Have a project that could use the savvy business skills of a post-secondary student? Apply for funding through the BCIC Innovator Skills Initiative program (BCIC-ISI).

Applications are currently closed. Updates regarding funding will be posted as they become available.

How it works

You can apply for funding to hire a student for a technology-related, business project. If accepted, you will receive funding to pay for your student wages.

You can apply for $2,500-$7,500 (average $5,000). The voucher must be matched 50% in-cash by a company contribution, to cover up to 50% of a student’s wages. Your company can apply for up to two vouchers per year.

We will look at in-kind matching on a case-by-case basis. Please provide a detailed, cash breakdown of your in-kind contribution, such as items provided to the student, hours of training, who is providing training, and rate/hour of consultant fees (to a maximum of $100/hour). The in-kind contribution must demonstrate value for the student and be equal in value to your proposed match.


Applications are currently closed. Updates regarding funding will be posted as they become available.

Application forms

When applying, please be sure to describe how your project will help a student develop business skills that they’ll need on their future career path.

You are welcome to submit your company application first. Please note, final approval can not be given until your company has found a student.

Once you have completed the application form(s), submit to contact@newventuresbc.com.

Benefits for Students

BCIC-ISI provides post-secondary students from across BC with business, technical, innovation and entrepreneurial training, skills and experience to meet the needs of industry in BC.

The program focuses on exposing students to regional industry needs and challenges, while providing students with the skills required to run a successful business

RuleBCIC Tech Works Logos and Regulations

  • The BCIC-ISI may only be used to pay for work undertaken in the province of BC. Any portion of a project undertaken outside of BC is not eligible under the program.
  • Vouchers cannot be used to pay for student services already fully funded through other sources.
  • Vouchers may only be used to pay for work as outlined in the program guidelines.
  • All cash funding from the voucher and any company in-cash matching contributions must be student salary. CRA deductions are permitted and the responsibility of the employer.

Company Eligibility 

  • Must be a BC-based technology company and participating in the program partner’s services or programs.
  • Is eligible to receive two vouchers per year.
  • Must have competed in the BCIC – New Ventures Competition
  • Must provide a 1:1 matching contribution to the voucher funds (in-kind and/or in-cash).
  • Must provide adequate training (business, technical and innovation and entrepreneurial) to meet the program objectives.
  • Must provide a project to the student. Company projects offered to students must be related to business, technical and innovation and entrepreneurial opportunities, and cannot be general administrative duties.

Student Eligibility

  • Must be a post-secondary student currently enrolled at a BC post-secondary institution.
  • Is required to complete the ‘Virtual Market Validation Training’ offered through New Ventures BC, and companies must ensure this is completed.
  • Is eligible for two vouchers per year.
  • Can be a co-op student if the co-op position is not funded by any other co-op subsidization program.
  • Must be employed a reasonable number of hours per week (approximately 25 hours) at a fair market value for a highly skilled student; in accordance with regional and industry differences factoring in local wages, types and lengths of projects.

New Ventures BC is one of several partners for the BCIC-ISI Program. For a full list of program partners, please see this document.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is an ‘in-kind’ contribution?
    Examples of in-kind contributions may be (but are not limited to) training time, regular staff time, shares in company.
  1. Is it possible to hire a student from a private post-secondary?
    Yes, as long as the post-secondary institution is accredited under the governing bodies of BC. If you are in doubt, please contact us.
  1. Does the student have to be returning to school?
    The student must be registered and currently enrolled at a BC post-secondary institution.
  1. Can students and companies be matched in the middle of a term?
    Yes, the goal is for all work term matches to be completed by June 15 for summer term and by September 15 for the fall term. However, if you see an opportunity for a student and company match, please do not hesitate to contact us, as there may be flexibility.
  1. How does the ‘Virtual Market Validation Training’ work?
    Once matched, companies are provided with information on how to register students for the mandatory Virtual Market Validation Training.
  1. Do the students have to work the whole duration of each work term (summer and fall)?
    No, the work term start and end dates simply denote the period of time in which the summer and fall work terms occur, and the maximum period of time that a student could be employed for each work term. Students are employed during the work term for as long as their voucher amount, plus any matching cash contributions from the company, last.
  1. Do students need to be working with the companies by the start of the term?
    No, BCIC needs to know what students and companies have been matched June 30, but employment can begin after that date.
  1. Can the same students and companies receive vouchers in subsequent work terms and years?
    Yes, as long as the limit of two vouchers per year for each company is not exceeded. BCIC would like to see vouchers used to support a diversity of students and companies, but we understand there are circumstances where a company, project, and student are of a quality that warrants repeated access to an opportunity.

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