Career Development Internship Program
Paid internship placements in Vancouver and Toronto
Recent university and college graduates need help getting a job in their fields. Experience Education’s Career Development Internship Program (CDIP) is designed to give them that help, placing them in paid, 6-month internships.
Nearly half of Canada’s university and college graduates, and more than half of recent immigrants, have found themselves under-employed. In spite of years of effort working towards a degree, they now spend their days folding shirts at a department store, bagging groceries, or making coffee.
Getting things back on track often leaves grads in a confusing and frustrating catch-22, kept from their careers because they lack experience.
The CDIP helps break that cycle of underemployment by placing grads in companies in their fields, building experience, building their resumes, and starting their careers.
The Career Development Internship Program (CDIP) is your opportunity to get your first professional job, while being mentored, and supported by friendly and experienced program coordinators. This support includes:
- An individual counseling session, at which you draft an Internship Plan describing your learning objectives
- A pre-placement resume and interview preparation sessions to help you pass your interview
- Placement with a pre-screened host company open to helping you meet your objectives, and expose you to valuable experience
- Pairing with an onsite mentor at the host company
- Monthly meetings with your host mentor to assess your learning, and look at areas of improvement
- Regularly scheduled check-ins from Experience Education staff to ensure your internship is going as planned
During your internship you will be paid by Experience Education on behalf of your host company. You will receive the minimum wage (less statutory deductions), and work on average 35-40 hours per week.
At the end of your internship you will walk away with valuable skills, experience, and references that will give you an immeasurable advantage in the job market.
Placements in the CDIP are currently available in ‘Administration’ and ‘Information Technology’:
Interns are typically placed in small and mid-sized services and manufacturing firms. There they work under a mentor and combine clerical and administrative support duties with specific tasks based on their Internship Plan objectives.
In the past, students have been placed with marketing firms, medical offices, freight forwarders, trade consultants, mortgage brokers, equipment manufacturers, and many more…
Administration internships are open to liberal arts, social sciences or business grads.
IT interns have been placed in network administration, software engineering, web and mobile apps development, and web design. Interns have worked with major software and web applications firms and typically combine QA duties with team project work.
IT internships are open to grads of IT and computer science certificate, diploma, and degree programs.
An ideal CDIP placement is made up of 3 components: (1) entry level work, (2) observation and job shadowing, and (3) internship projects.
The first takes up the majority of the placement - upwards of 80% - and that is hands on, entry level work. These are the every day administrative support roles you would expect at any new job. Typical duties include answering phones, preparing documents, assisting different departments with filing and other paperwork, and much more.
Observation, or job shadowing is where interns get the chance to shadow other staff members to learn what they do. While the smallest component of the internship, these observations are excellent learning experiences and give interns the opportunity to see other parts of the company where they can excel.
Lastly, are the internship projects. These take up about 10% of an intern's time at their host company, and involve project work in the intern's field. For example, if an intern has a background in social sciences (history, English, sociology) or business, their professional focus, or 'field', could be in marketing, administration, or something similar. During the internship projects component of their placement, they could take part in projects such as:
- researching the legal environment for a new product or expansion
- researching human resources policies and procedures
- developing a social media strategy
- performing a SWOT analysis for an upcoming project
- creating new CRM procedures and tools for the sales team
These area all projects that past interns have done - with favourable reports on their work from both them and their host companies. The specific project done will depend on a mix of the host company's needs and the intern's abilities. These projects are never 'busy work' - to be valuable to all parties, the best projects are those which are truly productive.
Experience Education works with more than 1,000 host companies in Vancouver, with more being added every week. Host companies vary in size between 3 and 500 staff. All hosts are inspected and vetted - we want to make sure that they will help you meet your internship goals, and will work with us to solve any problems that might arise. We tend to favour start up companies because of the growth opportunities they provide, their likelihood of hiring interns long term, and the chances they give to interns to engage more meaningfully in the work of the company.
We welcome all applicants to the CDIP. Our ideal applicants meet the following criteria:
- Recent graduates, within the last year
- Graduated from liberal arts, social sciences, business, IT, or computer science programs
- Legal ability to work in Canada
- Advanced level of English speaking and writing
We accept students year round - with no fixed start dates. The placement process takes between 6 and 12 weeks, so we recommend you apply as early as possible.
If you are interested in applying for the CDIP, please click here to complete the application and screening form. We review and respond to all applications within 1 week.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How much does this program cost?
- Is this a paid internship?
- How much are interns paid?
- How can I apply?
- I don't see my internship field listed in the program description. Can I intern in a different field?
- Can I intern part-time?
- Can I do an unpaid internship?
- I'm a parent / caregiver / new immigrant / career-changer re-entering the workplace. Can I apply for this program?
- Am I guaranteed an internship placement?
- I am an EU citizen and would like to be placed in order to apply for an International Experience Canada visa, can I join this program?
- My college requires me to do a 6 month coop placement. Can I join this program?
- Will Experience Education help me get a work permit?
- I applied, and have not received an answer, what's happening with my application?
- Once I am accepted, how long until I am placed with a company?
How much does this program cost?
There is no charge to participate in this program, all costs are borne by the host company.
Is this a paid internship?
How much are interns paid?
Interns receive the minimum wage during their placements. The BC minimum wage is $10.25 per hour.
How can I apply?
Please fill out this form: http://www.experienceeducation.ca/apply-now/
I don’t see my internship field listed in the program description. Can I intern in a different field?
Unfortunately no, fields are limited at this time. New fields will be added for future start dates.
Can I intern part time?
Sorry, no. Part-time internships are not currently available.
Can I do an unpaid internship?
Yes and no. If you are a recent grad, then the answer is no - an unpaid internship would not be allowed under BC’s Employment Standards Act. If you are a current student, you *might* be able to do an unpaid practicum. Please see our Student Practicum Page for more information.
I’m a parent / caregiver / new immigrant / career-changer re-entering the workplace. Can I apply for this program?
Am I guaranteed an internship placement?
Unfortunately, no. If you register for the program we will do our best to match you with a host company, however the ultimate decision on who is accepted into a specific internship is the host company.
I am an EU citizen and would like to be placed in order to apply for an International Experience Canada visa, can I join this program?
Sorry, no. CDIP is designed for people who currently have legal status in Canada. If you are looking for an IEC program, please visit our partner organization, Latitude International.
My college requires me to do a 6 month coop placement. Can I join this program?
Sorry, no. This program is restricted to people who have already graduated. Coop students should visit our Coop Program page here.
Will Experience Education help me get a work permit?
I applied, and have not received an answer, what's happening with my application?
Our computer server filters out applications from people who have indicated that they do not currently have legal status in Canada. We also filter out applications from people who have checked 'no' on the question asking for permission to contact them visa phone or email. In each of these cases, the applicant will not receive a response. All other applicants will receive a response within 7 days. If you have not received a reply within that time, please email firstname.lastname@example.org . Please do not call.
Once I am accepted, how long until I am placed with a company?
Placement is not guaranteed in the CDIP, so there is a chance the placement may not happen within any timeline. However, most students will interview within 4 weeks of completing their resume preparation session with EE student services. If a student has not interviewed within 8 weeks of completing their EE resume, their file will be closed.