The High School Apprenticeship Challenge is designed to create new internship opportunities by subsidizing intern wages for small life sciences companies and academic researchers to enable them to hire paid interns.
Host organizations seeking interns first register online. Once approved, they are given access to a secure database to review applications, reach out directly to candidates, and select interns with the qualifications that are most suited to their needs. Interns are hired and paid by the employer. Companies can hire up to two interns and research institutions can hire no more than 30 interns per year.
The MLSC reimburses eligible host organizations up to $3,600 per intern, based on $15.00 per hour for six weeks of full-time work. Internships can be part-time or full-time and must take place between May 2022 and April 2023.
- Be life sciences companies, research intuitions, or incubators engaged in life sciences:
- For-profit companies must have 100 or fewer employees in Massachusetts (up to 250 worldwide) to be eligible for the internship subsidy. Larger companies are also encouraged to participate, but cannot be reimbursed for intern stipends.
- Research institutions and life sciences incubators of any size are eligible for the subsidy.
- Be located in Massachusetts and internships must take place in Massachusetts.
- Companies are required to be registered to do business in Massachusetts and must submit Certificates of Good Standing from both the Massachusetts Department of Revenue and the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth (click on links to request).
- All host organizations must also provide MLSC with a signed copy of their Form W-9 and an authorization for electronic fund transfers (if not previously provided).
- Offer interns a hands-on learning experience and at least one mentor that directly oversees the internship at an official place of business. However, in order to support organizations in providing safe working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic, interns can work remotely with prior written approval from MLSC. In that event, it is required that host organizations provide daily check-ins with interns.
- Interns must meet the program’s eligibility requirements as detailed here, which have changed as of 2021.
- Interns must be hired and paid directly by the host organization and treated as a W-2 employee (not a contractor or subcontractor) for compensation purposes.
- It is preferred that interns are paid through a third-party payroll service (e.g. ADP, Paychex, Intuit Payroll). If using an internal payroll system, such as QuickBooks, in which payroll is not processed by a third party, additional support in the form of weekly timesheets will be required.
- Companies cannot hire an intern who is the child, grandchild, sibling, niece, nephew, or cousin of any employee of the company. Research institutions cannot hire an intern that is related to any employee affiliated with the department at which the intern will be working.
Resources for Host Organizations
The application period for companies opens in January and will remain open until all funding for the program has been allocated. Research institutions should contact firstname.lastname@example.org regarding potential internship placements.