Mitacs and the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation, or NBIF, have announced a joint initiative that will pay $860,000 toward research internships at New Brunswick companies.

The two organizations announced Monday that NBIF is contributing $160,000 to the Mitacs research internships program, which will allow Mitacs to increase its funding in New Brunswick by $700,000.

The statement said the funding from this initiative will be directed to companies that already receive NIBF support through its Innovation Voucher Fund or Venture Capital Fund.

“This new initiative is a win-win for our province: it provides students with valuable experiential learning opportunities via paid internships, and it provides our portfolio companies with easy access to research expertise to accelerate their business growth,” said NBIF Director of Research Laura Richard in a statement. “I believe that Mitacs’s expertise in internship programs is a natural pairing for our portfolio of applied research funding and that together we can create impactful results for N.B.”

Mitacs is a pan-Canadian not-for-profit organization that supports innovation by funding academic researchers conducting R&D projects for private businesses. It’s similar to work NBIF already conducts through its Innovation Voucher program, which provides companies with the funds to work with research institutions in the province.

The statement said the new funding will support up to 40 internships for university and college students. The goal is to help the students to advance their skills and eligibility for the workforce, and help local businesses access to research talent.

The funding is restricted to companies already supported by NBIF to help these innovation-driven companies obtain access to academic expertise and internships at a reduced rate, helping them tackle pressing business problems.  It also gives NBIF an opportunity to easily add more funding in some circumstances through its Lab-to-Market research funding program.

“This agreement between New Brunswick Innovation Foundation and Mitacs will support local businesses while equipping young researchers with necessary job skills,” said Mitacs CEO and Scientific Director John Hepburn. “Together we drive innovation and advance priority sectors for the province.”