Paid Internships – University of Chester Santander Small MediumEnterprise (SME) Intern Programme

You may have noticed last week that we advertised vacancies for a Marketing Assistant and a Database Developer with two Warrington-based companies.

We thought it might be useful to tell you more about the University of Chester Santander Small Medium Enterprise (SME) Intern Programme these vacancies are part of, particularly as we explained in a previous post that ‘Internship’ can have various meanings:

The University of Chester Santander Small Medium Enterprise (SME) Intern Programme is a programme which involves Santander providing funding to enable Small or Medium Sized companies (those with under 250 employees) to recruit a final year student or graduate from their local university on a three month paid internship.

According to research by Santander, almost one quarter of graduates are employed by SMEs who provide more than 59% of private sector employment within the UK. However here in Careers and Employability, we find that working for an SME is often not an option many students and graduates consider, and SMEs often don’t realise the benefits they could gain from employing graduates (fresh ideas, analytical skills e.t.c.)

Initiatives such as Graduate Head Start, Work Based Learning, Unite with Business and the Santander Intern Programme can provide useful tools for introducing students/graduates and SMEs to each other, offering useful work experience to students and graduates and helping SMEs with recruitment and business growth.

How the University of Chester Santander Small Medium Enterprise (SME) Intern Programme works:

· The University of Chester Santander Internships are open to all final year undergraduate, postgraduate and research students of the University of Chester and individuals who have graduated from the University within the last two years.

· Each intern receives a minimum salary of £1000 per month

· Interns might work on a single specific project during their placement, or the internship might provide a broader overview of the work within a sector and the skills required

· Activities also might include undertaking research, shadowing senior members of staff, or working on smaller projects with different teams.

· Internship vacancies are advertised on our vacancy portal with details of how to apply.

Although the three month internships don’t oblige an employer to offer longer-term work to their intern, the internships are a great opportunity for final year students and graduates to gain experience and in some cases they do lead to further opportunities.

One graduate who recently took part in the programme is Sam Viller, Sports Journalism Graduate, who completed an internship with JDG media.

“I didn’t think it would be possible to find work in sports journalism so quickly after completing my degree, especially as it’s such a competitive job market. The internship opportunity is a fantastic way for me to prove my ability and hopefully be kept on in a permanent position afterwards.”

To read Sam’s full case study:

If you’d like to know more about The University of Chester Santander Small Medium Enterprise (SME) Intern Programme or would like support with your application, just get in touch: careers


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