Category Archives: History

Employer Case Study: RAMM

Name of Organisation: RAMM

Description of Organisation: RAMM will enhance people’s quality of life. It’s a place of discovery which encourages everyone to be curious. RAMM uses its local and global collections to connect people to the world and inspires them to shape a better future.

Name of Employer: Sophie Harbour

Job Title: Engagement Officer (Skills Development)

Internship Scheme usedGraduate Business Partnership (GBP) 

Feedback:

“Our intern’s main responsibilities were coordinating the Lost Words Exhibition, ‘What’s on Guides’ and coordinating our school visits programme. He also provided administrative support such as, organising meetings, minute taking, raising purchase orders, providing a central point of contact for the Audience Development Lead.

Our graduate was also a massive help when providing marketing assistance, including researching websites, writing copy, email marketing, implementing marketing campaigns, uploading content to websites. He assisted with the execution of events and activities within the museum and art gallery to include Gerald’s Birthday and the Lates events.

The research skills our GBP gathered from RAMM’s Customer Relationship Management System and booking system as well as from visitor surveys and other sources was completed to a very high standard.

The student was a great member of our team for the 18 months of his internship. He approached his role with enthusiasm and commitment and always had a fantastic ‘can do’ attitude. He also brought a different perspective to our organisation which was really useful when thinking about marketing and social media to our wide range of audiences.”

Heritage Innovation Website Content Developer – University of Exeter Culture Team

“I built some strong connections whilst also deepening my love of the heritage sector through my writing”

Name: Frank Allen

Degree Programme: BA History

Year of Study (at time of completing internship): 2nd Year

Pathway Programme Completed: Pathways to Arts, Culture, and Heritage

Internship Role/Job Title: Heritage Innovation Website Content Developer

Internship Employer: University of Exeter Culture Team

Please outline the project you worked on during your Pathways internship. What achievements are you particularly proud of? How will your work be helping others?

At the tender age of eight, I fondly remembered visiting Lichfield Cathedral. I was awe-struck by it. The Cathedral’s imposing spires, majestic arches, and grand scale captured my imagination. Therefore, when I saw the opportunity to work for the University of Exeter’s heritage team as a website content developer, I immediately applied.

I was asked to produce articles and blog pieces for the University’s Heritage website with my colleague, Kate, whilst also suggesting upgrades for the website and tweets to write. With only a brief knowledge of Devon and Cornwall’s heritage, and of the work that the University was doing to study it, I was excited to begin the role and learn more. The research assistants, Gilda and Eloise, guided me towards some captivating projects. Their research ranged counties and specialities, considering both natural and man-made heritage and its effects on communities, policies, and even animals! My task was to synthesise these insights into four enthralling pieces of writing for a wider audience, which would then have to be publicised. I started with the news articles. Consisting of only a few hundred words, I scoured my research reports for recent events that took my interest. Using a few examples on the Heritage website as my guide, I was excited to discuss Professor DeSilvey’s project, which would investigate strategies into heritage loss and conservation. I was also eager to talk about Dr Naomi Sykes’ new research into why we love to feed animals, using heritage sites as a testing ground. This followed nicely from Dr Brazier and Puttock’s research into Eurasian beavers on Holnicote estate.

Moving onto the blog articles, two themes across the heritage sector caught my attention: climate change and the debate around the loss of heritage. Touching upon artistic projects and a bid involving University of Exeter professors, I highlighted how important the consideration of Climate Change was in heritage conservation in the future. However, does this heritage even need to be conserved in the first place? In her book ‘Curated Decay’, Professor DeSilvey suggests that we should allow nature to take its course. This discussion around heritage conservation informed my second blog post. A common thread through these themes, though, was an ethical discussion of what heritage meant to a community. This captivated me the most, reminding me of how I became interested in my own heritage, to begin with.

How did you overcome a particular challenge during your internship, for example, challenges linked to working remotely?

I found the work with the Culture Team’s heritage sector challenging, but at the same time incredibly thought-provoking and rewarding. Time management was key. Kate and I managed to produce a schedule for the week, dividing each day into achievable objectives. This skill was very useful in creating the Heritage website’s Twitter timeline as well. However, this would not have been possible without strong teamwork and communication. Meetings and emails with both my team and the professors I wrote about were integral to producing high-quality pieces of writing. In the end, I built some strong connections whilst also deepening my love of the heritage sector through my writing.

Why would you recommend a Professional Pathways internship to future students?

The role of website content developer equipped me with some invaluable skills whilst I pursued a field that I would love to work in again in the future. I could not recommend the role enough to anyone keen on finding out more about heritage and what it means for them and their community.

Student Case Study: Preston Street Films 

Name of Student:  Kathryn Offer

Degree Subject:  BA History & International Relations Study Abroad

Job Title:  Documentary Research Assistant

Company Name: Preston Street Films

Type of Internship:  Student Business Partnerships (SBPs) 

Description Of Company: Preston Street Films is a documentary film and branded content production company based in Exeter, Devon. The team combines decades of experience working for broadcasters such as the BBC, Al Jazeera, NBC and Channel 4 and a range of high profile brands and clients.

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

My key duties and responsibilities during my internship were researching ideas for documentaries, researching and getting in contact with archives for documentary footage.
I also researched for potential companies to make short-form documentaries for as well as,  helping with filming as a runner and getting in contact with people.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?

The outputs and outcomes I delivered for my employer was where I produced a list of potential companies to liaise with. I gave ideas for new projects and got in contact with people to appear in documentaries.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

I got to work as a runner and see a project through from the researching phase, to completion. I researched the history of table manners for a documentary, contacted people to appear, and then helped with the filming itself.

What did not go so well on your internship? How did you overcome any challenges?

It would have been great if my contract could have been extended. But there was limited funding for this.

Skills Learnt: 

  • Negotiation
  • Persuasion
  • Problem Solving
  • Leadership
  • Customer Service

Attributes Developed:

  • Researching
  • Networking
  • Degree Specific
  • Commercial Awareness
  • Confidence

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“I genuinely loved every moment of working with Preston Street Films. I felt I gained so much experience, in so many areas during the placement, and it was such a great opportunity to experience something outside my general academic focus. I could not recommend it enough to anyone else considering a similar route. Everyone at Preston Street Films made me feel so welcome, and was so supportive of my applications to similar schemes after it ended. If there was greater funding in place to extend my contract this would have made it even better.”

 

Student Case Study-Ridgeway Information Ltd

Name of Student:  Umaira Navaid

Degree Subject: BA History and Politics, MA Applied Security and Strategy

Job Title:  Research Intern

Company Name:  Ridgeway Information Ltd

Type of Internship:  Access to Internships (A2I)Student Business Partnerships (SBPs)

Description of Company: We work with major corporates, not-for-profit and public sector organisations. Our current and previous clients include the United Nations, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, the European Union, the UK Gambling Commission, multinationals and private clients. We give our clients the confidence to identify opportunities, mitigate risks, tackle challenges and understand the landscapes they inhabit. We do this by providing verifiable insight gained through expert research and analysis of client-supplied and open sources.

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

My key duties and responsibilities were to help research and write reports on nuclear proliferation. I also created resources for some of the training schemes the company provides.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?

I produced a report for the IAEA on Pakistan’s nuclear complex using my Urdu language skills. I also helped produce two other reports on Taiwan and Jordan. I planned and produced a short activity for people who undertake the OSINT course with Ridgeway. My skills in Urdu led the IAEA to have a better understanding of what is being written and posted about nuclear ongoings in Pakistan.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

I was tasked with researching and writing about Pakistan and its new Nuclear Complex from sources in Urdu. I was able to read and translate sources that would have otherwise been unusable. I wrote a report summarising my findings.

What did not go so well on your internship? How did you overcome any challenges?

It was difficult to find much information at first and I spent many days without any relevant information. However, with further encouragement, I was later able to find better details and make the most of my findings.

Skills Learnt 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Communication
  • Team Work and Collaboration
  • Problem Solving
  • Time and Work Load Management

Attributes Developed 

  • Confidence
  • Initiative
  • Independence
  • Work Ethic
  • Perseverance

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“My internship was both fun and hard work. My colleagues were extremely friendly and the Access to Internship team is super helpful. I worked on a number of projects with Ridgeway and was impressed with the amount of autonomy I was given during my time here. I was also given good career and life advice and feel like I have a better idea of what I want to do in the future and my options.”

Student Case Study:  The Eden Project

Name of Student:  Max Parkin

Degree Subject: BA History – Cornwall

Job Title:  Research Writer Intern

Company Name:  The Eden Project

Type of Internship:  Access to Internships (A2I)Student Business Partnerships (SBPs)

Description of Company: The Eden Project, an educational charity, connects us with each other and the living world, exploring how we can work towards a better future. Our visitor destination in Cornwall, UK, is nestled in a huge crater. Here, massive Biomes housing the largest rainforest in captivity, stunning plants, exhibitions and stories serve as a backdrop to our striking contemporary gardens, summer concerts and exciting year-round family events.

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship?

To research specific briefed environmental/social/sustainable topics for the Eden Project as directed by the Director of Interpretation. To write, summarise and authenticate research documents and storylines with references. And/or to write final copy across a range of media using Eden’s house style and brand guidelines.

Key accountabilities (depending on area the student wishes to gain experience in):
1. To research specific briefed topics using literature searches and by communicating with organisations and experts in the field, working to set deadlines.
2. To write master files (as laid out in the Eden guidelines) on specific briefed topics with full list of references.
3. To write compelling storylines, narrative and content briefs to enable interpretation of specific subjects across a wide range of media.
4. To write final copy for specific exhibits, events, digital and web content and publications using Eden’s house style and brand guidelines.

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer?

The main task for the interpretation department at that time was Eden’s summer content – Earth Story. I was asked to research in detail Megafaunal extinction during the end of the last Ice Age and the potential human involvement. The end result was a detailed document which was then used to help the graphics team produce an extinction timeline which can now be seen in the Earth Story exhibit at Eden.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship?

I was given a topic I had 0 previous knowledge of – Megafauna. I was asked to produce a detailed research document and became an ‘expert’. My research was verified by Natural History Museum Professor, Adrian Lister and played an instrumental role in producing content which is now displayed in one of Britain’s top visitor attractions. 

What did not go so well on your internship? How did you overcome any challenges?

Initially, it was difficult to get to grips with my task, my progress was slow to start – I made sure to communicate well with Sarah, my boss, and ask lots of questions when I became lost.

Skills Learnt 

  • Ability to Work Under Pressure
  • Communication
  • Team Work and Collaboration
  • Problem Solving
  • Time and Work Load Management

Attributes Developed 

  • Confidence
  • Initiative
  • Perseverance
  • Motivation
  • Personal Awareness

Your message to other students considering a similar job role, organisation or sector?

“Working with the Eden Project for my internship was highly rewarding, exciting and eye opening. I became an ‘expert’ in a topic I’d never even heard of before, I met some great people and a future career path.”

The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum – Employer Case Study

Name of Organisation:  The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum

Description of Organisation: The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum is home to one of the largest collections of material relating to the moving image in Britain. We are both an accredited public museum and an academic research facility and we hold a collection of over 85,000 items. Over 1,000 of our items are on display in our Galleries and are available to be viewed by the public.

Name of Employer:  Phil Wickham

Job Title: Curator

Internship Scheme used:  A2I

Employer subsidies (A2I) – Employment Services – University of Exeter

Feedback:

We recruited a Curatorial Intern who researched and produced data to support a planned funding bid and also assisted with other key duties in the museum. The main research task was to assist with funding from the National Heritage Lottery Fund (NLHF). This work was completed to a very high standard. She also looked into an array of academic researchers who had used the museum’s collections and got in touch with them about their publications or projects. The intern was confident, organised and hardworking, this showed specifically through her preparation of a talk on pre-cinema in the museum’s gallery. She then went on to present this to visitors which was received with much enthusiasm. The internship went very well. She continued to volunteer for us after her internship and did some really valuable data analysis work on the museum’s visitors that will help us to develop. 

This is an excellent scheme. We have used A2I twice and both times been able to benefit from exceptional talents. We highly recommend taking on an intern from the University of Exeter.  

Quote from Intern:

“I honestly could not fault this experience whatsoever. I was able to combine my academic studies with real-world practical experience. Phil allowed me to use my initiative and offer my own suggestions in relation to the museum’s redevelopment project, which caused me to feel like a real part of the team. It also allowed me to demonstrate my ability to think creatively and intuitively rather than simply wait for instructions. I am eternally grateful for the encouragement that I received throughout the four weeks. This internship confirmed to me that I have chosen a career path that I am well-suited to.”

Volunteer Opportunities Officer – Wheal Martyn

What were your main roles and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

My role for the week was to create four volunteer role profiles. In order to do this I had to speak to people including: the Museum Manager, Curator, Exhibition and Engagement Officer and the Project Manager to inform these roles. I also created promotional material for the new volunteer roles and amended existing application and induction forms to make them suitable.

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

Over the course of my internship I had to arrange meetings with a variety of people both face to face and over the telephone so my biggest achievement was gaining the confidence to talk to these new people in order to complete my work. I think this will be an advantage in any internships or jobs I have in the future as I will have the confidence to speak to a range of people.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

Wheal Martyn have recently been awarded a funding by the Heritage Lottery for a new project called the Clay Works! Project. Due to this, there are many new opportunities for volunteers which need to be communicated to the public. The creation of volunteer role profiles and promotional material will be helpful to Wheal Martyn as these materials will enable the museum to recruit a diverse range of people to become volunteers. Creating these materials can be time consuming and the office is very busy due to the commencement of this new project so the work completed during my internship will help to lighten a small part of the workload the museum currently has.

What skills were you able to develop through the internship?

Communication, research, networking

What attributes were you able to develop through the internship?

Confidence, perseverance, professionalism

 

Archive Assistant – Beaford Arts

What were your main roles and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

My main roles during my internship were: repackaging Roger Deakin’s photographs that were taken in the 1970s, listing those photos and labelling them, listing oral history interviews, researching those in the interviews using ancestry and find my past, cataloguing photos by James Ravilious ready for it to go up on the website, using EXCEL to list and catalogue photographs and learning archivist skills, techniques and conservation techniques.

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

I learnt loads of new skills that increase my employability. I also explored a new career, one I never would have considered and completed all tasks independently and to a high standard.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

I was able to assist with the wider ‘Hidden History’ project, decreasing the workload of the archivist and helping the project to keep to its time schedule. I also helped to sort, label and list all the photographs which will make searching and researching of the photographs much easier.

What skills were you able to develop through the internship?

Communication, leadership, IT

What attributes were you able to develop through the internship?

Commercial awareness, motivation, work ethic

Curation Intern – University of Exeter College of Social Sciences and International Studies

What were your main roles and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

I was responsible for cataloguing artefacts and putting them on the museum database, preparing history files for some objects and sorting out the store. It was crucial to prepare the collection for the opening of the museum in 2020. My work mostly focused on Roman, medieval and Elizabethan coins as well as some pottery pieces from Devon area. Cataloguing them required me to find information not only about history of the object but also funding, acquisition, rights field collection etc.

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

I managed to complete all initially planned tasks ahead of time so I had time to help further. I also gained sector specific knowledge as well as historical one, which I was not aware of before.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

I helped to sort the stores and lightened the workload of the curator, who was relieved to focus on other important tasks. I also made it easier to move around the stores.

What skills were you able to develop through the internship?

Problem solving, organisation, research

What attributes were you able to develop through the internship?

Logical thinking, independence, professionalism

Student Researcher – University of Exeter Education Incubator

What were your main roles and responsibilities during the course of your internship?

  • Offering administrative support to three Chinese fellows on MOOC course on contemporary Chinese culture
  • Planning and drafting a social media campaign
  • Proofreading and editing of English texts written by non-native speakers, and adapting these to an online context
  • Recruiting student and non-student volunteers for the trial version of the course

What would you say was your biggest achievement over the course of your internship?

The independent nature of the role meant that I was able to really strengthen my skills in taking the initiative and working autonomously and independently.

What benefits did your internship bring to your employer?

Administrative support, lightening my colleagues’ workload, and ensuring that all course content and materials were adapting and appropriate for an English-language audience.

What skills were you able to develop through the internship?

Communication, leadership, decision making

What attributes were you able to develop through the internship?

Initiative, perseverance, independence