Fit for the Future - new graduate internship scheme


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Posted on 19 January 2010

Keele University has launched a new graduate internship scheme in the West Midlands. Project FIT, the Future Industry Training (FIT) programme, supported by HEFCE, will be a boost for employers and provide unemployed graduates with valuable work experience.

Placements are available to businesses in Staffordshire and the West Midlands region in five key sectors: the digital industries, medical technologies, professional services, the ceramics industry and business opportunities presented by an ageing society. The scheme kicks off with opportunities in an ageing society and the others will follow between April and September this year.

The scheme will help companies address forthcoming business challenges and give unemployed graduates – or those at risk of unemployment – the chance to gain new skills in the workplace and get paid at the same time.

Peter Hooper, Head of Research and Enterprise at Keele, said: “We’ve already assisted more than 70 organisations in the past few months with environmental projects, via Keele’s Project Green. Project FIT extends this support into new areas and opens up opportunities to a wider range of business sectors.  We’re delighted to be able to offer this support, with the help of a range of sector-specific partners, to local companies.”

Project FIT will help to pay for a graduate on a six week placement to complete a project for the company. The University will fund the graduate to complete a post graduate module of relevance to the particular business sector and project type and Keele will also pay the graduate a bursary of £180 per week to work four days per week with the company.

The cost to an employer will be less than £300 for the whole six week period.

The benefits:

For under £300 a graduate could help the company:
• Research a new growth area for your sector
• Explore overseas markets
• Develop new products or services
• Market the organisation
• Test new product ideas

How will it work?

Keele University will:
• Place an unemployed graduate with a company for 6 weeks to complete a project of their choice
• Organise training for the graduate at no cost to the company
• Pay the graduate a bursary of £180 per week
• Invoice the company £280 in total

When can the graduate start?

For the first set of internships - anytime between 1st February and 29th March 2010 for a six week period.

Companies and graduates can register their interest for any of the five topics by emailing internships@uso.keele.ac.uk or calling 01782 733371.

For further media information contact Chris Stone on 01782 733375 or c.w.stone@kfm.keele.ac.uk