APR.Intern provides an alternative cost-effective solution for challenges facing Australian businesses. The program provides a platform for big business and SMEs to connect with high-end PhD research expertise through short-term 3-5 month tightly focused and results driven projects.

The program delivers Australia’s young and brilliant minds from a range of disciplines, enhancing the postgraduate experience of students by giving them the opportunity to apply their research skills within an industry context.

Having placed postgraduate students across all study disciplines and business sectors, APR.Intern is Australia’s leading PhD internship program.



Quick outcomes through high impact research projects


All project-related IP remains with the business


Accelerate women in STEM


Access specialist PhD students & academic mentor expertise to fast track innovation


No HR costs, all facilitation by APR.Intern



APR.Intern currently draws interns from all universities in Australia.

In 2017, APR.Intern finalised negotiations with the Australian Government’s Department of Education and Training to focus program expansion across the nation, developing a wider range of industry connections for the benefit of their PhD students.

APR.Intern also creates strategic partnerships with other groups for mutually beneficial outcomes. Visit the Partnerships tab at the top of this website to see the partnerships we have available at present.



Typically, internships are completed within 3-5 months.


A member of the APR.Intern team will work with you to scope the project, then seek suitable students from our university network for you to interview and select. Once selected, all parties get together to refine the project plan and come to an agreement. The steps are laid out on our How it Works page.


The student will typically spend 50% of their time onsite at your business. This gives them the opportunity to experience your company environment, develop their workplace skills and improve their work-readiness. The remaining time is spent at their university working on the project with the guidance of their academic mentor.



Whilst APR.Intern manages the intern selection process, industry partners are encouraged to interview both students and academic to find the perfect fit for them.


APR.Intern closely manages all placements to ensure research objectives and outcomes are achieved. APR.Intern’s support team will regularly check in with all parties on progress.


Every student comes with an Academic Mentor, who is usually the principal supervisor for their PhD. The Academic Mentor’s role is to provide guidance and support to the student undertaking the internship, lending their years of experience and knowledge to help the student tackle your research challenge or problem.


The Academic Mentor’s co-management of the student ensures that the intern approaches their work with professionalism at all times.



The total cost of an APR.Intern project are laid out below:

  • $3,000 per month is received by the student as a stipend for the duration of the internship
  • $5,500 is paid to the Academic Mentor for their participation in the project
  • $5,500 is paid to APR.Intern for administration of the internship and case-management

Additional Funding


Organisations may be eligible for the R&D tax rebate, which significantly reduces the total cost of the project.


Industry partners can also access state government funding schemes where available, usually for small to medium enterprises (SMEs). Please check directly with funding bodies for eligibility criteria and application processes.


APR.Intern has partnership models which sometimes include funding for companies that meet eligibility criteria. From 2017-2020 the National Research Internships Program will offer a 50% rebate for eligible internships. See the Partnerships tab for more information.

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What is the program’s policy regarding confidentiality and disclosure?

We support the creation of confidentiality and non‑disclosure agreements between participating parties providing the reasonable rights of interns and their mentors are maintained. It is important that these agreements don’t impair the ability of academic mentors or interns to publish their results or for a student to complete his/her thesis. In some instances, these agreements can call for delays in the period before which publications should take place.

What is APR.Intern’s policy regarding Intellectual Property (IP)?

APR.Intern makes no claim whatsoever to IP. Ownership of Project Intellectual Property created during the project will vest upon its creation in the Industry Partner.

Can our industry contribution be “in-kind”?

There are no in-kind options with this program.

Can the industry partner be outside of Australia?

The eligibility of a foreign company to participate in the scheme will be considered on a case‑by‑case basis.

Do I get to choose the APR.Intern Student?

Yes, all industry partners ultimately have the final say in which student and academic mentor they wished to work with.

How are projects developed?

The industry partner identifies a challenge requiring the expertise of an APR.Intern, this challenge is then developed into a project by the intern, mentor and industry partner.

How long are projects?

Project duration is 3–5 months depending on the nature of the project.

How are the projects funded?

Funding Model 1 – Eligible for State Government Funding
This model is only for small-to-medium size enterprise through accessing a State Government Rebate. Rebate arrangements and eligibility criteria differ greatly in each state. Please contact one of the APR.Intern team members for a detailed conversation.

Funding Model 2 – Eligible for funding through an APR.Intern Partnership
Some APR.Intern partnership arrangements offer financial support for eligible businesses that wish to participate in the program. Current partnerships are listed on this website under the Partnerships tab, along with eligibility criteria and a direct contact person for further information.

Funding Model 3 – Not Eligible for Government Funding (Fully Funded Model)
This model is suitable for small-to-medium and large enterprises and government agencies where no other funding model is applicable.
Industry partners pay all three components of the internship costs:

• $3,000 per month to the student for the duration of the internship
• $5,500 to the Academic Mentor for their participation in the program
• $5,500 to APR.Intern for administrative costs of project management

* Private companies may be able to claim the total cost against the R&D rebate at a rate of 45 cents in the dollar