Ontario Supports Hands-on Training Opportunities for Postsecondary Students

Published on March 10, 2021

Thousands of paid internships will help build highly skilled workforce and prepare people for in-demand jobs

TORONTO — The Ontario government is providing $39.5 million to help Mitacs - an organization that builds partnerships between education and industry - create up to 8,000 paid innovative research internships and upskilling opportunities for postsecondary students, postdoctoral fellows and recent graduates. This investment will help build a highly skilled workforce and prepare Ontarians for the in-demand jobs of today and tomorrow.

"By increasing funding in work-integrated learning, we are preparing the next generation of talent with the experience they need to get good jobs after graduation," said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities. "We're also supporting employers, who are looking for students and graduates with real-world experience so they can make an immediate impact in the workforce."

Mitacs is a national non-profit organization that builds partnerships between education and industry to facilitate high-quality research internships in various fields, including law, technology, business, environment and health. Recently, at Ontario Tech University, interns worked on a project that conducted wastewater-based community testing to predict the local spread of COVID-19 and help with long-term planning for disease prevention. In another project, interns at Myant Inc. supported the development of reusable surgical masks and N95 respirators.

"While COVID-19 has changed the way we work today, our government is making sure people in Ontario are ready for the jobs of tomorrow," said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. "There are tens of thousands of well-paying, high-skilled jobs going unfilled across the province every day. This funding will help young people who are ready to roll up their sleeves and find their dream careers."

Investing in experiential learning opportunities for students and recent graduates is part of the government's plan to ensure it is building a skilled workforce that will help Ontario's economy recover from the effects of COVID-19.

"Mitacs is proud to partner with the Government of Ontario in support of students and business across the province," said Dr. John Hepburn, CEO and Scientific Director, Mitacs. "This significant investment will provide practical skills and job opportunities for postsecondary students, while helping businesses grow and commercialize their products and services. Together, thanks to Ministers Romano and McNaughton, we will work to connect students and businesses—and grow the provincial economy."


Quick Facts

  • Mitacs internships are paid learning placements that last four months and may be online, on-site or a combination of both.
  • The government has introduced a new, historic, ‘made-in-Ontario’ performance-based funding model that links a larger portion of provincial postsecondary operating funding to student and economic outcomes. Targets related to experiential learning are included in these metrics.
  • The Government of Ontario has funded Mitacs since 2007.
  • Funding for this project comes from the Canada-Ontario Workforce Development Agreement.

Additional Resources