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85% of students don’t feel supported in search for summer internships

In a recent survey carried out by Boar News, 85% of students said that Warwick University did not help them at all when securing a summer internship.

The survey, which consisted mainly of second and third-year Humanities and Social Science students, found that out of the 57% who interned over the summer, only nine respondents secured their placements through career fairs or events.

The vast majority found internships through online research or personal connections.

The most popular sectors were banking and finance, closely followed by media, consumer and technology – while a number of students interned at “Big Four” firms KPMG and EY.

A recurring criticism was that while the University promotes positions in finance and consultancy, students are having a far harder time finding experience in jobs that better suit their course or career interests.

The overwhelming majority of opinions were in favour of internships, citing their usefulness in finding paid employment.

While over 30% of respondents interned over the whole summer, 36% were neither offered a full-time job nor the option to return as an intern. However, a remaining 34% were offered a job and 27% were invited to return as interns.

64% were paid during the length of their internship, and 68% ranked their experience as an eight out of ten or higher.

Of the 59 summer employers mentioned by the respondents, just over half were based in the UK, with 8 based in the EU, a further 10 in the United States and 6 in Asia. Interns from the finance and consumer sectors were especially involved with international firms.

The overwhelming majority of opinions were positively in favour of internships, citing their usefulness in finding paid employment in the future, and the valuable insight they can give into a chosen career sector.

However, over a third of respondents also expressed doubts as to whether the process is necessary or worthwhile, and their worries about the high-pressured, competitive nature of the institution.

The difficult of finding paid positions was also mentioned, especially in certain sectors, which shuts off a number of opportunities to those who cannot afford them.

Over a third of respondents also expressed doubts as to whether the process is necessary or worthwhile.

When asked about their general feelings towards internships, student opinions varied considerably. One anonymous user said: “They’re amazing. Really helpful in giving you an insight into what working life is really like and a chance to find out if that sector really is for you.”

Another student commented: “The university does not do enough to advertise a range of internships. We are only ever emailed about consulting.

“Although the capitalistic mafia currently in charge of Warwick seems determined to turn everyone into corporate machines, interested only in economic growth and material gain, there are other options. These should be pushed.”

Another added: “More chance of pigs flying than getting one.”

This comes a week after attempts to pass draft legislation to ban unpaid internships and introduce the minimum wage were blocked in the House of Commons by business minister Margot James.


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