Updated On 19 July 2023
One of the major things that attracts international students to study in UK is part-time job opportunities. Yes, you heard it right. The UK student visa allows international students to do part-time jobs for up to 20 hours per week. Therefore, students can easily apply for internship opportunities along with their studies.
Moreover, after completing their studies, international students are also given 2 years of PSW (post-study work) permit. This further encourages them to apply for internships after completing their studies to gain practical knowledge.
Internships occupy an essential part of a student’s university life. It is considered a stepping stone for launching their career. The UK is one of the most exclusive nations for overseas students to find internships and employment offers. Finding an internship is enjoyable for many students in this nation because of its inviting environment and commitment to intercultural education.
So if you are also an international student who is planning to apply for internship opportunities in UK while studying or after completing your studies, then you are at the right place! In this blog, we’ll discuss all about how to find internships in the UK as a student. So let’s get started!
Certainly, here are some tips on how to get internship in UK as an international student.
University’s placement cell: Almost all the universities in UK have a dedicated placement cell which is responsible for helping students in finding internships and placement opportunities. Moreover, they will also suggest to you and help you with the resources and documents.
Take guidance from Alumni: Connect with fellow international students and alumni who have interned in the UK. They can offer insights, advice, and potentially connect you with internship opportunities or relevant contacts.
Check online portals: Online portals are a great source to find internships in the UK. Various companies keep on listing vacancies for internships. Some popular job portals to find internships in UK as an international student includes Indeed, Glassdoor, Graduateland, and LinkedIn.
Connections and networks: Your own connections and networking can be a powerful tool in finding internships. Connect with the professionals in your field through various platforms, attend industry events, join relevant professional organizations, and participate in online communities. Let your network know that you are seeking an internship in the UK, as they may have valuable connections or information.
Company Websites: Visit the website of the companies or organizations you are interested in working with. Many organizations advertise their internship programs on their website or have dedicated career sections where they post internship vacancies.
Attend Career Fair: Try to participate in career fairs and networking events, both on and off campus. These events provide opportunities to meet recruiters, industry professionals, and potential employers. Exchange contact information and follow up with individuals you meet.
Government Websites: Students can also visit the official UK government website for the council. For the benefit of the students, they advertise full-time jobs, part-time jobs, paid internships, apprenticeships, etc. Through the website, it is simple to search for and apply for internships in the UK for overseas students.
Professional Association: Sometimes, the universities in UK have partnerships with various companies that give preference to university students when selecting interns.
Now let’s check How to get an internship in the UK as a student step by step below.
STEP 1: Research: Explore various sources to find suitable internships that align with your interest. You can also take the help of some of the platforms like LinkedIn, Indeed, and Glassdoor. Otherwise, the university’s placement cell may also help you in finding the right internship opportunity.
STEP 2: Prepare CV: A CV is quite an important document which summarises your education, skills, and potential to work in a particular field. The CV gives an idea to the organization about your abilities and thus helps in shortlisting the candidates according to their requirements. Make sure that your CV looks attractive, as it increases the chances of getting an internship.
STEP 3: Write a cover letter: Craft a compelling cover letter that introduces yourself, explains your interest in the internship, and highlights how your skills and education make you a suitable candidate.
STEP 4: Apply Online: You can use various modes to apply for the interview, such as through email or LinkedIn. Assure that you attach your resume, cover letter, certifications, and academic documents along with your application.
STEP 5: Follow-Up: After submitting your application, consider following up with the organization to express your interest and inquire about the status of your application. However, be professional and avoid excessive or intrusive communication.
STEP 6: Prepare for Interviews: If your application gets selected, you’ll probably get a call from the organization for an interview. Make sure you prepare well for the interview. Research the common questions asked in the interview. Also, try to showcase how your skills will add value to the organization in front of the interviewee.
Participating in internships in UK offers numerous benefits to international students. Here are some of the advantages of doing an internship in UK.
Enhances Your CV/ Resume: Doing an internship adds to the CV of students and enhances their job prospects. Most Multinational Companies prioritize students with practical knowledge of working in the related industry, as hiring a student with internship experience reduces the cost of spending on the student's training. Therefore, doing internships gives you an extra advantage over other competitors or job seekers.
Practical Application: During studies, generally, students are taught through textbooks which gives them theoretical knowledge. However, doing an internship helps them to understand the concept in a better way and encourages them to apply their theoretical knowledge to the real-world scenario.
Helps in Defining Your Path: An internship enables students to learn about the industry and determine whether or not they want to pursue a career in it. They provide an opportunity to evaluate whether the particular industry aligns with your interests and goals. Additionally, it might aid students in selecting their master's programme.
Networking Opportunity: While interning, students connect with experts and colleagues from the same field. It is a great opportunity to meet with create your own network and build lifelong connections. These valuable connections might help you in the future. Apart from this, students also get to understand different work ethics in the intern group.
Skill Enhancement: An internship can help you develop the hard and soft skills you need to advance in your profession. Some common skills you learn during an internship are communication, work ethic, overcoming challenges, and problem-solving skills.
Boosts Confidence: Doing internships helps you build self-confidence. By successfully completing an internship, students get confidence in their abilities and get more assured about the professional environment. Moreover, they also get satisfaction when they are able to apply their knowledge in real-world scenarios and add to the overall company’s goal.
Source of Income: Paid internships can help students earn extra money. The extra money earned helps you bear your expenditure or cost of living in UK. You can also collect some savings for further investment in your education.
Various UK universities offer paid internships to international students. Below is the list of some of the best universities and colleges offering internships in the UK for international students:
University of London
University of Sussex
Sheffield Hallam University
University of Glasgow
Manchester Metropolitan University
Q: Can international students do internships in UK?
A: Yes, international students are allowed to do internships in UK. However, certain considerations and requirements are to be kept in mind. Ensuring that the internship aligns with the visa regulations and that the employer is a registered sponsor with the UK is important.
Q: What visa do I need for UK internship?
A: Getting a work permit before applying for an internship is important.
For internships that last below 6 months, students can proceed with a visitor visa application where they can show their internship-offered confirmation letter to UKVI along with their regular visit visa documents. Moreover, you can also do an internship through a tier 4 (student) visa if you opt for a course that includes internship or work placement or professional practice.
Q: Are internships in UK paid?
A: Generally, the internships in UK are paid. In fact, you can also find various paid internships in UK for international students in the university itself. However, there are a few companies which do not pay interns.
Q: When should I apply for internships in UK?
A: It is advisable to find internships in UK well in advance, at least 3 to 6 months before the desired date. You can easily apply for internships whenever you want. However, summer breaks are considered an ideal time for doing internships, as there is no limit to the number of working hours during breaks. You can easily do internships for as long as you want without any burden of studies.
Q: Can I do an internship in UK along with my studies?
A: Yes, international students are allowed to do internships in UK along with their studies. The student visa allows them to do part-time jobs for up to 20 hours per week along with their studies which they can utilize for doing internships. Whereas during summer breaks, the limit is extended.
Having an internship position allows students to experience what it's like to work in their desired industry. As a result, you also gain a competitive edge while applying for graduate positions. While working as an intern for a business, you might even be able to make a little additional money. The majority of students in the UK typically complete their internships during the summer. Therefore, be sure to aim to select the top internships at the ideal period. However, you also apply for internships after completing your studies.
If you are also passionate about fulfilling your dream of studying in UK, we encourage you to have a word with our team of expert counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC). If you are unable to travel to our offices, we offer online counselling services via our website. Our dedicated counsellors will provide you with the best guidance regarding your application to study in UK. Don't hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 1800-1230-00011.