Funded by


Fuse Internships programmes are focused on helping eligible businesses access paid-for help and support to enable them to develop their innovation capacity and scope.

Support Summary

Funded internships are now available to help North East based SMEs/organisations develop their ‘innovation capacity’.

Funded by Creative Fuse North East (CFNE) an internship provides for a recent graduate or a current Masters student to work on a defined ‘task and finish’ project that is co-developed with a SME* business.

Examples of projects could include:

  • developing new products / services;
  • helping to access new markets;
  • supporting business owners/ managers with organisational or capacity development;
  • driving new marketing and communications or audience/customer engagement approaches.


*Defined as an enterprise employing fewer than 250 employees and has either an annual balance sheet total not exceeding 43 million euros or an annual turnover not exceeding 50 million euros.

The Creative Fuse Team at Newcastle University will be delivering a number of their internships in partnership with the North of Tyne Combined Authority, through their North of Tyne Culture and Creative Investment Programme with Creative UK.


Typically ranging from 4- 12 weeks.


To December 2022

Being delivered by

Newcastle University
Northumbria University
Teesside University
University of Sunderland

Quick Facts

The intern is employed by the SME/organisation – this can be on a full-time or substantive part time basis – with the core costs met by Creative Fuse funding.

Additional academic and project support/expertise is also included as part of the internship, supporting and overseeing the approach and delivery of the internship project.

You may be eligible if you are a small to medium sized enterprise or are a Social Enterprise or Community Interest Company within the North East.

The Process

An example of the internship process at Newcastle University. Please note this may differ between partner universities.

  1. Interested SMEs/organisations fill out a simple ‘expression of interest’ form.
  2. CFNE develop a project/brief with the eligible organisation to advertise and recruit the intern.
  3. Graduates/Masters students apply for the advertised role. Successful applicants are then contacted with an invite to interview.
  4. Once the successful candidate accepts, a start date is agreed, and the Employment Contract is issued by the organisation.
  5. The organisation completes and signs the Grant Agreement Form / Contract.
  6. The intern then begins work and an academic/CFNE team member would also typically visit the SME to support the internship.
  7. A mid- and end-point review will be held including a member of the team, the organisation, the academic and the intern.
  8. Upon completion, the SME/organisation will meet with a member of the CFNE team to review the outcomes from the internship and get feedback.

What does it look like?

We hosted a virtual Internships Masterclass with the Creative UK North of Tyne Culture & Creative Investment teams – catch up here!

This masterclass gave an overview of the Creative Fuse Internship Programme, including:

  • what benefits an intern can bring to your business;
  • how businesses can apply for the internship programme;
  • eligibility criteria and requirements of hosting a fuse intern;
  • the application and development process.

Want to find out more?

Please email for further information and an expression of interest from.