Toronto’s MaRS and the federal government are teaming up to provide students work experience at some of the country’s hottest technology companies.
MaRS Studio Y and Employment and Social Development Canada announced a new national job skills development program that will offer 400 post-secondary students four-month paid placements during the summer months at innovative ventures like Wealthsimple, ecobee, and Autodesk.
“This program offers a unique opportunity for young Canadians; hands-on experience at some of Toronto’s fastest growing technology companies and a chance to immerse themselves in startup culture,” said ecobee CEO Stuart Lombard. “ecobee is excited to support this initiative and help equip post-secondary students with new skills that will allow them to contribute to the future of Canada’s burgeoning tech sector.”
The program is called the Student Work-Integrated Learning Fellowships and will focus particularly on attracting students from underrepresented groups, including women in STEM fields, recent immigrants, indigenous youth and first-year students.
These fellowships will help create a talent pipeline for gender and racially diverse students to follow their interests in fields that are notoriously hard to gain access.
Participating students can also tap into Studio Y’s curriculum, a program that supports young entrepreneurs to develop both hands-on skills and the mindsets needed to succeed in the so-called innovation economy.
The national fellowships will focus on providing employment experiences in health, energy and the environment, finance and commerce, and the future of work and learning. But opportunities aren’t only reserved for engineers and software developers. Non-technical business roles in sales and marketing will be offered too.
Students can expect to leave the program with job-ready skills, and valuable connections to ventures in MaRS’ network.
“This program will build stronger partnerships between government, post-secondary
institutions and employers and will help young Canadians gain the experience they need
to get jobs that encourage them to become the innovative leaders of tomorrow,” said Kristy Duncan, the federal Minister of Science.
A host of companies have signed on to offer students work placements, including Top Hat, EventMobi, Nanoleaf, CoPower, Damvia, GreenMantra Technologies, Mirexus, Opalux, CleanSlate UV, and Hashtag Paid.