Go to the Globe and Mail homepageBy Jennifer Lewington. Just one of four PhD graduates becomes a professor, which begs the question of how to capitalize on the talents of those not headed for academia. One answer, many believe, is internships at the master’s, doctoral and postdoctoral level. Such programs give young scholars an early taste of working in industry and help Canadian companies boost research and development activities.
“We have a huge number of reports that talk about innovation being critical and for the need for creative thinkers with the capacity to move ideas to market,” says Janet Walden, vice-president of research partnerships for the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), which offers an industry internship program. “A huge amount of talent comes out of our universities and with that talent comes a lot of ideas and knowledge and you want to put that to work for Canada.”
However, matching companies and researchers is a challenge. Canada lags the United States in the proportion of PhDs in industry, research shows, and newly-minted PhDs, with theoretical expertise, typically lack job-ready experience. Read more...