What is a Mitacs Cluster?

Mitacs internships enable students and industry to collaborate on research problems with practical impact. SFU's professional master’s program concentrated in big data, visual computing and cybersecurity provides highly skilled talent who seek challenging internships each year.

This Mitacs cluster application recognizes themes of research that are shared by multiple companies who benefit from alignment on employment-ready skill sets in their talent acquisition. Each participating company can identify key areas of innovation that it cares about the most. Feel free to draw upon the challenges laid out below.

Why join?

Tap into a skilled talent pool at reduced cost - By leveraging Mitacs matching funding, your company can offer an attractive compensation package, thereby attracting top students.

Low workload - You only need to spend ~30 mins to fill in a short form rather than spend several weeks to write a long (10-20 pages) Mitacs proposal.

Flexible hiring plan - You only need to tell us the maximum number of interns that you plan to hire. There is no penalty if you end up hiring fewer students.

Visibility - Upon acceptance, our website will list the companies that were successful in this shared application. Selected student internship reports are published on Medium for broad visibility within our community of practice.

Research Challenges

We are looking for industrial partners who have the following research challenges in big data and visual computing. If the research challenges of your company are not reflected here, we would still be happy to learn about your interests. Please specify your ideas in the form below and we will try to adjust the resulting proposal to be as inclusive as possible.

Big Data 

Research in big data that relates to practical applications of artificial intelligence and machine learning on data-centric subjects.

Data Preparation

  • Data Collection
  • Data Extraction
  • Data Transformation
  • Data Integration
  • Data Cleaning

Data Analysis and Modeling

  • Data Visualization
  • Classification, Clustering, and Regression
  • Correlation and Causality Analysis
  • Machine Learning Interpretation
  • Streaming Analysis

Data Product

  • Data Privacy and Security
  • AI Ethics
  • Model Deployment 
  • Scalable Data System
  • Cloud Computing

Visual Computing

Visual Content Labeling

  • Segmentation
  • Classification
  • Clustering
  • Identification
  • Anti- Spoofing

Visual Content Generation and Improvement

  • Data Generation (GAN)
  • Noise removal
  • Data Completion
  • Upsampling (super resolution)
  • Stylization
  • Synthetics data generation (includes AR/VR, Mocap, Video Games, etc)


  • Path Planning
  • Collision Detection
  • Environment mapping
  • Environment reconstruction
  • SLAM

Frequently Asked Questions

Is my company qualified to be a sponsor for SFU Mitacs Cluster?

If you need a co-op student to work on a problem related to Section 3 and you are willing to join the cluster with its conditions, you are qualified.

What are the benefits of joining Mitacs Cluster?

You can attract interest from high-performing student applicants by offering more competitive pay at a modest level of investment.

If I initially commit to accept x number of students, do I have to give an offer to all x students?

No. Your initial commitment only gives us an estimate for the maximum number of students that will be covered. You are not obligated to take any specific number of students.

Are companies able to interview students?

Companies are allowed and encouraged to interview students and give offers to students that are a good fit.

How will sponsors make payments to their hired co-op students?

Usually, Mitacs sends an invoice to your company. Your company sends the money to Mitacs. Mitacs matches the money and sends it to SFU. SFU pays the students.

When is the co-op period?

Co-ops usually run from May to August or May to December, depending on the interest of the company and students for doing a four-month or eight-month internship.

How much does the company need to pay and how much will a student receive?

The company is supposed to pay $13,000 and Mitacs will match $7,500. A student will receive $18,000 over a period of four months. The remaining $2,500 will be used for other project-related expenses (e.g., attending conferences, hiring postdocs).

How is it different from a typical Mitacs project?

A typical mitacs project requires the company to pay at least $7,500 and Mitacs will match $7,500. A student will receive at least $10,000 and the remaining $5,000 will be used for other project-related expenses.

For further questions, please send an email to Chelsea Hunter <> with reference to the Mitacs cluster.

Express your interest in joining the SFU-PMP Mitacs Cluster

Your problem statement falls in which research category of our Mitcas cluster proposal?