The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Becoming an intern

Ever wondered what life as an undergraduate intern is like? Dana Fowles tells us about her experience at PageGroup

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Experience; the magic word uttered at every undergraduate career talk. We students are constantly reminded that our degrees aren’t enough to secure the jobs of our dreams. On the other hand, practice in the real world is CV gold. The question is where can you find something that a) fits in with your studies and b) provides you with those invaluable transferrable skills? For me, it was PageGroup.

PageGroup is a worldwide leading specialist recruitment company and I’ve been interning at its Manchester office within the Michael Page Engineering & Manufacturing brand since September 2013. It’s that time of year when Page recruits for its summer and term-time internships, along with the graduate programme. So if you’re an enthusiastic, target driven person, get in touch.

My team were really welcoming from day one and the atmosphere in the office is great; one of my favourite perks is the drinks trolley that comes around towards the end of the day each Friday! I’m required to work a minimum of eight hours a week, which slots nicely into my third year English Literature timetable. PageGroup pay all of its interns a competitive wage; being rewarded for my time is refreshing when other companies are taking advantage of students by expecting them to work for free. Page is flexible when it comes to taking holiday and time off during exam periods, and on the flip side there are always more hours available if you fancy earning a bit of extra cash.

The projects I’ve been given have helped to improve my communication and team working skills, as well as develop my commercial awareness of the industry. I definitely don’t spend all day making tea and coffee. For instance, one of the typical tasks given to me by my manager is to help consultants source new candidates for roles. This involves looking at example CVs and researching the job, the client and whole market in detail. I scan job sites for potential candidates who fit the desired criteria and follow up with phone calls to discuss the opportunities with them. A large part of my job is speaking to people to determine what they want from their career and how Page can help them to achieve this. Knowing that you are helping people in their future career is really rewarding.

In addition to their internship opportunities, Page recruit around 80 graduates each year. The programme has helped over 300 graduates develop their careers as business leaders, many of whom are now managers and directors at Page. They are currently looking for their next round of grads — have a look at the Graduate Scrapbook to find out more and apply.

Find out more about PageGroup’s graduate and intern programmes and the opportunities on offer.