STEM Forward Participating Companies

By participating in the STEM Forward internship program, your company can review resumes from the state’s top aspiring talent.

Michigan colleges produce exceptional talent, perfect for the state’s large number of innovative, growing companies. Michigan STEM Forward is a statewide program of Michigan Economic Development Corporation that matches students attending Michigan colleges and universities with internship opportunities at the state’s leading innovative companies. Companies do not have to be in a specific industry, but all internships must be STEM-focused. STEM Forward provides students meaningful career experience and promotes job retention in the state, while providing financial support to companies who hire these interns.

By participating in the STEM Forward internship program, companies can review resumes from the state’s top aspiring talent. Financial assistance for qualifying companies may be available.

STEM Forward participating companies must be:

  • Michigan-based or have a strong operational presence in Michigan
  • A legal entity (C-Corp, S-Corp, LLC, LLP, B-Corp, nonprofits, etc.) of any size


Complete a company application to begin your partnership with Michigan STEM Forward.


How to Get Started

  1. Create an account in the TrueJob portal via the button above or click here. For detailed instructions with screenshots, review the instructions document here.
  2. Add job description(s) for your internship(s). MEDC will review and formally approve if all qualifications are met.
  3. If you have already identified the intern(s), have them create a profile in TrueJob and upload their resume. If you have not yet identified a candidate, you can use TrueJob to review candidates and their resumes; if you find candidates you would like to speak to, you should reach out to them directly.
  4. Reply back to MEDC at with the following information about the interns you choose:
  • Name
  • Position Title
  • Start Date
  • Hourly Wage
  • Full-time or part-time
  • Length of internship (in weeks)
  • Location of worksite
  • Confirm appropriate contact (name, title, email, phone) for company lead re: payroll, billing, and intern management (if this is you, great!).

Once we have all of this information, our payroll administrator (Strategic Staffing Solutions) will reach out with a welcome packet to set up your company and the interns for payroll and billing.

How the STEM Forward Internship Program Works for Participating Companies

  • Companies who successfully complete the STEM Forward application and approval process will be given access to a resume database of interested Michigan college students. Individual student profile information will include their preferred industries, locations, and availability. Companies that have already identified intern candidates are also welcome to participate.
  • After the intern selection has been made, your company representative will work with MEDC's payroll administrator to onboard the intern into our system for payroll, tax, and compliance responsibilities. You should still plan to provide a full onboarding of the intern into your company based on company standard operating procedures.
  • MEDC will pay up to 50 percent of the intern’s wages for a 10 – 12-week internship period, up to $3,000 for a full-time intern and up to $1,500 for a part-time intern.
  • Your company will pay the remaining 50 percent match to MEDC's payroll administrator via individual payroll intervals. Should the MEDC match reach the maximum allowed before the internship completes, your company's contribution will shift to 100% for the remainder of the internship. In addition, companies will be charged 12 percent of wages to cover FICA, FUTA taxes, and workers compensation associated with direct wages.
  • The minimum wage for this program is $15 per hour. Companies are welcome to set their own wage above that amount with the understanding that once the match has been exhausted the company is responsible for 100 percent of the cost.
  • Although most internships run over the summer, your organization can apply to participate year-round. Also, while your organization can apply for multiple internships, the final number of positions awarded will depend on fund availability and alignment to the qualification criteria below.

Does your Organization Qualify for the Program?

To be eligible to participate in STEM Forward, your company 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 (C-Corp, S-Corp, LLC, LLP, B-Corp, nonprofits, etc.).
  • Your internship position must have a strong STEM focus.
  • The internship must provide some in-person experience at a worksite in Michigan.
  • You will provide a direct supervisor to the intern that is capable and willing to provide a meaningful work and career experience.

How will my Organization's Application be Evaluated?

Depending on program demand, not everyone will receive an award. Companies applying to participate in STEM Forward will be evaluated according to several key criteria, including the following:

  • Technology-focused businesses are preferred.
  • The organization’s financial need.
  • The internship’s job description, relevancy to STEM fields, and work experience.
  • An organization’s previous experience working with interns, as well as the proposed intern supervisor.
  • Strength of referring organization’s recommendation.
  • The organization’s current hiring status. (What is the availability of open positions and is the company actively hiring.)


Please reach out to MEDC at with any questions.