What is a Project Partner?

Each summer between May and August, MFRE students undertake a Graduating Project in which they work with an organization, hereby referred to as Project Partners, towards a predefined goal. Graduating projects can take many forms, ranging from consultancy to academic research to formal internships in the Vancouver area, across Canada or anywhere in the world.

The MFRE is unique in its approach to projects by providing all the support students need for success. From the moment they start developing their proposal to the end of the project, students receive ongoing direct coaching and advice from a UBC Faculty Supervisor, a peer-reviewed working group led by a mentor, and from the Project Partner through a Site Supervisor.

At the end of the project, students typically submit a set of deliverables to the Project Partner. Depending on the nature of the project, these deliverables can take the form of a formal report, guide, or manual.

Athena Granola Girls Portrait




  • 75

    Project Partners and Counting

  • 184

    Graduating Projects Completed

  • 17

    Major Industries to Which MFRE Students Have Contributed

Why become a Project Partner?

A student can benefit a Project Partner in several ways such as conducting research on specific questions, evaluating performance of certain practices, or performing specific tasks in an internship-like way. Through this symbiotic relationship Project Partners benefit from the work of students, while they obtain valuable professional experience. In many cases students and partners have formed a permanent work relationship once the project is done, either through employment or consulting schemes.


Benefits for Project Partners
  • Opportunity to work alongside students with a portfolio of practical problem-solving skills
  • Access to valuable networks, project experience and industry expertise
  • Project supervision and mentorship by UBC faculty members
  • Potential employees from a growing network of highly trained alumni
  • Potential ongoing partnerships such as year-to-year projects



Grad Project Student with Partner

Project Partnership Quick Facts

  • Location: Canada or abroad (Remote or at the worksite)
  • Full/Part time: Full-time (Part-time also possible)
  • Period: Early May to late August
  • Advisory: Each project is overseen by a Site Supervisor (Project Partner) and a Faculty Supervisor (UBC).
  • Approach: We strive for win-win outcomes and ensure proper alignment of student and Project Partner goals.
  • Confidentiality: Faculty Supervisors and students are generally agreeable to signing standard non-disclosure agreements to protect the Project Partner’s confidentiality.
  • Compensation: Compensation for the student is encouraged but not mandatory and can be negotiated. Every year students work on a mixture of paid or unpaid projects. However, projects that offer compensation tend to be the most sought after and are typically better fitted.


Role of the Project Partner

Even though students receive most of the support they need from UBC Faculty Supervisors and mentors, Project Partners are required to undertake the following via a Site Supervisor:

  • Assist in Project Proposal Development: Site Supervisors are asked to provide feedback on the project proposal developed by the student and Faculty Supervisor, to ensure goals alignment.
  • Meet Regularly with the Student: Site Supervisors are asked to schedule regular meetings throughout the duration of the project to provide feedback on its quality and progress.
  • Support Student Professional Development: Students are supported by MFRE through workshops that aid in the efficient completion of their project. Students will require flexibility to attend these mandatory events.
  • Communicate with MFRE program: Site Supervisors are asked to communicate with the Faculty Supervisor regarding the student’s project/performance at the beginning and end of the project.


The research and data analytic skills of the students were a great match with the risk management accountabilities of our unit. They built relevant models that generated actionable insights and practical information.

J.P. Gervais

Chief Economist | Farm Credit Canada

How to become a Project Partner


Step 1 - Evaluate Potential Fit
How can our students help your organization? Our students have worked on a vast range of projects, browse examples on our showcase below. No specific project idea? Contact us anyway, we’ll help you define one.
Step 3 - Apply to be a Project Partner
Please fill out the application form below if you would like to submit a project idea. We’ll contact you if more details are needed.


Step 2 - Project Approval

If your project is a good match, our team will contact you to formalize it. We’ll then do our best to find a student with matching interests and skills.

Step 4 - Meet the MFRE team

If your project is selected, our team will work with you (in-person or virtually) to define the project specifics.



Apply to Become a Project Partner

Interested in having an MFRE student work for your organization? Follow the link below to submit your application.


Apply Now




logos proejct partners


Looking for Graduating Project examples?

Explore our Grad Project Showcase for exciting examples and ideas.

Go to Showcase


Graduating Projects FAQ