Where to Find Internships
There are various sites you can use to find out about current and upcoming internship opportunities in the UK, including:
Graduate Talent Pool
Run by gov.uk. All internships advertised on the website are paid. Internships are available for those who have graduated in the last three years and generally last between 1-12 months.
Internships are advertised by location. A detailed description of each internship provides information regarding pay, job description, and requirements. Internships for non-university students are also available on this site.
Offers information on internships in both the UK and abroad. NOTE: when performing the job search on the website, click the ‘work experience’ filter to see internships.
A job search website advertising current internships. Filters include being able to search by degree subject to placements available based on your skillset.
A website set up specifically to support students to find work. Internships are sorted by location and by sector, depending on your preferred method of searching. A featured companies list is also available.
A popular website with students looking for a range of employment opportunities. Precise information regarding the location, pay, and the company offering the internship is available.
Rate My Placement
The benefit of this website reviews. Along with information about current placement opportunities, you will be able to read reviews from other graduates that have completed internships in that role or within that company. This can help you understand what the role will be like and what skills you are likely to learn. Remember though, with internships, what you get out of the experience will likely depend on what you put into it.
If you are looking for an overseas internship opportunity, try one of the following:
This company has partnered with many universities and companies abroad to offer a wide range of international internships. The placements through this company are available in Hong Kong, Beijing, Barcelona, Madrid, Stockholm, Tokyo, and Montreal, amongst others.
Launched in 2011, CI now offers placements in 18 cities across 5 countries. The company has an excellent track record; students who complete internships through CI are hired, on average, three times more quickly and earn 30% more than other students who have just finished degrees.
This website offers information on internships all around the world. The ‘Recommended Programs’ and ‘Browse Top Intern Abroad Programs’ features allow you to see the best options available.
Looking for an opportunity in Vietnam, Japan, South Korea or China? Then this is the company to use. The company will help to organize your placement, accommodation, and visa, and will be there to support you throughout your stay – at a price, of course.
Alternatively, you can talk with the careers advisor at your school or university to find out about opportunities or, if there is a specific company you would like to intern for, try contacting them directly.
How to Apply for Internships
Most placements will require an application in the form of a CV and cover letter. Some may request for an application form to also be submitted, on which you will include much of the same information as your CV. After the initial application, you may be called for an interview before the employer decides whether to offer you the position.
Your CV is crucial. It is the first glimpse into who you are that the employer will get and it is vital that you use this document to share your educational history, relevant skills, and experience and it should, ideally, show some of your personality.
There are expectations regarding certain information that must be shared through a CV. For that reason, when writing your CV, be sure to include:
Job History (Starting With the Most Recent)
document any paid or unpaid work that you have done, particularly if it is relevant to the role that you are applying for. State the job title, the dates that you worked there and your key responsibilities. This not only helps employers to see the experience you have but also shows them whether you are a dedicated employee who is able to ‘stick at a job’. (NOTE: For this reason, on leaving university, be mindful not to hop from job to job). Include any part-time or voluntary work here also.
Education History (Starting With the Most Recent)
In this section, write the name of the educational institution, the years you attended, the type of qualification (e.g. BA, BSc, A-Level, GCSE) and the grade(s) you received.
Provide your name, nationality, and date of birth.
Your telephone number and email address, at least, should be included in your CV to allow future employers to contact you if they wish to invite you for an interview.
If you have completed any other courses or qualifications relevant to the placement, make sure that you include these on your CV. Note the name of the qualification, the awarding body and the date achieved.
If you have particular skills that would be essential to the role you are applying for, it is worth including.
There are also some recommended sections to include on your CV. These could be the extra touches to make you stand out from the sea of applicants:
If you have any sporting, music or artistic achievements, be sure to provide details.
Interests and Activities
There is some debate around whether this section should be included on a CV, but many people feel that it makes the CV more personable. Not all employers will necessarily pay attention to this section, but some employers in the UK are keen for it to be included.
Your CV needs to look professional and the information needs to be clear, but you can have some fun with the layout of the content. Many people nowadays wish to use a design that is a little less ‘standard’ than the traditional Microsoft Word formatted CV.
There are many apps available, such as Canva, which provide a range of customizable resume templates.