Tahira Abdul, from London Academy, graduated the Career Ready programme in 2019. During her time on the programme she enjoyed a 6 week paid internship at BP. Here, she explains how her time at BP has helped her develop the workplace skills, experience and confidence needed to enjoy a rewarding future.

Work experience can be hard to find on your own. This kind of real-life experience gives young people like me more options to think about in the future. The assumption that university is the only next step is not right for everyone.

I really enjoyed working at BP because I was given real-life work, I felt like my input made an actual difference to the project I was working on. I was given the chance to speak to people from different teams to discuss their roles and I found it helpful to ask questions about how they got to where they were. I spoke to a colleague who works on the trading floor and I heard a lot of inspirational stories, throughout BP, about women who are now in senior positions. All of their experiences have motivated me to keep working hard towards my own career goals.

I would like to say thank you to BP, for giving me the chance to work in a real-life office setting, I don’t think I would have had the opportunity otherwise. My Career Ready internship has really helped me understand how a large company runs and that values such as teamwork are important. I understand all of the different departments better and can see where I could possibly fit in, in the future. As well as getting a great insight into the working world, this internship has really boosted my confidence when meeting new people.

Not only have I built professional networks with BP employees but I met lots of other young people like me on the Career Ready programme.

In the near future, I plan to go to university to study Economics and learn about both the analytical and statistical sides of the subject. I’d like to continue to gain insight into the workplace by doing some more internships, given the opportunity. Career Ready really showed me how important and useful the experience is.