We’re approaching the end of the school year and there will be eager and qualified talent looking for opportunities to grow their skills and experience while making a significant contribution to your small and startup business.
Enter the BC Innovation Council’s BC Tech Co-op Grants Program!
There is nothing like on-the job training to jumpstart a student’s career! And there’s nothing like fresh talent and an enthusiastic attitude to help improve a small business’s bottom line. But for small and startup businesses, finding the budget to add staff can be a challenge, and for students, finding on the job training that pays can be rare.
BC Tech Grants provide funding of up to $10,800 per year to help alleviate both the challenges facing small businesses, as well as those facing students ready to transition from academic to professional life.
BCIC’s Director of Programs, Dawn Wood, says since its inception in 2015 there has been a strong demand for co-op students, with numbers trending upward – by the beginning of 2018 the program has seen over a thousand students successfully placed with small businesses in BC.
“It gives [businesses] immediate access to bright, innovative, talented students who are eager to work, eager to learn, and in the long-run for the Province of British Columbia’s tech companies, this means students will be graduating with on-the job training,” Wood said.
Wood added that non-tech companies can also hire through the program– as long as it’s for a tech role within the organization.
“Very often, we find that it’s a non-tech company that’s trying to build a platform or create a new database or automate systems that were analog prior,” she said.
Rob Clifford is the co-founder of Calico Logic, a Vancouver- based software development company that specializes in developing customized Android and iOS applications for a range of clients, from start-ups to enterprise level.
Calico has used the grant the six times, with three students currently working – taking on tasks that existing staff simply don’t have time for.
“It’s helped us grow – we bring them in as part of a team, and task them with anything we would a full-time employee,” Clifford said.
Are you eligible?
Eligible employers must:
- Be established in BC.
- Have less than 100 employees on payroll.
- Be either:
- Tech companies hiring for any role
- Non-tech companies, organizations or non-profits hiring for a tech role
- A tech role is defined as a role primarily related to developing tech or providing tech support.
- Be hiring a student for a co-op work term. If you’ve hired a student for a co-op work term in the last 5 years, then you must hire a first-time co-op student.
Apply in three easy steps!
There are three steps to apply for a grant:
- Define the role and create a job posting.
- Contact an accredited co-op department in BC to have the job approved and posted. Check with the co-op department to ensure the program is accredited. Want to post your job through more than one school? Post through the BC Association for Co-operative Education portal (your job post still needs to be approved by each co-op department).
- Submit your BC Tech Co-op Grant application.
Click HERE to find out more!