Supported Interns celebrate successful placements!
21 July 2022
A group of Foundation Learning students recently celebrated their success on supported internship placements with local companies during an awards ceremony held in the College’s Mulberry Bistro.
The event was an opportunity for learners to celebrate achievements during work placements with their employers and parents. The students have risen to the challenge during their placements, increasing in confidence and skills, with some being offered work at the end of their placement.
A supported internship is a structured programme of study undertaken by a young person aged 16-24 with learning difficulties or disabilities who has a real desire to work. It is a job specially adapted to meet the skills and ability of an individual whilst fulfilling a genuine business need for the employer. The supported internship programme combines unpaid work with an employer and time in college to gain other skills such as maths, English, ICT, Health and Safety and job search skills.
Students undertook their placements in a range of local companies, including Summerhouse Bakery, Redfern’s Cottage: Museum of Uttoxeter Life, Stretton Pre-school, Revl at Molson Coors, Nisa Local, The Greenhouse Centre, Bloomin’ Gardens & Landscapes, Uniq Recycling, Doggy Day Care and Doodle Style.
Alex Baker who undertook his supported internship at Summerhouse Bakery before being offered a job said: “I did a Pathways course at the College and it helped me to improve my communication and English skills. My tutor encouraged me to go on to a supported internship. When I started, I was nervous but as the weeks went on, I got used to everything. It’s good to have the chance to work somewhere and I’m really enjoying it. I never miss a day and I do my best to help.”
Alex’s employer mentor, Tracey Heap added: “We have enjoyed taking on a supported internship learner and Alex has received tremendous feedback from customers. I would encourage local businesses to get involved with supported internships – if you’ve got the ability to help someone and make a difference then you should definitely do it!”
Meanwhile, Megan Page who worked at Stretton Pre-school during her supported internship said: “I am most proud of being on time to my placement and college, and making friends on the first day of the supported internship. I think my employer would say that I am kind, helpful and independent.”
Megan’s employer mentor and manager of Stretton Pre-School, Tracey Banton said: “Megan’s confidence has improved a lot since she has been working at Pre-school. She always works hard and works well with all the children and staff. It has been really useful for our staff here to work with Megan too; she sometimes sees things or does things differently and it is great for us all to learn different ways of working. The children all love her as well; that’s the most important thing for us!”
Supported internships not only benefit the students taking part but employers gain additional resource for their team. Speaking about Supported Internships, Lee Buckler, Recycling Director for Uniq Recycling said: “Having supported Internship learners has given the students an opportunity to develop their skills whilst also being a valuable asset to our business. We have been able to offer a position in our company as a result. We would highly recommend this to other businesses who are thinking of taking on a student.”
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