Renewed Funding for Trade Internship Program at UPEI

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With a renewal of funding support from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), the University of Prince Edward Island's School of Business Administration will continue to deliver a successful international trade internship program.

"Small-and-medium-sized businesses in Atlantic Canada who are entering the export market or looking to diversify or grow their export markets must explore the export potential beyond our own borders," said ACOA Minister Joe McGuire. "Graduates from this internship program will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to benefit these businesses in their pursuit to succeed, compete and thrive in the global marketplace."

The program was established at UPEI in 2003 with the goal of helping participating companies to develop or enhance their exporting capabilities, to develop a solid working relationship between educational institutions and the private sector, and also to provide program participants with employment opportunities. The program's trade courses are made available through the nationally recognized Forum for International Trade Training (FITT).

"The FITT program has been an excellent addition to the UPEI School of Business offerings and its students have contributed positively to the PEI business community. Students have excelled in the program, with several students placing first in national exams. They have also taken their FITT international knowledge and skills into real life working experiences on the Island, helping to increase internationalization of the economy of PEI for today and the future," said Dr. Roberta MacDonald, Dean, UPEI School of Business Administration.

Since the inception of the program, three groups of students have taken part in the training. The first two groups, who began in April 2003 and September 2003, have completed their required courses. The third group is currently five-to-seven months into their internships, with placements at a variety of Island companies. The School of Business Administration will be seeking placements for the fourth group beginning in September.

The benefits and successes of the trade internship program are being realized and, in turn, there is a growing demand for the internationally recognized training. Companies interested in receiving more information on the availability of interns are asked to contact the UPEI School of Business Administration.

ACOA provided a $307,550 non-repayable contribution through the Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (ATIP) to UPEI's School of Business Administration to administer the International Trade Internship Program. ATIP is one of the four components under the new five-year $708-million dollar initiative, the Atlantic Investment Partnership and#150; The Second Wave.


Bernadette Lynch
School of Business