Businesses can now apply for $7,500 student internship grants as part of the STEM4Digital Business Internship program designed to accelerate business engagement with the digital economy, Chief Minister Katy Gallagher announced today.
The STEM4Digital Business Internship program is a priority initiative of the Digital Canberra project and aims to enhance Canberra’s reputation as a ‘smart city’ by providing practical work experience in ACT businesses to second and third year tertiary students studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
“To accelerate the digital economy and stimulate business innovation in the ACT there is a need to attract and develop a workforce with strong STEM skills and knowledge,” the Chief Minister said.
“The STEM4Digital Business Internship program will enable students who are studying at a Canberra-based tertiary institution to gain hands-on experience in a professional workplace before they complete their studies.
“The program will give students the chance to undertake paid work for either 12-weeks full-time or 450 hours part-time in a field related to their area of study, with a local business that will offer career mentoring.
“It will also contribute to increasing the longer term STEM skill requirements of the ACT’s workforce and enable local businesses to take full advantage of the growing digital economy. I encourage businesses in the ACT who operate in a STEM field or have a need for STEM employees to apply,” the Chief Minister said.
As part of the STEM4Digital program, financial grants will be provided to ACT-based businesses to help cover the costs associated with hiring a student intern.
Successful business applicants will be awarded a funding grant of up to $7,500 to reimburse 75 per cent of the gross salary associated with offering a paid internship. Businesses will be responsible for paying the remaining 25 per cent of the student intern’s wages and other employment-related expenses.
It is expected that up to 24 businesses will be awarded grants for hiring a STEM student-intern over a two year period with the majority of internship placements in the first year likely to occur during the summer break of November 2014 to January 2015.
The business grants application process is open until Wednesday 20 August 2014. Interested businesses can find more information on the STEM4Digital Business Internship program at www.business.act.gov.au/grants-and-assistance/grants.
(Katy Gallagher Media Release)