Internship Compliance

We uphold the highest quality of service to ensure we meet all the provincial employment standards and that our participants get the best experience possible while here in Canada. From listening to participant and host company feedback we have designed an internship compliance regulation list which outlines the standards that we abide to with every placement.

All participants to Stepwest’s Internship program in Canada, which includes an unpaid practicum, must be currently enrolled in a college/university program as the internship will account for a proportion of their course credit. By adhering to each of the provincial employment standards, we have been able to develop a strong, lasting relationship with host companies, colleges, schools and partner agencies which allows participants to get the most of their internship abroad and their time in Canada.

Our strictly enforced regulations include:

  • The intern should be the primary beneficiary of the internship.
  • Unpaid internships cannot exceed a period of 6 months.
  • The host company must provide an onsite supervisor.
  • The intern cannot be hosted in a home office setting.
  • Host companies cannot host more than 1 intern for every 5 employees.
  • The intern cannot financially benefit the company.
  • The intern cannot replace the role of a paid employee.
  • Host companies must have a break period of 2 weeks between hosting each intern.

‘Ethical Internships’

In 2012, Stepwest and a group of private internship placement providers came together to devise a new strategy to better regulate the industry standards related to internships. ‘Ethical Internships’ is an organization that has set a single, nation-wide standard on how internship programs are to be regulated and managed across Canada. The aim of the organization is the provide better support, openness and protection to both interns and host companies and to ensure that every internship placement adheres to all regulations set out by the organization. Stepwest fully adhere to all standards and principles set out by ‘Ethical Internships’, some of which include:

  • Interns cannot benefit the host company financially. The internship must be primarily educational
  • Internships must be directly related to a study program in all cases
  • Unpaid internships cannot exceed 6 months in duration or be longer than the duration of the study portion of the co-op program
  • Host companies cannot host more than 1 intern for every 5 employees
  • Host companies cannot use an unpaid internship as a ‘trial-run’ or probation period for any future full-time employment opportunity
  • Interns cannot replace/displace any position of a paid employee

A full list of regulations and principles on how Stepwest adhere to industry standards can be seen on our ‘Hosting an intern’ page. Here you will also find out how we select host companies and how you can create a strategic plan in order to host an intern in the future.