Three young men from different background in an office smiling at a laptop screen

March 12, 2024, by pcylr7

Deciding on careers: my micro-internship

By Lucy Rayner-Thomas, chemistry student – © via Unsplash by Priscilla Du Preez

Recently I have decided to try some different work experiences in an attempt to narrow down the long list of career options. This encouraged me to take part in the Universitas 21 Sustainability Micro-internship programme. 

What is a micro-internship?

It is a short-term internship that usually ranges from 5-40 hours and allows people to engage in voluntary learning and self-development activities.

Who is Universitas 21 and what do they do?

They are an international network of 29 universities across the world with Nottingham being one of a few universities that can partake in the Universitas 21 Micro-internship programme. Universitas 21 focuses on collaboration, internationalisation and sustainability, with them providing opportunities for international staff and students to work together to address different tasks.

What did the internship involve and how do you apply?

The application process was quite simple; it involved filling out a short form with my university details and why I wanted to take part. During the internship, we were put into teams of about six people and given the task of pitching an idea to a real-life client (Housing First). Our task was to come up with a homelessness awareness campaign to address the sustainability goal of reducing inequalities. This involved developing a pitch idea in our teams, independent research, creating a poster, and a clear plan of how our idea could be implemented. I worked with students from China, Australia and America,  I really enjoyed this aspect because it added the challenge of organising meetings to account for different time zones and I feel that we had a broader range of ideas to work with.

What was the result?

  • Gained a micro-credential, which can be displayed on Linked-In.
  • Built my network with students from across the world.
  • Received feedback from a real-life client.
  • Increased my confidence with presenting.
  • Improved my planning, communication, and team-work skills.
  • Opened my eyes to other careers that required similar skills including management consultancy.
  • Allowed me to demonstrate leadership and teamwork on my CV.

What opportunities you can get involved in:

I strongly believe that everyone should take opportunities offered by the university, as it allows you to broaden your skillset and to show you which activities you enjoy doing, this may even help to indicate what career avenues to consider. Universitas 21 is offering a longer internship, it’s 3 weeks long called the U21 Global Citizens. The company focuses on improving your leadership and teamwork skills.

Do you want to master a range of transferable skills to boost your CV? Visit the Careers and Employability Service website and discover the different ways you can gain practical experience alongside your studies.

Posted in Internship