Tag Archives: SantanderUniversities

Employer Case Study: QWERTY Beer Box

Name of Organisation: QWERTY Beer Box

Description of Organisation: QWERTY Beer Box is a year one University of Exeter startup, formed in March 2020 to give independent breweries the national recognition they deserve. We’ve since put together 4 independent craft beer selections (Best of the Cotswolds, Devon, Bristol and Wales), partnered with over 40 breweries, worked with numerous high profile corporate clients and sold over 1500 QWERTY Beer Boxes. In 2021 we are looking to triple our 2020 annual sales, export British craft beer to the EU and explore numerous other sales channels.

Name of Employer: Quinn Leatherbarrow-Stokes

Job Title: Co Founder

Internship Scheme usedAccess to Internships (A2I),  Student Business Partnerships (SBPs) 


Together with the intern we were able to define a project that would entail discovering and pursuing incremental sales opportunities in the B2B market across the Southwest (Devon, Cornwall & The Cotswolds). They became an expert in this area of the business and were able to add value to the overall business. Although not leading directly to immediate sales it has paved the way for future expansion and we are in the process of bringing them back on board come September.

Given the results achieved and the attitude and talent demonstrated by the student I do not think there are any obvious improvements. One aspect that I did find helped the relationship was that I was a student at the University of Exeter last year and so was aware of other commitments and we were able to work together on this.

The A2I team have been amazing. They worked with us to put together a job listing and advertised it to the talented students at the University of Exeter. We had a shortlist of students and were able to find someone who was perfect for the role. The student themselves added significant value to the QWERTY Beer Box team and business and gave us the extra capacity to pursue incremental opportunities.

Student Case Study – True Story

Name of Student:  Emma Fear

Degree Subject:  BA English

Job Title:  Christmas Account Manager

Company Name:  True Story

Type of Internship:  Santander SME

Description of Company: As an independent creative agency, we’re used to working with brands and retailers across all channels, both in the UK and globally. Our concepts translate into real-world experiences for customers that deliver measurable commercial results. 

What were your key duties and responsibilities during your internship? 

I was on a team that was the liaison point between a large team of designers and the Boots UK in store marketing Christmas team. I had to ensure briefs were communicated effectively and deadlines were met for delivering completed artwork files to the client.   

What outputs and outcomes did you deliver for your employer? 

I produced weekly market research reports for Boots which allowed other account managers more time to manage larger projects and also gave Boots an insight into their competitors. I also ensured that artwork files were delivered in a timely manner so that print deadlines were hit. This meant being aware of the designers workloads and timeframes and doing everything in my power to support them to reach the deadlines we set.

What was your biggest achievement on your internship? 

Boots asked true story to produce prototype artwork of in store marketing materials that were not yet fully completed in the creative stage for use in a mock-up show room. I project managed this whole product, which meant delivering over 200 pieces of prototype artwork to a really tight deadline. To do this, I ensured I provided daily updates to the client, the designers and the rest of my team so we were all aware of how much work was left to do. I also made sure that things went as smoothly as possible by remaining in constant communication with the client so feedback could be delivered and auctioned promptly. We ended up meeting the deadline and all material was in the showroom on time for the senior members of the Boots team to see it.

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

There were large issues on a piece of work I was covering for somebody who was on holiday. As I was the only one in the office, I had to ensure that the client knew the limitations of the situation and the problems we had. This was incredibly difficult as it was not a client I had built up previous rapport with and this was my first dealings with them. I overcame these challenges by remaining calm and honest with the client and helping them to understand how the situation had occurred. I also contacted my line manager and alerted her to the problem so that if it escalated further she would know the situation clearly enough to have an input. This move proved invaluable when she was later called up and asked to make an important decision regarding this project.

Skills Learnt:

  • Problem solving
  • Negotiation
  • Persuasion
  • Leadership
  • Customer Service

Attributes Developed:

  • Confidence
  • Initiative
  • Perseverance
  • Motivation

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

“My internship was enormously useful to me both personally and professionally. It has given me the confidence and experience to pursue a graduate position in a large company and taught me so much about having a full-time job.”


Employer Case Study: Spoton.net Limited 

Name of Organisation:   Spoton.net Limited 

Description of Organisation: Established in 2008, we’re an experienced and creative web design company with a specialist team of website design, web development, and technical support experts. 

As a franchise, we’re able to offer our web design services to businesses throughout the UK and Ireland via our network of local consultants. Every website is then created by the team here in Devon. 

Name of Employer:  Amy Cross-Webber 

Job Title: Marketing Manager 

Internship Scheme used:  SBP 

Student Business Partnership (SBP) – Employment Services – University of Exeter 


We recruited an intern as Marketing Assistant. She researched and written several blog posts that are published on itseeze.com – many have a high number of views and lengthy read times and exit rates suggesting people coming to our site and engaged by these blog posts written by our brilliant Exeter student. 

I honestly cannot fault our intern and everything she did. Our intern wished to continue studying – otherwise she is highly employable, and we would have certainly considered offering her a full-time role and still hope to in the future. 

We had a very positive experience – our intern proved to be a highly valuable member of our team. Her work ethic and creative writing skills impressed us from the outset. She fitted in perfectly with our team. We are incredibly grateful to have her as part of our team for the past 9 months – an absolute asset. 

School of Social Entrepreneurs Cornwall- Employer Case Study


Name of Organisation: School of Social Entrepreneurs Cornwall

Description of Organisation: School for Social Entrepreneurs Cornwall was established as a Community Interest Company (CIC) eleven years ago. Supporting people to develop their personal and professional skills simultaneously; we design and deliver programmes and courses that equip people to start, scale and strengthen organisations that make a positive difference; mobilising the experience of people from all backgrounds and support them to use entrepreneurial approaches to create lasting social and environmental change. Through this work our ambition is to create a fair and equal society where the potential of all people is fully realised.

Name of Employer: Sally Heard

Job Title: SSE Director

Internship Scheme used:   A2I, SBP

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

Student Business Partnership (SBP) – Employment Services – University of Exeter


What role did your intern undertake?

Each year we hold a prestigious Graduation ceremony.  We applied for a Marketing Intern over the summer. The primary aim of the role was to work alongside the SSE team to design a Graduation booklet showcasing each of our students graduating from our Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs Trade Up programme.

The primary focus of the role was to work with the students to create a page each within the booklet to showcase their social enterprises. The outcome required of the internship was to create a digital version of the booklet incorporating social media links and profile pictures. We also required a version that could be used in printed format as required. Alongside this key task, our intern was welcomed (and rose brilliantly) to the challenge of being involved other activities including team meetings and occasionally joining programme delivery days.

Was your intern ready for the workplace?

Our intern was exceptional, she joined us pre to starting her internship so we could introduce her to our students that she would be working with.  She then successfully built a good working relationship with each of the students who took part in the Lloyds’ programme.

She was extremely personable from the beginning, and was able to communicate effectively her role, what she needed to achieve and what the timescales were. She was really excited about the project and this came across in every aspect of her work. The intern’s communication skills and personal attributes were so valuable to us.

Communication was such an important aspect of the project, and one of the most difficult things about it. The intern created a good bond with the students and was successful as a result of this. She also had to build trust in a very short space of time with a well-established cohort of social enterprises and she was able to do this quickly and effectively. She had a lovely, sunny personality, which was backed up with great skill, making her really easy to work with.

Did the intern achieve their objectives?

The project was completed brilliantly. It was a time constrained piece of work and the intern was working in extraordinary times. She was unable to meet with any of the students in person. She worked with portrait pictures for each student case study and one of her tasks was to consider how these portraits could be displayed in a more innovative and creative way. She came up with the idea of using a selection of different pictures to create a new image which combined all the elements. This was achieved through the use of the CANVA design software, which was used to collate and produce the booklet.

Our interns gain an experience of working in a social enterprise and what this means, as well as what makes them who they are. And in return, they bring a high level of skill into the organisation.

Was the internship beneficial to your company?

Without access to this funded internship, we would probably have had to outsource this piece of work. Although we have the skills present within the team, we did not have the capacity to dedicate to this piece of work. As a result, this project has been of real value to the organisation.

The delivery of the student internship with the University of Exeter was an extremely positive experience. We felt that we were fully supported through the whole process by Jo (in the Career Zone) and her team. It was a very beneficial placement and the internship provided real pleasure to everyone involved, as well has having been of benefit as a skills exchange.

Quote from the Intern:

“I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at SSE Cornwall and believe that it has made me a more well-rounded and adaptable employee. I have truly learnt the meaning of “making the best of a bad situation”, as I have seen first-hand how small business owners have had to adjust and triumph in the face of adversity (Covid19). Moreover, SSE themselves – and the fantastic team – had to move all their teaching and resources online and have remained just as successful and engaging as ever, even introducing a new Women’s Enterprise programme despite the pandemic.”

School for Social Entrepreneurs Cornwall- Student Case Study

Cornwall School for Social Entrepreneurs Internship

Understandably, many of us only have negative connotations of 2020. It has become the year of devastation, cancellations, and unprecedented times. However, what could have been the most depressing summer of my life turned into a time filled with new experiences as a result of my internship with the Cornwall School for Social Entrepreneurs.

Tell us about yourself. 

I was an English student in my third and final year at the University of Exeter, and I was overwhelmed by the breadth and scale of potential jobs available to me. Whilst teaching, writing, and publishing are the obvious outcomes for an English graduate, I knew that there were other organisations and sectors in which my skillset could prove useful. Moreover, I hope to stay in the South West, so it was vital for me to find out what kind of jobs were available in the Devon and Cornwall area. I found the Career Zone to be incredibly useful as there were more jobs of interest to me than I could have imagined; just knowing that creative organisations existed in the South West was enough for me and it gave me hope that I would find a career.

What did your Internship consist of?

I decided that the best way to get a sense of some of this work going on in Cornwall would be through an internship. Hence, my application for a marketing internship at SSE Cornwall. The 6-week internship (later extended to 7 weeks) began in June, just after I had finished my degree. It could not have been timed more perfectly as I was ready for something new. Initially a role based around the creation of the booklet needed for an upcoming SSE student graduation ceremony, the position quickly developed, and I found myself undertaking other administrative responsibilities. I had to deal with a range of people running a variety of fantastic organisations on a day-to-day basis; I put together newsletters and spreadsheets; and I joined in on a few classes (via zoom!) so that I could get a sense of the work that goes on at SSE.

It was truly inspiring to speak to the current cohort and learn about how their ideas had grown into fully fledged enterprises with a social purpose and meaning. It made me proud and excited to live in Cornwall and introduced me to a wonderful sector – and community – that I otherwise would not have encountered.

After the chaos and uncertainty of this year, it was important that we highlighted the adaptations and changes that these people – and their businesses – had undergone; we included statements from each student in the booklet about how the pandemic had affected their enterprise and I went on to write a blog that captured some of these businesses and the hardships they had faced. It was a very proud moment to see my writing on the SSE website and made me really feel as though I had become part of the team.

Did you enjoy your internship, what did you learn?

I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at SSE Cornwall and believe that it has made me a more well-rounded and adaptable employee. I have truly learnt the meaning of “making the best of a bad situation”, as I have seen first-hand how small business owners have had to adjust and triumph in the face of adversity. Moreover, SSE themselves – and the fantastic team – had to move all their teaching and resources online and have remained just as successful and engaging as ever, even introducing a new Women’s Enterprise programme despite the pandemic.

I learnt how to engage with a range of people (remotely of course!); I listened to emotive stories with empathy and discussed vulnerable topics with understanding; I thought creatively in a time of crisis; and – perhaps most importantly – I had to discipline myself and generate a home-work routine that was efficient and successful. I am confident that all the skills above will contribute to making my job search that bit easier in the future.

Would you recommend doing an internship, and why?

I cannot recommend doing an internship enough. It gave me fantastic insight that I just would not have been able to experience otherwise, and it taught me that the most sufficient means of learning is through doing, meeting people, and thinking creatively. Internships are ideal as you can work with a deadline in mind. Whether you discover that you hate the industry and want to move on to something else, or you find that you have found the job for you and thus know how long you have to make the most of the opportunity, 4-6 week internships are a fantastic investment of your time and energy. You can build a network of contacts and make connections that can lead to future employment. Moreover, you will stand out to employers as you have gone the extra mile to learn about the various employment options available to you.