In addition to enhancing comprehensive business engagement offices and providing access to experts on campuses, MCRN has developed two signature program activities. For small companies, MCRN offers a Small Company Innovation Program (SCIP) to provide access to research and a Small Company Internship Award (SCIA) to provide access to talent.
To be eligible for the SCIA program, companies must be based in Michigan with significant business operations in the state. The SCIA is a matching grant program where funding for a 12-week internship or co-op position is split evenly between the SCIA and the hosting company.
The program is intended to help companies overcome a common challenge faced by small companies and entrepreneurs – getting research and development needs met so they can get to commercialization faster. Often, universities have the expertise and facilities that the company needs, but small companies may not have the connections nor are they able to afford the cost of conducting research and development at a university. The program aims to introduce companies to the benefits of working with a university to increase the number of university/industry collaborations across the state, and to accelerate a company’s positive economic impact.