For many students, gaining work experience in London is an excellent way of improving English language skills in a working environment, while gaining valuable experience of professional life. It provides our students with excellent practise situations and enables them to fine tune their English language skills in a real life environment.
At St George International we offer professional work experience in companies located in London. Professional internships provide unpaid professional work experience in an English speaking environment in the area of the candidates' studies, previous experience and / or career aspirations. Placements are available to EU citizens only and add considerable status to a CV and are excellent for students' long-terms career prospects.
Work experience placements are available in a wide range of business sectors - marketing, finance and IT are amongst the most popular placements, but most other business areas can be catered for. An internship can be taken in combination with an English language course at our school in Central London, or, for students with excellent English language skills, on its own.
Most internships can be started any Monday and will last minimum 4 weeks, but in exceptional circumstances, shorter periods can be arranged. Candidates should remember, however, that most employers will only give challenging tasks to long-terms interns (at least 12 week stays) and that students arriving for shorter periods are likely to be given general and administrative tasks. The maximum length of stay is 6 months. Candidates will have to travel to work by public transport for distances up to 1 hour.
During the period of work experience, interns may be given a variety of tasks of different kinds - ranging from challenging project work to routine administrative tasks. Often, interns may feel that the level of responsibility they are given is lower than they would expect in their home country - but should remember that, especially at the start of their internship, they need to prove themselves before being given more complex jobs. In all cases, interns should show flexibility and enthusiasm together with a real desire to learn.
Interns should also understand that, although their primary objective is to learn, an internship is not a formal training course and they will not be assigned to a "training manager". As a "volunteer", interns will not be paid. However, many companies will cover candidates' travel expenses, and some candidates, especially graduates with excellent English language skills and/or experience, may receive a small stipend.
Above all, candidates should remember that while they are learning linguistic and professional skills, host-companies also expect interns to work hard and contribute as any employee might.