My SME Internship: Tom – Ipsa Consulting

Hi, my name is Tom and I graduated with a BSc in Geography in July 2022. 

After graduating, I sourced an internship opportunity myself, and I completed an SME Internship in November and December 2022.

My company of choice was Ipsa Consulting, a Devon-based consultancy supporting the sustainable growth of purpose-led organisations. 

My role

The main task during my internship was producing a lead magnet resource for potential clients to provide an introduction to sustainability in small businesses. This was a great way for me to gain knowledge in the field of sustainability consulting, which I am really keen to get into. It also helped me to improve my research and written communication skills away from the world of academia. Beyond this, I worked on a number of other things including a sustainability strategy for Ipsa itself; a client’s sustainability report; and blogs for the company website. 

Why you should do an SME Internship

As a graduate who didn’t manage to complete any relevant work experience during my degree, I would really recommend the SME Internship Scheme to other students and recent graduates as it is a great stepping stone from university to the working world. It has worked especially well for me as I have been able to squeeze it into my gap year before I go travelling, meaning that when I return and am looking for full-time jobs, I will have some useful experience to talk about in interviews

My advice

After going through the process of finding a company to host me for this internship I would give a couple pieces of advice.

Firstly, don’t be too demoralised if you don’t get a response from the first organisations you contact, or they respond saying that they are too busy – you will find a company eventually!

Secondly, consider really small companies as they are likely to be more open to an extra worker and will probably have more time to provide mentoring. This was my experience anyway – good luck! 

Want to be an SME intern?  

The scheme is now open! 

If you are interested in sourcing your own internship opportunity like Tom, you can find advice about arranging your own internship here

SME Internship Scheme logo

Check out our “My SME Internship” blog series to hear more student stories and get some inspiration. 

So you’ve found an opportunity you’d like to apply for: 

If you have any questions about the scheme, writing your application, or anything else relating to careers you can speak to us on live chat, check out our events, book an appointment, or drop in from Monday to Friday, 10 am to 4.30 pm during term time.