Youth Internship Initiative - Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The Youth Internship (YI) program is a national initiative coordinated by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) and funded through the Government of Canada’s Youth Employment Strategy (YES). YI is funded under the Career Focus (CF) stream of YES. The objectives of the YI program are (a) to assist young people in gaining the skills and experience needed to successfully transition into and remain in the labour force; and (b) to encourage not-for-profit organizations across Canada to develop and apply information, communication and technology-related skills (ICT) and knowledge to serving their clients.

Eligible Youth

The purpose of the YI Program is to provide a work experience that facilitates the young person's transition to the labour market. Given the skills level of the target group, the number of work experiences available under YES and the number of youth needing experience, youth are normally limited to one Internship opportunity.


To participate in the YI Program eligible youth must:

  • be between the ages of 15 and 30 at the time of intake;
  • have demonstrated skills achievement at the post-secondary level — this means that the participant must have more than secondary school achievement. If the participant is a high school dropout who has taken an equivalency course or courses, they would not qualify. If the participant entered university or college as a mature student and is pursuing a course of study at the post-secondary level, they would qualify;
  • intend to gain ICT skills and knowledge;
  • meet the job requirements of the IHO, which should include stated ICT-related activities;
  • be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or person who has been granted refugee status in Canada and be legally entitled to work in Canada; and
  • must not be in receipt of Employment Insurance (EI) benefits while participating in the YI Program.

Eligible Activities

Activities performed by youth interns participating in the YI program can include but are not limited to:

  • Software and video game development;
  • Coding and application development;
  • Network troubleshooting;
  • Adaptive technologies;
  • Website development;
  • Web-enabled learning;
  • Social media campaigns and other content development;

At a minimum IHOs are expected to:

  • provide training and mentoring to youth interns to enhance and maximize the participants' experience; and
  • support youth interns in the development and implementation of work activities that provide the participants with a meaningful work experience.
  • For more details about eligibility requirements please see Schedule A at the bottom of this page.

    Success Story

    "Overall the internship has given me a chance to add to my skillset. I am walking away with marketing, technology, social media and project management skills I did not have before. I entered this internship with little knowledge of social media other than personal experience, and now I feel more confident to pursue a job that would require such knowledge. As a general management business student the ability to diversify my marketing and social media skills through the internship will without a doubt improve my changes of finding and succeeding in future long-term employment." Sheldon Falk, intern at the Community Justice Centre, Courtenay, BC


    2016 - 2017 Regional Coordinator and Contact Information

    All questions pertaining to the Youth Internship program should be directed to:

    Marie Beaulne - Regional Coordinator

    Marie @

    250-334-8063 or 604-355-6739

    Application Contract, Schedules, and Forms

    Youth Intern Initiative - Contract Application 2015/2016 - Completed and sent back to Regional Coordinator upon hiring eligible youth.
    Schedule A - Eligible Intern Host Organizations and Eligible Youth Activities
    Youth Hours Budget Form - Completed and sent back immediately to Regional Coordinator.

    Youth Forms and Reports

    Youth Report - To be completed prior to end of internship.
    Success Story - To be completed prior to end of internship.
    Participant Information Form - To be completed upon hiring eligible youth.