Essex Interns

Through our Essex Interns scheme, you gain access to a talented pool of students and recent graduates who can inject enthusiasm and fresh approaches into your business. They can help you plan or deliver a specific project, or simply provide extra resource for a busy workload. An intern could allow you to kick start a strategic project that might have been put on hold or not completed due to budget or time restrictions, and free up and support your permanent staff.

Taking on an intern can not only give your business a real boost but, at the same time, you'll be providing an intern with invaluable work experience which can considerably enhance their long-term employability.

How it works

Our team will proactively promote your vacancy and send you a list of applicants. This service is available if your internship is offered primarily to our University's students or graduates. If you have an internship that you are promoting to universities throughout the UK and abroad, please use our free CareerHub vacancy board to advertise it.

Internships can be part-time during term time and full-time during vacations and on graduation. They can vary in length from around six weeks to one year.

An internship must be a genuine paid work opportunity, which includes an element of learning and development. This may simply be the opportunity for the intern to gain a better understanding of the business environment, by allowing them to apply their knowledge in a workplace setting, or could involve the development of more comprehensive project-specific skills.

Interns must be paid at least the national minimum wage, but we would encourage you to offer a rate of pay appropriate to the calibre of candidates and the level of work undertaken.

Recruitment process

  1. Send us your completed registration form. The internship will need to be approved by the Internships Team. Decisions will be based upon national best practice guidelines and internal scheme criteria.
  2. If the internship is approved we will promote your vacancy for you and aim to provide you with a list of suitable applicants in around ten working days.
  3. You choose who to interview and whether to offer any of the applicants the position.
  4. Let us know who you're employing and we'll draw up an agreement that both you and the intern will sign.
  5. If we do not have any suitable applicants for you we will advise you of this and discuss steps we can take to attract more applications.
  6. We'll stay in touch during the internship to make sure it's running smoothly.

Get funding

Our University is participating in the Santander Universities Intern Programme, which connects talented graduates with some of the UK’s fastest growing, most exciting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Santander Universities is part-funding 3 month internships for final year students (at certain times of the year) and graduates from the last 2 years. For more information email or phone 01206 873729.

Benefits for your business

  • Increase productivity: Get short-term support and free your employees from side-projects, enabling them to focus on more creative or higher-level strategic tasks.
  • Gain fresh perspectives: Interns can bring new energy and fresh insights to your business, and new perspectives on problems. They can encourage innovation and bring new skills and knowledge to your workforce. A new and motivated member of staff can also invigorate your team, particularly within SMEs.
  • Source future employees: An internship programme is an effective year-round recruitment tool. Use summer and part-time term-time internships to provide an ongoing pipeline of potential future employees.
  • Test-drive talent: A graduate internship can serve as a trial period for recruitment to a permanent post, with no obligation.
  • Develop current staff: Graduate and student internships present opportunities for your existing team to develop their supervisory, management, mentoring and training skills.
  • Give back to the community: Hiring interns not only helps students in your community get started in their careers - it enhances the local workforce as a whole. Internships help to retain graduate talent in the local area.
  • Promote your business: Many top students apply for graduate jobs with big national firms, not always realising the career pathways available in local SMEs. When seeking internships, candidates prefer SMEs, feeling that they'll get more hands-on training and real experience in smaller organisations. Many then stay in the SME sector.

Case studies

  • Black Diamond Commodities Ltd

    Black Diamond Commodities Ltd is a brokerage company dealing in renewable fuels. Psychology graduate Leanne Walsham is now working full-time at the company after a successful internship.

    Greg Dunn and Leanne Walsham "I am happy to tell you that Leanne has made a wonderful start, turned the business upside down, shaken it and totally reorganised it, to the degree that I would be utterly sunk if she left! She is a wonderful advertisement for the University of Essex, and I will be delighted to volunteer to be a case study of how well the internship scheme works when the right student joins the right company."
    Greg Dunn, Managing Director, Black Diamond Commodities Ltd
  • The Minories Art Galleries

    Four of our students helped to prepare for a major art exhibition at The Minories Art Galleries. The exhibition, Art for Colchester: The 20th century collecting practices of the Victor Batte-Lay Trust, featured work gifted, loaned or bought by the Trust. It included pieces by John Constable, Camille Pissarro and Sir Eduardo Paolozzi among many others.

    The internships were made possible thanks to a partnership between our internship programme, the Minories management team and the Victor-Batte Lay Trust, the charitable organisation which owns the galleries.

    "We could not have done this exhibition without the interns. They got involved in every aspect of preparing for an exhibition."
    Lee Pugh, Manager, The Minories Art Galleries

Find out more

Contact us

Essex Interns Team

Employability and Careers Centre, University of Essex, Wivenhoe Park, Colchester, Essex, CO4 3SQ

Telephone 01206 873729


Work placements

You may also be interested in offering a work placement that an undergraduate or postgraduate student could complete as part of their course.