Catia Sane from Westminster Kingsway College, part of our 2018 cohort of students, pictured first from the left, enjoyed a 4 week paid internship at The British Standards Institution. Here she talks about her internship, her exciting plans for the future and why workplace experiences are so important for young people.

This internship has helped me so much it’s unbelievable, it’s really allowed me to realise my potential; focusing on my strengths and weaknesses and helping me grow as a person. I’ve always been good at working with a team but after talking to my colleagues I realised that to be more independent I needed to ask questions and then focus on the task at hand. I got the best insight into what a working office is really like, I learnt so much about myself that I didn’t even realise!   

The best part of the internship was a team away day to parliament, I really got to know my colleagues better; picking their brains about work life. Hearing about their experiences genuinely made me feel like a welcome part of the team. I gained so much confidence and asked so many questions the presenter asked if I wanted to take over!

The thing that stood out to me the most was the amount of time staff at BSI put aside to speak to me about my future. People like Gracia, who, after talking to me extensively about which degree I wanted do, then sat down and helped me write my UCAS application. My supervisor Jeremy was also very supportive during my time at BSI, thanks to him I got a realistic experience of the workplace and lots of useful advice about my future. I’d like to say thank you to everyone that took the time and helped me develop into the more confident and knowledgeable person I am now.

We were incredibly impressed with Catia and her abilities, she far surpassed our expectations. The Director David Bell was also so impressed he has since discussed with her the potential for future work.

Jeremy Gray, Catia’s internship supervisor at BSI

My plan now is to go to university. I want to study international relations because of my interest in global politics and economics. They are fields of work that just keep changing from day to day and I find keeping up with that pace exciting. Eventually, I’d like to try and work within the international trading and international politics sectors

The best thing about my internship was that I got a proper insight into what I wanted to do in the future, it has expanded my knowledge of the industry and put me on the right path towards where I want to go.

Learning in school can only give you so much of an idea about the world after education. Real work experience mentally prepares students for the challenges they might face at work and how to tackle them. Career Ready opens up so many doors and opportunities that we wouldn’t have otherwise thought about. The most important thing is, it can really open your mind to all of the paths available in the future, things you may never have thought possible before.

Joining the Career Ready programme can sound scary because it’s something new and unknown, but you should definitely join in, it’s a once in a lifetime experience that you will never forget. You will meet so many new people and learn so much from the workshops and workplace visits that your perspective will completely change. Career Ready is the starting point for your future.

Learn more about how we help young people like Catia kickstart their futures or get involved and make a lasting difference.