UQ-InSTEP Program

The University of Queensland’s (UQ) Industry Student Team Experience Program (UQ-InSTEP) is a student team internship initiative of the UQ Partnerships Committee, which has cross-portfolio representation and responsible for nurturing UQ’s Partnerships.

The term ‘industry’ applies to a range of external partners including all levels of government, private industry, community groups, industry associations, not-for-profits, foundations, and many other sectors of the economy.

This new program, called UQ-InSTEP, will be cross-faculty and multi-disciplinary in nature and is intended to be a mechanism for UQ’s Partners to have a whole-of-UQ connect with student internships.

UQ’s Partnerships Committee will own the brand and the program, delivery will be managed by the Student Employability Centre in collaboration with Faculties.

The pilot  will be a voluntary internship program that embeds high-performing UQ students with strategic UQ Partners. Due to co-curricular nature of the program, it will align with the dates of the summer vacation period at UQ: mid-November to mid-February (up to 10 weeks).

Students will be placed within a multi-disciplinary team of approximately four (4) UQ students to solve a real problem, an innovation challenge, posed by the Partner organisation. The discipline mix will be determined by the needs of the partner and project, and the initiative will be offered as a co-curricular activity with participating students receiving a modest stipend to cover access costs.

For more information, download the UQ-Industry Student Team Experience Program Guide (PDF, 4.6 MB).

UQ-InSTEP aims to bring together highly motivated students with UQ’s Partners – government, industry, not-for-profits, trusts, research agencies, and other organisations – to develop solutions to significant challenges. The impact of this program will be mutually beneficial for UQ’s students and UQ’s partners. UQ-InSTEP is a Work Experience opportunity that is intended to provide students with authentic experiential learning that will enhance their employability, benefit their education, and meet any accreditation requirements relating to practical knowledge and skills, where required.

This program will benefit students by:

  • Providing an opportunity to gain experience as a part of a multi-disciplinary team tackling real challenges,
  • Building a professional network and gaining exposure to leading partners,
  • Enhancing academic and professional capabilities,
  • Attending pre-internship training program focused on design thinking, working in teams, problem-solving, leadership, communication, and entrepreneurial mindsets,
  • Attending post-internship workshops to articulate the value of the experience to their employability,
  • Experiencing innovation culture within business environments.

This program will also benefit UQ’s Partners by:

  • Increasing the capacity to work with students across discipline areas and levels of the organisation,
  • Building a stronger partnership with The University of Queensland,
  • Supplying talented students with a range of exciting challenges and problems that need innovative solutions through a team-based problem-solving approach - problems that may well sit outside of day-to-day operations,
  • Providing access to a talent pipeline.

UQ-InSTEP will require the following from its Partners:

  • A set of challenges (one for each team) that describes the problem, the team size and the skills/background that will be required in each team (ideal team composition).
  • A key sponsor for each team project from the partner organisation.
  • The commitment of an executive from the partner organisation who will listen to the final presentation, along with a senior UQ USMC member (Head of School and above).

Applications will open when projects become available.

To be eligible to apply, students must:

  • be currently enrolled as a full-time coursework student in a full degree program relevant to the program at UQ 
  • remain an enrolled student at UQ for the entirety of the program
  • have completed at least two years of full-time study (undergraduates), or have completed one full-time semester (postgraduates), or equivalent prior to commencing the program
  • full degree international students must ensure that they continue to meet their visa requirements while participating in the program
  • have a minimum GPA of 5 on their UQ studies report

In order to enable the best and brightest applicants to participate, UQ-InSTEP participants will receive a grant equivalent to $400 per week, paid as two lump sums during the program, to cover incidental costs. 

Industry enquiries

To find out more about the UQ-InSTEP or to submit a project, please contact:

Dr Dino Willox
Director, Student Employability