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Intern 24 work experience is a wrap!

Maddie Brindley-Slater
21 May 2024

After six months in the making, and with nearly double the cohort, we are thrilled to announce that Intern 24’s work experience week has been a success!

For this innovative programme, 40 aspiring 16-17 year old sixth form students from South Bank University Academy, Sedgehill Academy and St John’s Baptist School were paired with mentors from Kantar, Efficio, Blackbullion, IBM, Chain IQ and Hays back in March, ahead of the work experience week in May.

First conceptualised by Kantar in 2022 with just five students, the programme has seen year on year growth. This year, the cohort increased from 25 in 2023, to 40 students. With guidance and support from their mentors, these talented young people all took their first tentative steps towards their future careers.

Wiseup had the pleasure of facilitating the mentoring element of the programme, including designing and hosting a mentor training workshop with one of our experts, matching mentor-mentee pairs (based on interests, subjects studied and career aspirations), and managing the mentoring schedule for the programme.

What is Intern 24?

Intern 24 is a multi-business programme that combines mentoring and work placements to provide young people with their first experience of the workplace. We’ve partnered with Kantar, IBM, Efficio, and Hays for a second year in a row, and were joined by Blackbullion and Chain IQ for 2024. As a group partnership, we’ve been able to provide students with a unique window into their future careers.

With the mentor companies hailing from varying sectors, ranging from IT to recruitment, the students have been able to gain a feel for what a typical working day might look like in a number of areas. Taking this one step further, each partner company prepared talks for students across the whole programme, so no matter which company they were based in, they could get a feel for a variety of business operations.

Intern 24 work experience 2

Initial mentoring sessions

With a rich background successfully managing mentoring relationships, we used our expertise to pair mentors and mentees to ensure each match was tailored to each student's interests and needs. Once paired, all participants came together for an exciting launch day, held at Kantar’s offices in March. The launch allowed the three schools to come together to gain an understanding of the programme, and to take part in their first mentoring sessions in person.

Following on from their initial face to face mentor session, each pair met virtually for another session in the lead up to their work experience week. Answering any questions and preparing them for the experience ahead, their second mentoring session paved the way for alleviating any concerns and boosting their confidence in the run up to their placement.

Intern 24 work experience 1

The work experience week

Kicking off on the 13th May, the students entered the working environment with zeal, ready to see what the week ahead of them had in store. Starting with introductions and what to expect from the week, the mentees were welcomed into each respective office, before setting out on their tasks and carefully curated itineraries for the week.

One of the core goals of the programme was to allow students to engage in various activities designed to enhance their professional skills and knowledge. Giving them a wide variety of tasks allowed the students to take lots away from the programme, with activities including:

- Talks from a wide range of departments

- Workshops for setting up a LinkedIn profile & CV writing

- Typical day in the life tasks

- Additional face to face mentoring sessions

As part of the multi business partnership, each company dedicated time to hold talks at the other company’s offices, allowing the students to leave the programme feeling they had a wide range of insights and expertise to draw upon.

By the end of the week, the students gained a fantastic understanding of how their careers might look, whilst allowing them to work on a range of key skills to take away with them, including team work, communication and creative problem solving.

Intern 24 work experience 3

Final stages of the programme

In the wake of the work experience, the students have provided lots of positive feedback, with many stating an improvement in their confidence levels. A large percentage of the students also came away with a greater understanding of their post-education options.

The students will now take part in their final mentoring sessions before the end of this academic year, allowing them to look towards their future, whilst reflecting on all their learnings and newfound confidence.

We’re sure that the students will approach their final year of sixth form in September with excitement and fresh inspiration for what’s ahead. It’s an honour being a part of such a groundbreaking programme alongside some of the UK’s most forward-thinking companies. We can’t wait to see what’s next for these talented individuals!

We deliver work placement and mentoring programmes designed to demystify the world of work, whilst opening new doorways to students who may not have the networks to secure such placements. If you’d like to learn more about taking part in your own programme, contact a member of our team.

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