Hiring Co-op Students

Co-op Hiring Incentives 

Ontario Co-operative Education Tax CreditAvailable to all employers who hire co-op students from an Ontario university. Employers can receive 25% (30% for small businesses) of expenditures back-up to a maxium of $3,000 for each placement. 

Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) 

*SWPP funding has temporarily become more flexible during the COVID-19 pandemic: (updated May 29th, 2020)

  1. Net new" hire restrictions have been removed. This means that any students hired may be considered for funding, not just new roles or more students than previous terms.
  2. Up to 75% in wage subsidies (to a maximum of $7,500) per co-op student you hire
  3. Work experiences with a delayed start, beyond the typical May 1st, will still be approved and may be able to hit the max funding of up to $7,500
  4. Students can work from home
  5. SWPP partners can provide up to 75% of the wage subsidy up front for employers experiencing cash flow issues and need the money in advance
  6. A pre-approval checklist is being developed, some Partners already have one, so that employers know if they qualify before going through the hiring process. The checklist may vary from Partner to Partner but the ESDC directive has been to keep it simple
  7. Post-secondary institutions now qualify as SWPP employers as long as the work experience is a quality WIL opportunity that is directly linked to the student's program of study and career goals. All UofG faculty/staff, please see communication from Cate Dewey for more details
  8. Shortened work terms may now be eligible for SWPP funding 
  9. SWPP funding has also become temporarily more flexible. If you didn't qualify in the past, you should consider applying for the summer work term.

The Government of Canada has co-op funding opportunities as part of the Student Work Placement Program (SWPP) administered by Employment and Social Development Canada. 

Through the Student Work Placement program, employers can apply for wage subsidies to help them hire students in science, technology, engineering,math (STEM) or business.

Over 11,500 paid student work placements will be created by this program through 2021.

How much you could get

  • up to $5,000 for every student you hire through the program
  • up to $7,000 for every student you hire that is in their first year or is from an under-represented group including women in STEM, persons with disabilities, newcomers and Indigenous students

Below are currently ten confirmed industry partners administering the SWPP program and our co-op programs meet the eligibility requirements.   

Consider these funding opportunities for your co-op hiring needs.

  • Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC)– Career Ready Program 
    The program provides up to 50% (to a maximum of $5,000) of a work term student’s pay in wage subsidies to employers. Employers that hire students from underrepresented groups including women in STEM, indigenous students, recent immigrants, persons with disabilities, and first-year students may also qualify for additional funding (up to 70% or $7,000).  Employers must be willing to provide full-time work for a minimum 12-week term duration in a business+technology or technology capacity to be eligible for funding.  
  • Information and Communication Technology Council (ICTC) – WIL Digital
    Canadian employers working in one of these emerging sectors: Advanced Manufacturing, Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Fintech, Intelligent Retail, or Big Data, Clean Tech, Connected transportation, Entertainment and Gaming, e-Health and providing a paid work integrated learning (WIL) experience to a post-secondary student studying full-time in science, technology, engineering, math or business in Canada are eligible to apply to receive a subsidy up to 70% of wages (capped at either $7000 or at the end of 4 months).
  • Canadian Council for Aerospace and Aviation (CCAA) – CCAA and the SWILP 
    Covers the cost of a co-op student's salary up to 50% (max. $5,000) and up to 70% (max $7,000) for first year students and underrepresented groups. CCAA's SWILP program is geared toward organizations within the aviation and aerospace industry. Focus on small to medium sized businesses, hiring for for 12-16 week work terms. 
  • Environmental Careers Organization of Canada – Wage Subsidy Program for Environmental Students 
    ECO Canada's new CO-OP Program provides a wage subsidy of up to 50% to a maximum of $5000 to employers hiring students in an environmental role (environmental sector, environmental division, or environmental projects).
  • Biotalent Canada – Student Work Placement Program
    Covers the cost of a co-op student's salary up to 50% (max. $5,000) and up to 70% (max $7,000) for first year students and underrepresented groups. The co-op position needs to have a biotechnology focus, or the employer needs to have a biotechnology focus.  *NEW - Healthcare organizations are now eligible to apply for student wage subsidy. 

  • Electricity Human Resources Canada (EHRC) – Empowering Futures: Developing Electricity Talent Through Work-Integrated Learning
    Empowering Futures is the new WIL Program for Canada’s electricity sector. Led by Electricity Human Resources Canada (EHRC), Empowering Futures will create up to 1000 new WIL opportunities in electricity over three years. Wage subsidies up to $7,000 will be available to employers who create new WIL opportunities such as co-ops, internships, field placements, applied projects, capstone projects or case competitions.

  • Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiHR) – Gearing Up: Developing Mining Talent Through Work-Integrated Learning
    Gearing Up is the new WIL Program for Canada’s mining sector. Led by MiHR, Gearing Up will create 850 new WIL opportunities in mining over four years. Wage subsidies up to $7,000 will be available to employers who create new WIL opportunities such as co ops, internships, field placements, applied projects, capstone projects or case competitions.

  • Toronto Finance International (TFI)
    This organization is a partner of the Program, but does not administer wage subsidies.

  • Venture for Canada VFC 
    The Venture for Canada Atlantic Internship Program is a paid, subsidized internship opportunity program for Canadian post-secondary students to work in Atlantic Canadian startups and growing small businesses. 

  • Magnet Student Work Placement 
    The program is delivered by Magnet along with a range of recognized associations and organizations who represent key industries and sectors in Canada.​ Together, they partner with colleges, universities, polytechnics and CEGEPs to: provide wage subsidies, create recruitment opportunities, and, convene educators and employers to help align PSE curricula to the skills needs of industry. 

Other Funding Programs

  • Career-Ready with CTMA: Hiring Grants for Automotive & Advanced Manufacturers Career-Ready with CTMA and manufacturers that fall into the automotive sector can receive between $3,000-15,000 per candidate (multiple candidates per employer are also accepted) depending on the length of the work term. Administered by the Canadian Tooling & Machining Association and Mentor Works, the hiring grant supports Ontario’s automotive manufacturing industry by helping employers hire and deliver meaningful work experiences to co-op students, recent graduates, and potential new apprentices.Fill out the form here Career-Ready with CTMA Page or contact Jamie (jamie@mentorworks.ca) directly to confirm their eligibility and start the application process
  • Career-Ready with Auto Stream Program - Partner: Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association (APMA) - To help connect students with careers in the auto sector, APMA is working with colleges and universities to help place 669 students, apprentices and recent graduates with jobs and careers in Ontario’s automotive supply sector.  Participants will gain practical on-the-job experience to help launch their careers in the automotive sector. The CRF program supports employers by contributing to the cost of hiring students while building a pipeline to support talent growth and attraction to the sector. Businesses will receive $3000.00 per placement, and $5000.00 per placement if the participant has a disability. A single placement lasts 10 weeks to 4 months, and participants may qualify for up to 3 placements in a calendar year.

  • Clean Tech Internships - Employers can hire an intern for up to 8 months in a full-time position related to the use or development of clean tech, and CICan will contribute up to 70% of the intern’s salary, to a maximum of $15,000.

  • Mitacs Accelerate - Solve your research challenges with academic expertise, leveraged funding, and one-to-one support from Mitacs. Internships start at four months and can scale up as much as you need — your financial contribution starts at $7,500.

Please contact our office if you have any questions about the various co-op hiring incentives: (519) 824-4120 x52323, or email us at recruit@uoguelph.ca