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How would you like to gain real life experience working for a small or medium sized enterprise and get paid for it?

Now, more than ever, it’s important to start getting work-related experience from year one, to build confidence, enhance your CV and gain an advantage in the labour market.


This summer, UCL Advances is offering 120 students the exciting chance to work in SMEs across London. This is an ideal opportunity to gain credible work experience and pick up entrepreneurial skills directly from small business owners. The internships are open to any UCL students or recent graduates (those who were awarded their degree in 2013) and will last for 8 or 12 weeks over the summer.

In addition to new skills and experience to add to your CV, you will also be paid a tax-free training allowance of £250 per week for the full time internship with the SME.

What is an SME?

An SME is a Small or Medium-sized Enterprise, defined as employing fewer than 250 people and can include start ups, social enterprise and charities. SMEs are an important growth area for graduate recruitment. New and upcoming businesses tend to be SMEs and they cover most business sectors.

Advantages of working for an SME

If you have never considered the prospect of working for an SME or even setting up your own business, the Summer Internship Programme will give you a good taste of what it could be like.

There was a lack of strategy and direction which I helped to address, bringing a fresh perspective. Hopefully everything is in place now for Accelerator to turn a greater profit and establish itself as an industry leader. My time at Accelerator has proved vital in helping me to secure a job which I wouldn't have been able to secure without this opportunity from UCL Advances.

Daniele Santoro, BA Humanities (Italian and Business Management), 2013

Workshops and Training

In addition to your placement, you will have the opportunity to gain valuable business skills through a series of workshops. You will attend a workshop on Personal Branding, a Transition to Work session, and a 3-Day Enterprise Bootcamp, which will teach you all of the basics of business to give you a head start in the world of SMEs.

Internships will be secured based on students’ ability to pitch and present themselves to the relevant companies. This will be done at one of four recruitment fairs. Therefore it is highly recommended you take advantage of all the workshops and training we are offering that are specifically geared to help you secure one of the highly sought out places on the programme, amongst a lot of competition. Note that the 3-Day Enterprise Bootcamp is mandatory for all successful applicants.

How to apply

Recruitment Fairs

Attend the fairs which interest you to meet and pitch to companies that you would be keen to work with.

Attend interviews with companies that are interested in you. After successfully pairing up with an SME, work with your potential supervisor to develop a proposal for the internship placement and submit it to businesssupport@ucl.ac.uk by April 25th, 2014.

I got to understand every area of the business: fulfillment, research and development, business development and dealing with suppliers. At the time MavRx were doing something quite similar to what I wanted to do, so I was able to learn from them before I did it myself. Now I’m running my own company and hopefully I’ll grow it in the next year. The experience was invaluable

Ian Campbell, MSc Management, 2013


Sign up to one of the following information sessions to know what to expect.

Register for the 3 Day Enterprise Bootcamp. Please note that attendance of one of the 3-day Bootcamps is mandatory for all successful applicants and the June Bootcamp sells out quickly, so attendance on an earlier occasion is highly recommended.

Attend the optional Personal Branding workshop, presented by UCL Careers, to prepare you for networking and pitching yourselves to potential host SMEs and to help spruce up your CV.

  • Thursday, March 13th, time TBC | Log in to your My Careers Service account to book a place at this event
  • Monday, March 17th, time TBC | Log in to your My Careers Service account to book a place at this event
  • Tuesday, March 18th, time TBC | Log in to your My Careers Service account to book a place at this event