STEM Graduates into Business

Let’s plan for the future 

We are here to help make 2021 more positive for your business. With incentive payments of up to £3,600, small and medium-sized businesses in Devon can get financial and recruitment support to hire a STEM graduate. Providing flexibility to businesses, funding for three, six, nine and 12 month internships are available, making it the perfect way to fill skills gaps and grow your team.

“We are so glad we made the decision to work with the STEM Graduates into Business team to achieve such a positive outcome for our business, even during a pandemic.” Victoria Davies, HR Manager, Vualto

Incentive payments up to £3,600

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Devon can recruit skilled, recent graduates within the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) fields and receive incentive payments of up to £3,600.

The STEM Graduates into Business project, which is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), supports SMEs to recruit recent graduates with fresh, innovative ideas and the drive to develop professionally. Employed as a paid-intern for up to 12 months, STEM Graduates into Business can offer flexibility to small and medium businesses looking to meet changing market demands.

STEM and beyond 

STEM Graduates into Business has supported over 35 SMEs in Devon to successfully recruit recent STEM graduates to support their business and fill emerging skills gaps. Alongside traditional STEM occupations, we can help you to find graduates in a number of different roles including:

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • augmented reality
  • CAD
  • new media
  • web design
  • 3D printing
  • and any other position with an emphasis on innovation, research or development.

Graduates can work remotely if needed and provide that extra work power for your business. The project provides access to determined graduates with fresh, innovative ideas and the drive to develop professionally.

Available for a limited time only

Funding is provided by the European Regional Development fund and secured after the UK formally leaves the European Union on 18 January. The project will run until March 2022.

However, there is a limited time for businesses to be able to access this funding and recruitment support, including:

  • free advertising on regional and national graduate platforms
  • promotion of your vacancies through exclusive University of Plymouth and strategic partner channels
  • coordination of the application process including the creation of an eye-catching advert.
  • no recruitment fee.

Get in touch by emailing stem-graduates@plymouth.ac.uk to find out more.

Recruiting during a pandemic

Leaving the Lab: Sunrise Setting succeed with Science graduates

“Whilst we have good ties with the University and access to the graduate market, the opportunity to work with the STEM Graduates into Business project allowed us to access valuable financial grants and take advantage of the support available through the recruitment process, which can often be lengthy and time-consuming. Working with the STEM Graduates team certainly saved us time and still provided us with a valuable employee in Kurtis.” Jessica Stock, Director, Sunrise Setting

Read more about Sunrise Setting

Employers we work with...


Not in a position to recruit?  

Access expert advice on recruiting graduates in the future and receive further business support from the University’s Careers Service to help you through this time. 

Stay in contact with the graduate market for the future and quickly access potential future recruits when the time is right for you. Complete the expression of interest form and be top of the list to receive recruitment support in the future.


For STEM graduates

Benefits of working for an SME

There are over 5,000 SMEs across Devon that bring much to the local economy in terms of business output and employment. Graduates can overlook them in favour of large, well-known companies and miss out on the unique experience that working with an SME can provide. Working for an SME has many benefits including:
  • opportunities to work on key projects from the start
  • a varied workload in a more personable working environment
  • the potential of being given responsibility from an early stage
  • exposure to cutting-edge innovations and new-to-market products
  • a better chance to get noticed for your achievements by management
  • gaining exposure across the wider business, providing you with a more rounded experience.

Register your interest now and search job opportunities.

Meet the team

Our partners

Project funding

STEM Graduates into Business is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Utilising this funding, the project aims to:

  • address SME innovation challenges through graduate internships focused on transformational business projects
  • raise leadership and management capability levels in SMEs, particularly regarding recruitment and employment
  • create a growing network of graduate employing SMEs across the area, leading to longer-term opportunities for graduates and their retention in the local economy.

This project will run until 30 March 2022, regardless of Britain’s departure from the European Union. Funding has been awarded through the European Structural and Investments Fund Programme which is committed until the end of 2023.

More information about University of Plymouth projects funded by the European Development Fund