Employer - FAQ

  1. What is the Science Internship Program (SIP)?
  2. What are the benefits of hiring a U of A student?
  3. Which departments participate in SIP?
  4. What tasks are the students able to complete?
  5. Is SIP an official program at the University of Alberta?
  6. What are the requirements to become a SIP employer?
  7. What are the basic requirements students have to fulfil to participate in the program?
  8. When should job postings be ideally posted and what are the start dates for internships?
  9. For how long should a job posting remain online?
  10. How can an employer post a job?
  11. In case the job posting has expired but no right candidate has applied, is it possible to extend the current job posting?
  12. Is there a fee attached to positing jobs?
  13. How are interviews to be scheduled?
  14. Can interviews be conducted at the University?
  15. After offering a position to a student, what are the next steps in the hiring process?
  16. What are the employer’s responsibilities when hiring a student?
  17. What is the role of the SIP team throughout the internship?
  18. Is it possible to extend the duration of an internship?
  19. What about confidentiality?
  20. Are there preferences on the student’s side in regards to timing and duration of an internship?
  21. What should be done if there is an issue with an intern?
  22. Are there funding opportunities for companies that cannot finance an intern?
  23. Does the company have to pay for relocation costs?
  24. The company’s location is not within Canada, is it still possible to hire a U of A student?
  25. Can international students be hired for internships?
  26. Is SIP matching students to positions?
  27. Want to be involved on campus and with students?


  1. What is the Science Internship Program (SIP)?

    SIP supports university students in gaining relevant, paid work experience while providing employers with knowledgeable and highly-motivated undergraduate students who are prepared to contribute to their organization.

    These students possess a solid knowledge base and technical skill set from their academic courses and labs, with many students having additional research and volunteering experience in scientific fields.

     

  2. What are the benefits of hiring a U of A student?
    • It offers effective and efficient ways for recruiting new talents
    • A “risk free” method to evaluate prospective hires
    • Easy accessibility to an available pool of talented students and graduates
    • Work with highly motivated, inexpensive but qualified labour
    • Interns are a great source for peak load periods
    • It allows to build up a network of ‘brand ambassadors’ that can also act as a secondary recruiting role, since students return back to university and spread the word if they had a great experience
    • Great mechanism for building up a relationship with the University of Alberta (U of A)

       

  3. Which departments participate in SIP?

    All departments from the Faculty of Science participate in SIP.

  4. What tasks are the students able to complete?

    For more information on how our students can support you, please have a look at our brochure.You can also contact us for more information: sciiip@ualberta.ca

     

  5. Is SIP an official program at the University of Alberta?

    Yes, the Science Internship Program is an officially organized program that allows students to gain work experience during 4 to 16 months.  While out on internship, students remain enrolled at the university.

     

  6. What are the requirements to become a SIP employer?

    If the submitted job posting fulfils the following requirements, the company is eligible for SIP:

    • Offer a full time position
    • Offer competitive wages
    • Provide a supervisor for the mid and final evaluation of the student
    • Meet with a SIP coordinator for a site visit or a Skype call

       

  7. What are the basic requirements students have to fulfil to participate in the program?

    All SIP students must have a GPA of 2.3 and at least *48 credits and no more than *105 credits to go out on an internship.

     

  8. When should job postings be ideally posted and what are the start dates for internships?

    In order to be aligned with the academic cycle, the best time for internships to start is in January, May and September.

    Position Start Date Peak Recruitment Period Continuous Recruitment
    January September - October November - December
    May January- February March - April
    September  April - June July - August


  9. For how long should a job posting remain online?

    It is recommended to post jobs for at least two weeks.

     

  10. How can an employer post a job?

    SIP is working with a system called SciWorks. This is an internal job board only accessible for SIP undergraduate science students and employers. The employer can sign up with SciWorks, create a profile and fill in the simple job posting template. It is important to pay attention to the term you want to post in.

    Which term to choose?

    Start month
    Term
    January Winter
    May, July Spring/Summer
    September Fall

    After submitting the job posting online, the SIP staff will check the posting and approve it once all information is complete. Approving a position can take up to 48 hours.  Subsequently, the position is available to all SIP students. Applications can be received through email, the employer’s website recruitment channels or SciWorks. The latter option collects all the applications which can be retrieved as an application package after the deadline of the position has passed. The application method is the employer’s choice. For any assistance please contact: sciiip@ualberta.ca

     

  11. In case the job posting has expired but no right candidate has applied, is it possible to extend the current job posting?

    Yes, it is possible to extend the job posting. Please log in to SciWorks and simply extend the deadline. For more information or assistance please contact: sciiip@ualberta.ca

     

  12. Is there a fee attached to positing jobs?

    No, posting a job with SIP is free.

     

  13. How are interviews to be schedules?

    There are different possibilities to schedule interviews with our students.

    • Interviews can be set up directly with the student.
    • SIP team can organize the interviews for the employer
    • Interviews can be arranged through SciWorks. For more information please click here.

       

  14. Can interviews be conducted at the University?

    Yes, we are able to accommodate interviews on campus. Please contact sciiip@ualberta.ca to arrange the booking of rooms or indicate it in SciWorks when using the interview scheduling tool.

     

  15. After offering a position to a student, what are the next steps in the hiring process?

    Congratulations! After offering an internship position to a student, the student has to get in contact with the SIP team and upload his/her offer letter in SciWorks. The offer letter should contain the job description, the duties, the start and end date, the department, the wage and if possible the supervisor's  name. The position will then be approved and the student will be enrolled into the work experience course. In addition, the employer will receive an onboarding email from the SIP team when the internship has started.

     

  16. What are the employer’s responsibilities when hiring a student?

    The employer is responsible to provide the student with science related tasks. Ideally, the student should be well integrated into the team. Each employer is asked to assign a supervisor to the student to act as a mentor and to provide regular and constructive feedback. Throughout the internship the employer is required to provide a midpoint and final evaluation of the intern. The respective evaluation forms will be sent to the employer by the responsible SIP contact.

     

  17. What is the role of the SIP team throughout the internship?

    The SIP team is the main point of contact should any questions or concerns arise. In general, any changes should be shared with the SIP team. We will send out the probation and final evaluation forms half way through and at the end of the internship as well as perform a site visit 3 - 4 months into the internship. If the employer is located outside of Edmonton a Skype call will usually be arranged.

     

  18. Is it possible to extend the duration of an internship?

    Absolutely, the duration can be extended if both the student and employer agree upon it. The total length a student can go out is 16 months. If the employer wants to extend the duration or to get more information please contact sciiip@ualberta.ca.

     

  19. What about confidentiality?

    In case students might be involved in confidential work projects, the employer is allowed to request the student to sign a confidentiality agreement, to which the student has to adhere.

    At the end of an eight months or longer internship, students have to complete the INTD 400 capstone course, where they are asked to design a poster presentation about their internship. In respect to the confidentiality agreement, the student will have to first discuss the content of the poster with the employer.

     

  20. Are there preferences on the student’s side in regards to timing and duration of an internship?

    A majority of students prefers to go out in May for a four months period. However, a lot of students value longer periods of 8 – 12 months for their internship to maximise their learning experience.

     

  21. What should be done if there is an issue with an intern?

    Of course, the SIP team will support in solving possible issues as fast as possible. In such cases (e.g. should the intern not perform or live up to the expectations), employers can contact the specific SIP contact or sciiip@ualberta.ca. Experience shows that most often, a solution can be found.

     

  22. Are there funding opportunities for companies that cannot finance an intern?

    The government has developed funding opportunities for specific industries. Please click here for more information on the different options.

     

  23. Does the company have to pay for relocation costs?

    In general, the employer is not required to provide any relocation costs. However, often enough, having relocation assistance increases applicant numbers.

     

  24. The company’s location is not within Canada, is it still possible to hire a U of A student?

    Absolutely! We highly welcome internship opportunities from abroad as there are many benefits associated with this adventurous step. The University of Alberta International offers students funding opportunities for going abroad.  

     

  25. Can international students be hired for internships?

    All of the university’s international students are able to apply for a work permit for the duration of their studies. As soon as an international student signs up with the program, they receive an issued letter to apply for such a work permit.

     

  26. Is SIP matching students to positions?

    No. SIP does not match any students to specific positions. Students shall experience a competitive real world situation to be better prepared for later on. This is why students have to apply for each position themselves and no ranking is being done by the Faculty of Science.

     

  27. Want to be involved on campus and with students?
    • Career fairs
    • Panel discussions on jobs, applications, interview skills, working environment etc.: please contact sciiip@ualberta.ca for more information
    • Information sessions for the Faculty of Science: please contact sciiip@ualberta.ca
    • Information sessions for the whole University: please visit the Career Centre Website
    • Job postings on SciWorks
    • Workshops: SIP is offering workshops on resumes, cover letters and interview skills. If you would like to share your employer’s perspective with our students you are welcome to join. For more information on dates and how to get involved please contact sciiip@ualberta.ca