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Research Manitoba renews agreement with non-profit organization at $4.8M

Research Manitoba renewing an agreement with a firm connecting local companies, interns and training programs, but for nearly $2 million more.

On Monday, business leaders, students and government officials gathered at RTDS Technologies Inc., for the announcement that Mitacs will be funded with $4.8 million over three years.

John Hepburn, the not-for-profit’s CEO said up to 15 per cent of the funding will be used for its Indigenous Pathways program, 20 per cent for social institutions, and the rest for industry.

The funding will support bringing 400 interns into the field to see what it’s like, he said.

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“The students that we deal with are — not exclusively, but they’re primarily — graduate students, masters, PhD and postdoctoral fellows. And a typical PhD student will spend all their time at the university doing really interesting research, but at the university.”

Hepburn said the average research contract costs about $15,000 over four months for graduates, and $20,000 for postdoctoral students, most of that money going towards paying the students.

Intern Dorsa Jeddi said she’s glad to see the funding increase so others can share her experience, which she said has turned her career around for the better.

“I had previously experiences of, like, pure lab work. So (students) are kind of guessing what industry expects us to do and what research they might be useful for them,” she said.

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