STEAM Ahead Participating Companies

By participating in the STEAM Ahead internship program, your company can build – or continue to build – your talent needs.

Michigan colleges produce exceptional talent, perfect for the state’s large number of innovative, growing companies. STEAM Ahead provides financial support to Michigan companies who hire interns in STEAM-focused internships by providing a one-to-one match towards intern wages for up to $4,000 for full-time interns and up to $2,000 for part-time interns.

For more information on employer participation view the handbook below:

Employer Handbook


Complete a one-time company application to begin your participation with STEAM Ahead.

How to Participate in STEAM Ahead

  1. Complete the one-time Company Application (form linked above).
    Once the form is successfully submitted, a MEDC staff member will reach out within 5 business days to confirm your company’s participation in the program and provide next steps for submitting internships for program funding consideration. Once your company has an approved application, this step can be skipped.

  2. Submit internship(s) for program funding consideration each semester.
    If the internship is approved, a MEDC staff member will reach out within 5 business days to notify the employer and ensure your company is enrolled in the payment portal.

    Although most internships run over the summer, your company can apply to participate year-round. The final number of positions awarded will depend on fund availability and alignment to the qualification criteria below.

  3. Submit requests for payment from our vendor.
    STEAM Ahead is now a reimbursement-based program. You’ll onboard the intern and pay them directly as you typically would and then request repayment from the MEDC (via the payment vendor) for MEDC’s contribution towards your intern’s wages.

Does your Company Qualify?

Companies applying to participate in STEAM Ahead will be evaluated according to several key criteria, including the following:

  • The company’s ties to Michigan: Companies must be Michigan-based or have a strong operational presence in Michigan.
  • Any size company is eligible — from enterprise organizations to startups — so long as it is a legal entity (e.g., C-Corp, S-Corp, LLC, LLP, B-Corp, nonprofits)
  • Technology-focused businesses are preferred.
  • A company’s previous experience working with interns.

Which Internships Qualify?

Internships will be evaluated on several key criteria, including the following:

  • The position description and its relevancy to STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) fields.
  • 8 to 12 weeks in length and take place within the window of the semester.
  • Minimum pay rate of $15 per hour. Companies are welcome to set their own wage above that amount with the understanding that, once MEDC’s match has been exhausted, the company is responsible for 100% of the cost.
  • On-site work experience in Michigan for at least one week.
  • The proposed intern supervisor. Participating companies must provide a direct supervisor to the intern that is capable and willing to provide a meaningful work and career experience.

Internship candidate qualifications can be found on the STEAM Ahead website.

If the intern and internship qualify, the MEDC will match an employer’s contribution up to $4,000 for a full-time intern and up to $2,000 for a part-time intern for internships between 8 to 12 weeks long.

  • Part-time is defined as 20 hours or less and full-time is defined as 21 – 40 hours.


Please reach out to MEDC at with any questions.