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Student Work-Integrated Learning Program

The Student Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) program connects post-secondary students with work placements in technology and business.

This Canada-wide program is a three-year initiative that gives 400 post-secondary students experience navigating the future of work in high-demand fields. Students will have the opportunity to develop hands-on skills while working with high-growth MaRS ventures for an intensive work placement.

The summer cohort of the WIL program will begin on May 7, 2018, and the fall cohort will begin in September 2018.


  • Become part of the MaRS talent pipeline
  • Find employment in MaRS’ four sectors: Health, Energy & Environment, Finance & Commerce, and Work & Learning
  • Be better prepared to secure higher earnings and lower unemployment upon graduation
  • Develop and showcase the technical skills and mindsets for growth (for example, strategic thinking, problem solving and teamwork) that employers are hiring for




  • Get access to MaRS’ pipeline of high-performing students who are trained and equipped with mindsets for growth
  • Receive a wage subsidy of up to 50% of wage cost (up to 70% if hiring a student from an under-represented group)
  • Attract talent from across Canada and streamline your organization’s post-secondary talent recruitment process, through MaRS’ connections with Canadian universities and colleges


Who can apply?

To foster a diverse and inclusive workplace, we’ll be focusing on attracting students of all ages from underrepresented groups, including female STEM students, students with disabilities, recent immigrants, Indigenous youth and first-year students.

Scaling ventures and corporations are encouraged to hire students through the WIL program. If interested, your organization must offer a minimum 12-week placement and hire students that have never been employees of your organization.

To qualify for the program, students must be:

  • enrolled in full-time studies with an eligible Canadian post-secondary education institution;
  • studying in fields related to science, technology, engineering, mathematics and/or business;
  • a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or a person to whom refugee protected has been conferred; and
  • legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial or territorial legislation and regulations

The WIL Curriculum

In addition to work placements with ventures, students will complete a curriculum in systems thinking, leadership, cross-sector collaboration, innovation and anti-oppressive practices. Learning will be done through a unique combination of case studies, interactive dialogues, simulations and readings. All students will complete this curriculum and be equipped with the mindsets for growth needed to excel in the fast-paced tech environment.

How do students apply to the WIL program?

Student applications for the Fall will open on June 25, 2018. Applications will be accepted until July 18, 2018 at 12:00 p.m. (noon). Visit this page regularly for new opportunities. Summer placements will begin on May 7, 2018, and fall placements will begin in September 2018.

Why was the WIL program developed?

Multiple stakeholders identified a disconnect between the demands of employers and the skills students have when they graduate from post-secondary education institutions. This results in a skills gap where employers have difficulty finding employees with the relevant skills. It also creates an experience gap where the skills that students learn become irrelevant when they enter the workforce.

The WIL program is designed to combat this by providing work experience with scaling ventures and large corporations in key growth sectors.

Applications will be open from June 25 to July 18, 2018. Additional positions to be added.


Autodesk Canada Co.

  • User Interface Research Intern


  • Systems Developer
  • Server Developer
  • Web Developer

CleanSlate UV

  • Mechanical / Mechatronics Engineering Co-op
  • Software / Computer Engineering Co-op
Mirexus Biotechnologies Inc.

  • Complexation Research Assistant
  • Analytical Chemistry Research Assistant
  • Conjugation Chemistry Research Assistant

Trainer Plus Inc.

  • Web Developer
  • Designer
  • Content Producer
  • Back End Developer

Vena Solutions Inc.

  • Software Developer
  • Marketing Intern
  • Business Development Intern


Get involved

Subscribe to our newsletter for updates.

If you’re interested in hiring a student, please contact us now.


Have questions about the application process?

Watch the recording of our student application webinar (use code ‘swil’ to view).

Participating Companies