Growing the Southern Interior Through Research Partnerships Call for Proposals

News November 26, 2021

Posted by Harrison Crerar

Growing the Southern Interior Through Research Partnerships Call for Proposals Featured Image

ETSI-BC is partnering with Mitacs to help the region’s businesses, non-profits and communities by funding internships in partnership with any of the public post-secondary institutes in the Southern Interior of BC.

By supporting internships through Mitacs, ETSI-BC aims to support research projects that connect post-secondary institutions with industry, non-profits, First Nations and municipalities in the region to help address challenges or opportunities that will lead to economic and community development. ETSI-BC believes these projects will create pathways for students and graduates to find meaningful employment in the region and help strengthen the region’s economy.

About Mitacs

Established in 1999, Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada by solving business challenges with research solutions from the best academic institutions at home and around the world. For more than 20 years, Mitacs has worked with over 100 universities and academic institutions, thousands of companies, not-for-profits, and federal, provincial, and territorial governments to build partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada. One of these partnerships is with the Economic Trust of Southern Interior (ETSIBC).


The Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC) is a regional economic trust focused on helping grow and diversify the economy of the Southern Interior of BC. ETSI-BC is committed to helping develop the region’s human capital through encouraging entrepreneurship programming and collaborative research that connects the region’s businesses and post-secondary institutions.

The Growing the Southern Interior through Research Partnerships collaboration will contribute to two of the ETSI-BC Strategic Pillars: Developing Human Capital and Innovating & Advancing Key Sectors. These collaborative research projects between post-secondary institutions in the Southern Interior and the communities they serve will help generate economic opportunity, innovation, employment and resiliency.

About the Partnership

This collaboration will provide extra funding for projects under these two Mitacs funding programs:

These programs support researchers at the undergraduate, graduate and/or post doc level to work as interns to help solve problems and/or develop new products or processes for the recipient organization. These interns will share their time between the academic institution and the industry/non-profit/community partner.

Eligible Projects

Through this funding collaboration, ETSI-BC will consider financial assistance for Mitacs projects that help
contribute to any of the following outcomes:

  • Advancement in any of ETSI-BC’s target sectors: agriculture, economic development, small business (including tech), tourism/sport, and energy/mining/forestry/pine beetle recovery/transportation.
  • Growth and innovation in new and emerging industry clusters, including supporting the region’s industry to become more environmentally sustainable and transition to a Net Zero economy.
  • Economic development opportunities in rural and/or Indigenous communities.
  • Inclusion of marginalized groups including Indigenous-led organizations and Indigenous students.

Goals of this Collaboration

The goals of the partners in this funding collaboration are to encourage:

  • Research partnerships to address the region’s business issues, challenges and opportunities, in partnership with one or more of these post-secondary institutions:
    • College of the Rockies
    • Selkirk College
    • Okanagan College
    • UBC Okanagan
    • Thompson Rivers University
    • Nicola Valley Institute of Technology
  • Projects that support the employment of students within the Southern Interior.
  • Economic development projects with a regional focus or benefit.
  • Diversity and inclusion in economic development opportunities for First Nations and other underrepresented
    groups in the region.

Financial mechanics

Research interns are eligible for funding of $15,000, for each four-to-six-month term. Funded projects can be longer, but only one internship will be co-funded by ETSI-BC ($3,750). Any additional internships would be co-funded by Mitacs only. This offer MAY be used in combination with the SME/NFP discount for multiple internships at $3,750.

Application process

Stage 1: Eligible applicants can submit a Mitacs Accelerate application or a Mitacs Business Strategy
Internship application preferably no later than January 15, 2022. Successful projects will be
approved by March 15, 2022 and would ideally start by June 30, 2022.

Stage 2: Mitacs will share the Public Project Overview with ETSI-BC. Following review by ETSI-BC,
Mitacs will inform the applicants which projects will be receiving the additional funding.

Questions: For questions pertaining to the application process, please contact Candice Loring and Mike Kennefick

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