Internships & Programs

Programs Overview

Startup Internship & Fellowship
Experience what it is like to work in a fast-paced innovative company

What to expect:
  • Self-paced: 8-12 weeks Internship with at least 14 hours per week with your host company
  • Cohort-based: Weekly 1 hour Fellowship session on employability and entrepreneurship with guest speakers and industry mentors
  • Online learning resources, weekly reflections and team-based activities

Venture Investment (VC) Fellowship
Experience what it is like to work at a VC firm or build an investable startup

What to expect:
  • Cohort-based: Weekly 1 hour session on topics-VC 101, due diligence, financial modelling, valuation from investors and founders
  • Self-paced: Weekly 2-3 hours  to work on deal investment memo & online learning materials
  • Final Deliverable: Create & Pitch Deal Investment Memo

Founder Fellowship
Kickstart your founder journey or startup growth with tools, skillset and connections

What to expect:
  • Weekly founders’ roundtable with guest speakers and investors on startup fundamentals such as customer validation, milestone setting, pitching, fundraising
  • Self-paced: Weekly 2-3 hours  to work on your startup & online learning materials
  • Final Deliverable: Pitch your Startup Idea

Deep-Tech Fellowship
For Researchers and Deep-tech Founders + those interested to work with deep-tech startups

What to expect:
  • Weekly session on commercialisation and venture creation fundamentals, topics include market analysis, refine value proposition, milestone setting- tech, market, funding, pitching, fundraising
  • Self-paced: Weekly 2-3 hours  to work on your research idea & online learning materials
  • Final Deliverable: Pitch your Impact Memo

Internship Experience areas

  • Business Analyst
  • Data Analyst/Scientist
  • Design (UI/UX)
  • Marketing
  • Sales & PR
  • Developer/Programme
  • Venture Capital/ Startup Investment
  • Pitch us your dream!

What to Expect-Illume Startup Internship & Fellowship

Application & Selection


Applications are considered on a rolling basis. If you are selected, you will hear back within 2 weeks of your application lodgement.


We carefully match you with a startup that aligns with your skills, interests, and career goals. We believe in creating synergies that benefit both interns and startups.


Is it ever too early to approach the Illume Foundation about placements?

It’s never too early to reach out. In fact, most of students come to us in their first year or second year. We get excited to see this because it means you’re thinking about your career early on and ready by the time you graduate.

What if I’ve already had placements before, can I still apply for an Illume placement?

Yes, you absolutely can. If you are currently working, you can still apply for Illume fellowship, esp if you are exploring a new career path.


I am looking for a job, does Illume provide job opportunities?

Yes. Illume offers Graduate Paid Placements which are usually a minimum 1 year program with further extension depending on availability. Companies in Illume Network are also hiring for short term and long-term roles.  Placements are usually first step to securing job with Illume startups.

What types of placements are available through the Illume Foundation?

Paid Placements: Students get paid for undertaking placements. 30-40% of our internships are paid placements and are paid at entry level standard rate as per FairWork Act. Fellows from our paid placements are usually offered 1 year  role with further extension.

Unpaid Placements: These placements are offered as Course-Credit Placements if you are enrolled in a course and eligible for course credit internships. For those who have already graduated and early professionals, we offer ‘Traineeship’ that allows you to get experience at a startup. In addition, they also attend weekly training sessions at Illume Foundation. 

*Traineeship constitutes a learning component and training in the organisation and is not an employment.

Volunteering Opportunities: In exceptional cases and on a case-by-case basis, Illume can offer volunteering opportunities at a not for profit (nfp) or charitable organisations. This represents <10%.

Illume focuses on Startup experience and there are many wonderful nfp and charities that you can seek outside of Illume Foundation. Find them here

Do you provide placement experience for people outside of Australia?

Yes, we do. Check program eligibility page for more details.

Can I get a paid placement and do it for course credit?
Yes, you can absolutely can. You must show the evidence of course credit approval before the start of the program.

How do you help students or graduates get their first job?

Illume provides experience at a startup, mentorship and opportunities to expand your network.

Illume also provides job opportunities in the hidden job market through advocacy and reference.

Once you are part of Illume Fellowship, you’re part of Illume Family for life

Does Illume charge me for placement?

As a social enterprise, we’re driven to provide experiential learning to accelerate career journey for all. Hence our programs are offered at a hugely subsidised cost often funded through philanthropic or government grants.  We also provide ‘full scholarship’ to talented students and graduates from under-represented communities such as Indigenous backgrounds, rural communities. Scholarships are assessed case by case basis.

Why does Illume charge program fees?

A nominal program fee enables Illume to provide quality placements, run events and engagement activities and take care of admin cost, insurance and technology access.

What does Illume look for in the applicants?

Our fellows embody our values:

Intellectual Curiosity


Pay It Forward

Mental Resilience

Having a growth mindset & be inquisitive about learning

Doing the right thing in the right way

Give back to our community & support one another

See challenges as opportunities and failures as learning experiences

  1. We look for individuals who have Growth Mindset (ability to learn). Learn more about Growth Mindset by Carol Dweck here
  2.  Ability to get things done!

Do I need to have previous work experience in the field if I am applying for the placement?

No. Our goal is to help you get your first work experience- so no! 

What is your selection process and how long does it take?

  • Step 1: Apply via our programs page
  • Step 2: Interview with Illume team
  • Step 3: Be Matched to a company
  • Step 4: Interview with the host company
  • Step 5: Start your placement and attend weekly sessions for Fellowship.

* Note depending on the program, the selection process might differ. Refer programs page about the exact process. 

How often does the placement run?

Placements are run twice every month.

Can I be considered again, if I was unable to find a match or missed the placement deadline?
Yes, we ask you to apply again to be considered for the next placement opportunity.

Do I get to select the company before being matched?

No, all companies are matched by Illume. We do consider your background, interest and goals to match you with the company. You have the option to decline the offer if you feel there was no good fit between you and the company.

What is Illume  Foundation and why is it a social enterprise?

Illume Foundation is a socially focused talent accelerator that supports students, graduates and early-stage founders develop their entrepreneurial and employability skills so they can launch their career or venture faster than they normally would.

Our mission is to catalyse innovation and entrepreneurship through talent development.

We work with startups, universities and industry to  ‘make Opportunities Accessible and breaking the No Experience No Job Cycle’. We offer fully funded scholarship programs for students from Indigenous and first nations background and those surviving hardships. 

We’re aligned with 7 of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Learn more about the UNSD Goals here

  • Goal 1: No Poverty: Through dedicated programs, initiatives and scholarships targeted to underrepresented communities and those historically have been marginalised thus ‘breaking the No Experience No Job Cycle’
  • Goal 4: Quality Education: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
  • Goal 5: Gender Equality: Achieve gender equality and participation through dedicated programs
  • Goal 8: Decent Work & Economic Growth: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
  • Goal 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: Build resilient future by collaborating with industry, academic and government to foster innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Goal 10: Reduce inequality through dedicated programs and participation opportunities
  • Goal 17: Partnerships for the Goals: Collaborate with industry, academia and government to foster global entrepreneurial ecosystem

Why does Illume focus on Startup Internships?
A startup is a company or business typically in the early stages of its development that uses innovation and/or technology to scale rapidly and capture global markets.

As such startups focus on experimentation – continuously testing, iterating, and learning. This provides a training ground for entrepreneurial thinking, critical problem solving and innovative mindset. An internship at a startup can provide you with a wealth of experience. 

Does Illume work with big companies? 

While our placements and internships are focused on startups, our fellows have gone on to join firms like PwC, Deloitte, Accenture post Fellowship.

Our focus to work with startups comes from our mission to foster the startup ecosystem. We believe many of the big companies have the resources, manpower and brand to attract talent while startups need every bit of support, especially during the early days of their operations. 

We do hope to collaborate with big companies, particularly innovative and technology companies as we believe ecosystem fosters when we all collaborate.

What’s it Like to Work with Illume Startups?
Read Illume Fellow’s (Bang An Duong)  experience on Startup Internship

‘The Road Less Travelled: A Plunge into Startups with Startup Gippsland’

Scroll to Top