Wage subsidies for student co-ops creating more opportunities in biotech

OTTAWA, March 8, 2018 – 256 co-op students have begun new careers in the Canadian industry in 92 different biotech companies since September 2017 through the Government of Canada’s Student Work-Integrated Learning Program, launched by BioTalent Canada. The program provides first hand experience and enhances job-readiness of post-secondary STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) and business students across Canada by offering up to $7,000 in co-op wage subsidies to bio-economy employers.

“Co-op programs and work-integrated learning in general have long been a valuable part of post-secondary education,” says Rob Henderson, President and CEO of BioTalent Canada. “Smaller companies, like those in biotech, are often hesitant to invest in hiring students with little or no experience. Our program assists companies with wages and builds better connections for those companies with academia. We are already seeing the positive impact of the program and are excited to see it grow.”

Program participants have been enthusiastic in welcoming the new program. “We were able to complete a significant amount of market intelligence that would otherwise be difficult to accomplish with our current human resource constraints,” says Eric Zimmerman Cofounder & CEO, Perioperative Nutrition, Enhanced Medical Nutrition.

Successes will be further highlighted in BioTalent Canada’s next labour market information report – “Mapping the Potential”- to be released in March.

The Student Work-Integrated Learning Program provides $6 million in wage subsidies over four years for 1,000 co-op placements, helping students gain work experience in Canadian biotech companies. The initiative is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Student Work-Integrated Learning Program.

Applications are now being accepted for new placements for the rest of 2018. Employers interested in accessing wage subsidies through the program are encouraged to call BioTalent Canada at 1-866-243-2472 or visit biotalent.ca/Co-opFunds.


About BioTalent Canada
BioTalent Canada is the HR partner of Canada’s bio-economy. As an HR expert and national non-profit organization, BioTalent Canada focuses on building partnerships and skills for Canada’s bio-economy to ensure the industry has access to job-ready people. Through projects, research, and product development, BioTalent Canada connects employers with job seekers, delivers human resource information, and skills development tools so the industry can focus on strengthening Canada’s biotech business. For more information, please visit biotalent.ca.

Media inquiries:
Siobhan Williams
Director, Marketing and Communications
BioTalent Canada
613-235-1402 ext. 229
[email protected]