Partnership Guidelines

Objective 

BHER works with Canadian employers and post-secondary institutions (PSIs) to support the delivery of work-integrated learning (WIL) opportunities for post-secondary students in their first degree or diploma. The intent of this program is to give all students the experience of participating in at least one WIL opportunity prior to graduation and to help employers accelerate the adoption of WIL within their organization. Participating in high-quality WIL better prepares students to transition to the workforce, which allows them to contribute to a resilient Canadian economy that is prepared to tackle the future.

Eligibility 

Any Canadian employer, business/industry association, or other organizations that directly or indirectly create meaningful work-integrated learning opportunities in Canada may be eligible. Direct involvement of these opportunities would include developing WIL opportunities in their own workplace while indirect involvement could include support the creation of WIL through partners, supply chains, etc. 

WIL activities may include but are not limited to: 

  • Co-op placements;
  • Practicums;
  • Applied research projects; 
  • Mentorship support for existing or new WIL programs; and
  • Internships.

See the Definition of Work-Integrated Learning document for more details on what qualifies as a WIL opportunity or activity. 

How Funding Works 

There are three available funding streams which are outlined below. Additional details around priority areas and assessment criteria are located in the enclosed Assessment Criteria document. 

Stream #1: WIL Program Prototype 

  • Best suited for: single organization
  • Funding ask: up to $100,000
  • Estimated WIL creation: 100-400 opportunities 
  • Reach: Local to regional

Stream #2: WIL Prototype Scale-Up

  • Best suited for: single organization or consortium partnership
  • Funding ask: $100,000 to $500,000
  • Estimated WIL creation: 400-2000 opportunities 
  • Reach: Regional to pan-Canadian

Stream #3: WIL Capacity Building

  • Best suited for: consortium partnership
  • Funding ask: $500,000 to $1,000,000
  • Estimated WIL creation: 2000-5000 opportunities
  • Reach: pan-Canadian

All streams are inclusive of multiple sectors, academic fields, and WIL types. Note that the estimated WIL creation numbers are an approximate guideline. If you fall outside of those ranges, BHER encourages you to reach out to the WIL Partnerships team prior to submitting an application to discuss your proposed program.

Stream #1: WIL Program Prototype

The goal of this stream is to support any organization who wants to prototype small-scale, new, innovative WIL programs that an organization believes would add value for both students and employers participating in the program. The WIL Program Prototype is best suited for single organizations of any size. With funding up to $100,000 that supports the creation of approximately 100-400 WIL opportunities, this stream is an opportunity for organizations to create a program that fills a gap they see in their community or region. The duration of this contract would be up to 12 months, depending on the needs and duration of the program. Projects can start at your preferred date but funding cannot be extended past March 31, 2022. 

Cash and in-kind matching from the partner organization is encouraged but not required.

Stream #2: WIL Prototype Scale-Up

The second stream helps to support organizations that want to scale-up existing WIL programs to include additional underrepresented groups (as noted in the Assessment Criteria), examine innovative methods of delivering WIL, and more. The WIL Prototype Scale-Up stream is best suited for single organizations or a consortium of partner organizations. With funding up to $500,000 that supports the creation of approximately 400 to 2,000 WIL opportunities, this stream is an opportunity for organizations to create a program that fills a gap they see in their industry sector, province/territory or across Canada. The duration of this contract would be 12 to 24 months, depending on the needs and duration of your program. Projects can start at your preferred date but funding cannot be extended past March 31, 2022.  

Cash and in-kind matching from the partner organization is required and must match up to 25% of the total project costs.

Stream #3: WIL Capacity Building

This stream helps to build capacity for WIL within organizations. This could involve the expansion of successful WIL programs, supporting additional groups of students or employers, or adding an innovative component to current WIL opportunities (e.g., change in delivery, types of opportunities, partners you connect with, etc.). The WIL Capacity Building stream is best suited for large organizations or a consortium of partner organizations. With funding up to $1 million that supports the creation of 2,000 to 5,000 WIL opportunities, this stream presents an opportunity for organizations to create a program that fills a gap they see across Canada. The duration of this contract would be 12 to 24 months, depending on the needs and duration of your program. Projects can start at your preferred date but funding cannot be extended past March 31, 2022.   

Cash and in-kind matching from the partner organization is required and must match at least  50% of the total project costs.

How to Apply 

Applications to any stream is a two step process, consisting of an Expression of Interest (EOI) followed by a formal partnership proposal. Following a review of the EOI, select applicants will be invited to submit a proposal. BHER is currently reviewing applications on an ongoing basis. The funding for the WIL program is limited and discretionary. All eligible applications will be assessed against program objectives and the criteria in the Assessment Criteria. Please complete the attached EOI document and send it to the WIL Partnerships Team.

If you do not fit into one of the above streams but would like to discuss a proposal or if you are unsure if your proposal fits within BHER’s mandate, please reach out to the WIL Partnerships Team to set up an initial meeting prior to submitting a proposal. 

Review Process 

Proposals are reviewed for application completeness and financial compliance.  All eligible proposals undergo a review process where they are assessed against program objectives and assessment criteria by a selection committee with input from the WIL Advisory Board. The WIL Advisory Board is composed of individuals from academia and industry with strong knowledge of Work Integrated Learning.  

Depending on the phase of the application, the review process can take between six to ten weeks.
 

Contact the BHER WIL Partnerships Team: 

Contact BHER WIL Product Development:

If your organization does not directly create work-integrated learning opportunities but supports ancillary WIL activities or works to strengthen the WIL ecosystem through product development and research projects, please reach out to Jen Schenkel at @email to discuss potential partnership opportunities. 
 

Summary of Attachments: