Cyprus Mail

Funds for internship programme

Cabinet on Monday approved the continuation and expansion of a scheme to link universities with the labour market.

The €7.2m project, which will be sourced 85 per cent by the EU social fund and 15 per cent by the government, aims to help students who are interested in taking up internships with companies and offer them some financial support.

For the implementation of the project, eight liaison offices have been created, one for each of the eight universities operating in the republic. Their task will be to promote communication and cooperation between universities and businesses.

Student-interns will receive a monthly grant, not exceeding €150, to cover basic needs, such as transportation.

The project, an education ministry announcement said, “is consistent with the development needs and prospects of Cyprus; tackling youth unemployment, stimulating business innovation and improving the skills of the workforce”.

For the six-month internships to be “effective and efficient”, the education ministry, which proposed the idea, calls for the appointment of mentors within the businesses, which will be responsible for “guiding the interns”.

In addition, businesses that appoint staff members as mentors, will too receive a “symbolic grant as minimum motivation”.

The scheme, the announcement said, will also expand to include studyprogrammes which were not integrated in the project until today.

Cabinet also approved a €500,000 budget to fund private employment agencies, in a bid to tackle unemployment. The three-year project aims to find jobs for 1,000 unemployed people.

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