Northern Development introduces Business Development Internship program with Community Futures Development Corporations

January 29, 2020

From back left: Darrin Rigo, internships program manager, Northern Development; Minister Bruce Ralston, minister of energy, mines and petroleum resources; Joel McKay, CEO, Northern Development; and John Farrell, general manager, Community Futures Pacific Northwest.
From front left: Kim Martinsen, general manager, Community Futures Nadina and Margo Wagner, chair, Northern Development.

January 29, 2020
PRINCE GEORGE – Following in the footsteps of the successful Local Government and First Nations Government internship programs, Northern Development Initiative Trust has established the Business Development Internship program.

This newly created program provides grant funding to Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDC) within Northern Development’s service area to assist with the cost of hosting a business intern for a 12-month period.

A total of three intern placements are available per year with CFDCs in Prince Rupert, Houston and Ashcroft hosting the initial interns for 2020.

The purpose of the program is to provide a high level of professional development and training that will prepare recent graduates for careers in community development, economic development and business development.

Successful CFDCs are eligible to receive up to $50,000 from Northern Development to assist with the cost of hosting an intern.

In order to qualify for a placement in the program, potential interns must meet the following requirements:

Applications are now available online at


Hon. Michelle Mungall, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Competitiveness

“This is a valuable new program that will prepare young people for careers as economic development professionals, while helping to strengthen local economies in central and northern B.C. The Northern Development Initiative Trust is a vital partner in driving economic growth and supporting the next generation of business and community leaders through innovative grassroots programs like the Business Development Internship program.”

Hon. Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines, and Petroleum Resources

“Through this program, interns will gain invaluable skills and insight into the unique opportunities facing Northern B.C. This is critical for helping communities to diversify and grow their economies.”

Joel McKay, CEO, Northern Development Initiative Trust

“We’ve heard time and again throughout our region the need for qualified professionals to ensure our Northern communities thrive well into the future. This internship program serves as an incentive for recent post-secondary graduates to receive relevant business development training and mentorship across Northern B.C. – skills which they can use to strengthen our local economies.”

Debra Arnott, General Manager, Community Futures, Sun Country

“We are grateful for the support that NDIT is providing to our office to hire an intern for our region. This allows us to offer another level of support to our small businesses as they transition following the natural disasters and the mill closures.”

John Farrell, General Manager, Community Futures Pacific Northwest

“Through these internships the next generation of business developers will get hands-on experience working with entrepreneurs and community leaders. This is an exciting time for Prince Rupert as we reinvent ourselves as Canada’s next great port city and this partnership with NDIT to provide added capacity could not have come at a better time.”

Kim Martinsen, General Manager, Community Futures Nadina

“Community Futures Nadina is very excited to participate in the Business Development Internship Program with NDIT.  It will increase our capacity to assist small and medium size businesses and provides an excellent opportunity to develop future talent for our region.  It will also enable us to collaborate further with our communities, indigenous organizations, local, provincial and federal governments enhancing business and economic development for our area.”

Media Contact
Holly Plato
Director, Communications and Marketing
Northern Development Initiative Trust