Many companies now offer an internship scheme for students, as this is beneficial to both the organisation and the student employee.
These internship schemes are usually offered by major graduate recruiters particularly in the business, finance, retail, law, engineering and IT sectors.
Opportunities generally offer paid work for between 1-4 months, usually taking place over the summer. Closing dates are generally around January/March but can be earlier.
If the career area you want to work in doesn’t offer an established internship scheme, or if you are keen to work for a local Small Medium Enterprise (SME), then read our advice on making your own internship.
Internship schemes and work experience opportunities
You can look for advertised internship and vacation schemes, a selection of useful jobsites are provided below:
- My Purple Door Jobs Board occasionally provides information on summer work experience opportunities. Sign up here to access your profile and set preferences to get notified about new opportunities.
- Graduate Prospects allows you to search for a range of opportunities, including internships and placements, by keyword and region.
- TARGETjobs also has a wealth of work experience schemes including internships by sector, searchable by region and duration.
- Rate My Placement is a great resource to see what internship schemes are highly rated by previous students.
- AnyIntern offers information on a wide range of internships in the UK, ranging from Engineering, Accounting, Fashion, Finance and much more.
- All About Careers is a major Jobs Board focused on internship opportunities.
- Top Internships is another site dedicated to undergraduate and graduate internships and placements. Search internship and placement programmes from graduate recruiters across multiple sectors.
- Student Ladder is a site detailing over 2500 work placements, graduate schemes & internship opportunities for 16-24 year old students.
- Milkround is another major recruitment site that provides information on hundreds of internships and work experience opportunities across the UK and Worldwide.
- JobisJob is a job search engine site which details national and international internship and work experience opportunities. It also allows you to customise your job hunt by saving filters and job offers and creating email and RSS feed alerts which notify you of new opportunities in your chosen field.
- W4MP if your course is focused on politics, or you are interested in getting into politics, working for an MP can be a great experience. Use this site for information and resources in getting into this competitive internship type.
- Intern Avenue is a great hiring platform designed to connect students and graduates seeking internships with employers instantly. The platform has been singled out as a highly needed innovation in the internship space and has been featured by the Financial Times, CNN, the BBC and Channel Four.
- StudentJob details a range of internships across every industry.
- British Council runs and helps organise a series of internships around the world and across a variety of sectors.
- Graduate-jobs.com is a site aimed at promoting internships and work placement opportunities to students and graduates.
Finding Work Experience
You may be looking for specific work experience in a particular sector. If so, Purple Door can help! We have provided advice on 'getting experience' for a wide range of career areas, visit our getting into your chosen sector page to access these guides. In addition we have the following downloadable PDF guides:
- Finding Work Experience in Media
- Finding Work Experience in the Environmental Sector
- Finding Work Experience in IT/Computing
- Finding Work Experience in Engineering
- Finding Work Experience in Psychology
- Summer Internships & Work Experience
These guides provide valuable information and advice with links to websites that advertise opportunities in your chosen career area.
If the career you are interested in is not listed, you can still search by coming into Purple Door to use our sector guides to find jobsboards and company information. Our friendly staff can also provide expert advice on gaining work experience.
While recruitment agencies are unlikely to have vacancies advertised as internships, they may have short-term contract work that could be suitable.
The Agency Central website helps you find job websites and recruitment agencies that are tailored to your interests and location.
You can also find further information on where to look for opportunities in our guide to vacancy sources.