I’m interested in doing an internship. Can Mitacs help me find a partner organization?

Mitacs cannot find partners for individual interns.

For tips on finding a partner organization, view the Research Partnerships 101 webinar, talk to your academic supervisor, or visit the Projects Seeking Interns page. 

What kinds of organizations can participate in Accelerate?

For-profit corporations, including eligible intern-owned start-ups based at approved incubators, and eligible not-for-profit (NFP) corporations can participate. Projects with an NFP partner must demonstrate an economic or productivity orientation, which must be described in the proposal and will be evaluated by the peer reviewers.

Partners in Canada and abroad must have an office or site where the intern(s) undertakes at least 50% of the internship.

If you’re not sure if a partner is eligible, contact a Mitacs representative or accelerate(at)mitacs.ca.

Which incubators are eligible hosts for internships under the Accelerate Entrepreneur initiative?

The Accelerate Entrepreneur initiative provides the opportunity for graduate students or postdoctoral fellows to do internships in their own start-up company if the company is housed in an eligible incubator. Please contact accelerate@mitacs.ca to determine the eligibility of a specific incubator and associated start-up(s). 

When can I start my Accelerate internship?

Provided you have grad student or postdoc status at your university, or full-time student status at your college, you can start an internship at any point in your academic program. You must maintain that status throughout your internship.

Please read the Mitacs Accelerate project start and end dates policy.

How many internships can I do?

The maximum allowable number of internships varies depending on your current academic designation:

  • College students can complete up to three internship units
  • Master’s students can complete up to four internship units
  • PhD students can complete up to eight internships
  • Postdoctoral fellows can complete up to nine internships

Graduate students seeking longer-term funding can also apply for Accelerate Fellowship funding, in which:

  • Master’s students can complete an 18 or 24-month project 
  • PhD students can complete a three or four-year project 

Applicants can apply for Accelerate and Accelerate Fellowship funding at any time.

Can I hold both an Accelerate and other grants at the same time?

Mitacs does not have any restrictions on its recipients holding other grants.

You are responsible to determine if your other grants have such restrictions prior to applying to Accelerate.

Can I complete my internship at the academic institution and interact with the partner organization remotely?

Interns are required to spend at least 50% of their internship on site with the partner organization.

In exceptional circumstances, interns may spend less than half of the internship with their partner. Consult with your Mitacs representative to determine if your project is eligible.

Can I do an Accelerate internship outside of Canada?

Yes, Accelerate supports internships based in Canada and around the world, provided those internships include at least one intern travelling to or from Canada, university, or partner organization that is based in Canada.

Who owns any intellectual property generated during an internship?

Mitacs takes no position on intellectual property (IP). 

IP is to be shared between the academic institution, its researchers, and the partner organization according to the academic institution's IP rules, unless a separate agreement is negotiated.

Mitacs can facilitate IP discussions with any Canadian academic institution. The following universities have their own IP policies for Mitacs projects:

My Accelerate internship has been approved. When will the funds be available?

Mitacs forwards Accelerate funds to your academic institution only after it has received the contribution from your partner organization. Please allow two weeks for processing upon receipt of this contribution. 

Interns travelling to Canada should be aware that their funding may not be available until they arrive in Canada. Mitacs recommends that interns contact their Canadian host university’s Office of Research Services prior to the project to determine when they can access funds.

My internship proposal was not approved. What can I do?

You are welcome to revise and resubmit either a new version of the current proposal or a new proposal on a related, eligible project, per the guidance provided in the decision letter. We provide feedback from Mitacs Research staff, external expert reviewers and/or the Mitacs Research Council in all decision letters in order to help applicants improve proposals which were not initially approved.

Is my Accelerate award a stipend or a salary? Will benefits be deducted?

Accelerate is offered in partnership with your academic institution, which administers your award. We recommend that you speak with your professor and institution about funding policies (“stipend” or “salary”) and potential deductions of benefits. Universities administer funds according to their individual institutional policies, which are flexible under Tri-Council guidelines. If benefits are included, they may be deducted from either your pay or the accompanying research funds.

How can the flexible research funds be spent?

Mitacs follows Tri-Agency eligible expenses for use of funds. See Mitacs use of funds page for details of eligible expenses for Mitacs programs. 

What happens if a project needs to be cancelled?

Mitacs Accelerate internships require the active participation of the intern, professor, and partner organization. All participants should attempt to fulfill their project obligations.

If all parties are in agreement, a project or individual internship may be terminated. If one party wants to cancel the internship without other parties’ agreement, s/he must first notify them in writing and allow 30 days for resolution of outstanding issues. 

Any funds remaining after a cancelled internship must be returned to Mitacs. 

Due to COVID-19, can Mitacs allow for virtual interaction with partner organizations and academic institutions?

As the landscape around COVID-19 continues to change, our priority of supporting global public health remains steadfast. In response to these unprecedented times, Mitacs is making short-term modifications to our operations. 
 
Please send an email to accelerate@mitacs.ca to let us know of your project changes if you are currently working on a project or will start one before August 31, 2020.
 
Please let us know which option below best meets your needs during the pandemic period:
 
A) Off-site: Mitacs is allowing work to take place virtually during this unprecedented time. In this case, we expect interns/fellows to follow partner and academic institution work from home procedures. We expect all participants to keep in close contact with each other, agreeing on expectations, and carrying out methodologies. Please confirm if this is the case.
 
B) Changes: We are also supporting changes to projects on a case-by-case basis. If your project is not able to continue in the current climate (e.g., indispensable infrastructure isn’t available), you can put your project on hold at any time — now or in the future. If you wish to do this, we invite the academic researchers and the partner organizations to discuss the best course of action. Please advise us of the exact or anticipated dates on which your project was/will be put on hold and when it will be resumed.
 
C) Other: If your project can carry on as originally planned, please let us know. If you need to make other modifications, please also let us know.
 
For more information on how to get the most out of your virtual experience, we recommend you visit the following guides and resources: