- Skill areas for development
- Investment by the SME (time of personnel, in-kind support, etc) into the internship
- The extent of match of the intern skills to those of the SME
- Fit between the intern and company (experience, matching skills, etc)
- Excellence of the intern as indicated by the transcripts and the support letter
Mitacs will communicate its decision to the firm and Intern within 6 weeks of application.
Any intellectual property (IP) developed during the internship will belong to the SME who has sponsored the Intern.
Frequently Asked enterprise Questions
Broadly, prospective interns must be graduates of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) disciplines and he/she must have graduated no more than five (5) years from his/her STEM program. Interns may also be current graduate students (Masters and Doctoral levels). Interns cannot be current employees of the company or hold current employment with another company. Interns may have previous FT employment, but cannot be currently employed.
No. You are welcome to apply, regardless of whether or not you have a company partner. Once you have been accepted into the program, you will be requested to view the current internship opportunities and select your top three choices. If there aren’t any opportunities which suit you, we will keep your application on file until a suitable match can be made.
No. Your company is welcome to apply, regardless of whether or not you have an intern identified. Once you have been pre-qualified, we will post your proposed intern job title and description on our website. Potential interns will be requested to visit the site and apply to their top three choices. You will receive notification of which interns have applied and will be asked to select candidates for interviews.
A company may hold more than one internship at a time, but spots will be limited.