Results from a recent survey conducted by Graduate Advantage prove that internships do create jobs for graduates. Unemployment among recent graduates has risen significantly in recent years resulting in more and more graduates are turning to internships when venturing into the real world.
Recent BBC statistics show that applications have soared, with an average of 69 people chasing each graduate job. Experience is becoming the deciding factor in who gets their foot in the door – and that’s where an internship can make all the difference. Of the interns surveyed by Graduate Advantage, 83 per cent are now employed and 96 percent of those are either in permanent employment or are on a long term contract.
Internships provide the perfect platform for graduates to gain the all important experience required to stand out from the crowd and can provide excellent career opportunities. The survey found a staggering 41% of interns are still working with their internship organisation. Survey respondent, Michelle Kendall gave the following feedback, “I had been unemployed for a number of months before I found Graduate Advantage, then within weeks I had a job. I started out 9 months ago with a 3 month graduate position and I have now been promoted through the company”
Mitesh Soma, Company Director for Chemist Direct took on an interntwo years ago when the company was growing and recognised the benefits of bringing graduates on board. Mitesh has seen his intern come full circle from the recruited to the recruiter, “Harvey came into the company with a hunger to achieve and do well. Right from the start I saw he had passion and enthusiasm. Initially his placement was involved in product and category development, this included adding on new lines, improving and developing existing categories as well as initiating new ideas to enhance the website. The role however was developing day-by-day and Harvey is now actively recruiting for graduates like him to come into the company and develop in the same manner”
Internship provider, Graduate Advantage have now placed over 1500 students / graduates into companies across the West Midlands and have seen the extent to which employers have benefited from the scheme. Nicola Turner, programme director was not surprised by the figures saying: “The survey results back up what we hear anecdotally, that businesses are thinking creatively about new talent and they see the application of new grad skills to their businesses. Clearly 41% of these interns are paying for themselves in a short space of time”
Graduate Advantage arranges paid and unpaid internships. It is a not-for-profit organisation established in 2003 to build and improve links between the business community and the student and graduate population in the region. The scheme is supported by a consortium of 12 universities, led by Aston University. By providing high calibre work placements for graduates, the team is supporting businesses during the economic downturn and at the same time encouraging the talent to stay within the region.
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*Figures are based on a survey of 36 respondents in week commencing 12.07.2010