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Working connections

Internships are an amazingly important opportunity for recent graduates to gain experience of the working world and to connect with employers that they might never otherwise meet. Unfortunately internships can be problematic. Recent press reports have claimed that they are too often the preserve of graduates from wealthy families and can sometimes be nothing more than a source of free labour for employers.

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I am now able to look forward to a career in an area that I really enjoybut previously would likely not have had the skill set to enter so it has been a tremendous benefit to my plans.

This is why Warwick has launched the Warwick Graduate Internships Programme. This new scheme aims to level the playing field and to give recent graduates from all backgrounds the opportunity to benefit from an 8-12 week internship. It will ensure that both the intern and the employer benefit from the internship.

Funded by the University with support from donations, the programme assists employers in the UK in engaging recent graduates and aims to demonstrate the benefits of employing Warwick graduates. In order to ensure that the internship is attractive to the employer and the graduate, the University pays the graduate on behalf of the employer. The University also liaises with all parties throughout the placement process to ensure it runs as smoothly as possible and that everyone is benefiting. Graduates are also debriefed after the placement so that the employer gets valuable feedback.

The programme has been designed to require minimal administration from the employer and offers a high level of support throughout. The scheme is up and running and we’re now looking for more employers who can offer internships. As our staunchest advocates we’re hoping that alumni will be keen to get involved with the programme. We know that most of our unemployed graduates are high achievers based in the South East, London and the East and West Midlands so we are particularly keen to hear from employers in those areas but we are open to offers from across the UK.

Of course, whatever we say here the real proof of the impact of the Warwick Graduate Internships Programme is in what its participants say about it. Recent graduates have told us that:

I have learned a huge programming skill set, I have developed a much greater knowledge of the inner working of business in general and specifically small or start-up businesses so overall I feel it has been hugely successful.

I am now able to look forward to a career in an area that I really enjoy but previously would likely not have had the skill set to enter so it has been a tremendous benefit to my plans.”

I learnt that I have definitely chosen the right career path for me; I have proved myself able to learn things quickly and to adapt well to new situations. I have learnt that I am very motivated when I have the right motivation. I have also rediscovered the confidence I had, which had been gradually disappearing following repeated unsuccessful job applications.

It was an excellent experience! It has been the best move I could have ever possibly imagined. I really have to thank the Warwick Graduate Internships programme for allowing me to follow my passion and have a dream job at such a young age. Thank you so much!”

From having zero practical experience in an engineering environment to working with one of the top companies in engineering. I have had the opportunity to work on a wide range of projects, therefore allowing me to identify the type of work that I would enjoy and take on as a graduate in future.

If you think that you or your organisation could offer a recent graduate an internship (at no cost to you), visit the WGIP webpages to find out more.


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