Published On: Tuesday, 10 January 2017

UBC Okanagan Co-Op Program Receives Funding Injection

UBC Okanagan Co-Op Program Receives Funding Injection

- Accelerate Okanagan is a tech accelerator that provides the necessary tools, disciplines and structure required for entrepreneurs to be successful, in an innovative not-for-profit, zero-equity-stake model that works better, in a place where people live better.

KELOWNA - An investment of $50,000 from the Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust (SIDIT) to UBC's Okanagan campus will give regional companies access and financial support to the best and brightest of young talent—UBC Okanagan co-op students.

The pilot program makes available grants of up to $5,000 to qualifying businesses in the Southern Interior region of BC looking to bring on a co-op student from the pre-screened talent pool for the first time. UBC Okanagan Co-op Education has expanded this year to include students studying diverse subject areas—everything from arts and sciences to management and human kinetics—in paid work opportunities across the province and beyond. This program builds on SIDIT's ongoing support of UBC Okanagan students through its bursary and scholarship program, with a total investment exceeding $400,000.

The goals of the grant program are to develop co-op experiences and opportunities, encourage small- to medium-sized enterprises in the Southern Interior to hire a co-op student, support regional resident recruitment efforts by helping students access employment off-campus, as well as create a bridge between communities and the Okanagan campus of UBC.

Preference will be given to small- to medium-sized enterprises that fit within one or more of the following categories: start-ups, family businesses, rural municipalities with a population less than 25,000, entrepreneurs, employers in remote communities, manufacturing and agricultural operations with less than 50 employees, and non-profit organizations.

The program has a particular focus on co-op work experiences that demonstrate direct impact and community development around agriculture, forestry, pine beetle recovery, transportation, tourism, mining, small business, economic development and energy matters.