Manchester Graduate Internship Programme

Good news – our Manchester Graduate Internship Programme (MGIP) is now open to postgraduates.

MGIP has been running successfully since 2008, offering paid graduate internships in the Greater Manchester region for recent University of Manchester undergraduates. We’re now ready to open it up to postgraduates. International grads and postgrads can also apply, although there may be some issues here – see later in this post.

What are these internships?
They’re the chance to do real paid graduate level work (no bar jobs or “sandwich artists” here), for 4-12 months, generally starting between June and December 2011. In all cases, you can get some good experience on your CV.

What happens at the end of the internship?
Some of our MGIP interns have transferred to permanent jobs with their internship employer; others have used their experience to get other graduate or “next step” jobs. There’s no commitment on either side beyond the agreed period of the internship, but we do help you make the most of the experience you’ve gained, and market that effectively to other employers.

Did you say “paid”?
Indeed I did (keep up, Clegg – in Manchester we’ve always believed in getting paid for work, even if you’re a student/graduate). There are plenty of websites trying to promote unpaid or “expenses only” internships. We don’t buy that – if you’re doing a real job, you should get paid.

However … don’t expect to get rich on these internships.

If you’re looking for a “graduate salary”, that’s absolutely fine – go and apply for the graduate jobs we advertise on CareersLink.

If you’re applying for an internship, a key part of what you’re getting is experience, along with the chance to improve or develop new skills, and that’s part of the reward, so in 2010, MGIP salaries averaged around £15,000 pa (pro rata, if the internship is less than a year long).

Who can apply?
You have to have graduated from the University of Manchester in 2011 and be available to start the internship this year. It’s a straight-after-your-degree opportunity, so you can’t “take time out” travelling for a year and expect to be eligible for MGIP next year when you get back.

For international students, the changes to visa regulations are likely to impact MGIP next year. We’re still waiting for the small print on the visa changes for 2012, but once the Post Study Work visa goes, it looks likely that an employer will only be able to apply for a work visa for an international student if they’re earning over £20,000. That would exclude all of the recent MGIP internships. There is nothing we can do about that unfortunately.

How do you find out more and apply?
There’s a whole MGIP website with lots more detail.

MGIP vacancies will be advertised on

  1. CareersLink – log in using your standard university login details, and search for vacancies either using the keyword   MGIP   or selecting “Vacancy type” as “05. Graduate-level internship” from the scroll-down list. If you want to be notified of any new vacancies which come in, after you’ve searched for the current vacancies, just click on the “Create job agent” button on the right hand side of the results, enter your e-mail, and you’ll get notified as they get posted.

    Note: You won’t find many vacancies on there yet, as most will come in for the summer and the autumn term, but they do trickle in all year round so keep an eye on them.

  2. Coming soon – a direct feed of our MGIP vacancies on the MGIP website
  3. Facebook – for those with a Facebook account, you can access the MGIP Facebook page, which will also keep you up-to-date with the vacancies as they are added. You can also do all the usual social media stuff here, ask questions, make comments etc, but if you “don’t do Facebook” (me neither) don’t worry – you don’t have to sign up or have an account to see the vacancies or apply. Just use the other methods above.

You have to apply for these internships as you would for any other job – normally a CV, covering letter and/or application form. They are competitive, and we screen the applications before sending them to the advertising employers. However, we’ll tell you if you’ve messed up your CV, give you suggestions for what you need to do to fix it, and if possible, get you to reapply, this time with, hopefully, a much better chance of an employer picking you.

How do I improve my chances of getting an MGIP internship?
Apart from the obvious stuff like making a good application, and not leaving it until the last minute, think about applying for internships based outside central Manchester. Anything outside the city centre seems to be seen as “too far” for some (a bit ironic if grads are wanting to get experience and earn some money before “going travelling”…), so investigate the delights of Oldham or Congleton and you’ll instantly cut out some of the competition.

If you want to check out the world outside the Oxford Road corridor, have a look at our World of Manchester interactive map.