What does U of T expect of the employer?
Our expectation is that the employer will provide the student with a project (or variety of projects or day-to-day tasks) to work on. We recognize that this represents a significant commitment of thought, time and effort because they must create a “niche” for the student. The work may be specifically designed for the individual student, or the student may be given a role in an ongoing project. We hope and expect that the student will be given “real” work to do, rather than “busy” work. The employer will need to provide a physical place for the student to work (an office, a desk, a workstation). In all cases, the employer will need to spend some time orienting the student to the nature and requirements of the project, and monitoring the student’s efforts.
Once an employer has agreed to provide a placement, he or she will be asked to submit a brief project description. This will include a brief narrative description of the job or project, a list of the skills required for the job (both academic and practical skills, such as writing or computational skills), and comments concerning any other project requirements, such as travel, special training, or required availability for field work or a special event. The internships are unpaid. The employer is not expected to pay for student’s travel to and from the workplace, although special costs may be reimbursed, as they would for any typical employee.
The employer will be asked to sign a workplace-education agreement form, which provides for students to receive the appropriate insurance coverage while on the job. The cost and administration of the insurance are covered by the University and by the Ministry of Education and Training; there is no cost to the organization providing the placement. At the end of the academic year, the employer is asked to complete a brief form assessing the student’s performance on the job; this will provide part of the student’s mark for the course. The employer will be invited and encouraged to attend the end-of-year lunch and workshop, with presentations by all our student interns and an opportunity to interact with other ECO400Y5Y employers.