Finding employment opportunities through the Employ Autism programme
For my internship through Ambitious about Autism, I was a finance intern at King’s College Hospital where I shadowed professional accountants and learnt how an NHS trust operates financially.
The recruitment process was quite easy as I had done previous interviews for various jobs and had gained more confidence to apply for job applications, as well as present myself professionally during interviews.
The interview process
I prepared for the NHS interview by conducting research into King’s College Hospital, such as their values, and I discovered how inclusive the trust’s work culture was – which attracted me more towards the internship.
The interviewers had emailed me the questions that would be asked beforehand, which was extremely useful and had made me feel calmer as I was able to plan out my responses to the questions in advance.
Starting the internship
I was excited to start the placement as I had never had proper experience of working a nine to five internship. During my internship I learnt how invoices were processed through the accounting software that the finance department used, and I learnt more about how cost is calculated and recorded within their accounting records. I was also tasked with analysing a large amount of data that contained different business cases and present my findings in a report during a team meeting.
The most enjoyable part of the internship for me was when I was working within the management corporate team within the finance department. The work I was tasked with was to confirm the existence of transactions that were recorded within the accounting system and identifying the classification of those transactions.
This experience had allowed me to apply my own prior knowledge of accounting from my first year of my degree, as well as previous studies. I learnt that I was more suited to work within an office environment as I had enjoyed the inclusive atmosphere within the office, where my colleagues would assist me in my tasks as well as educate me on using the accounting software that was used.
Reasonable adjustments in the workplace
As for the reasonable adjustments that were made at Kings College Hospital, I was given a schedule of the days that I would be working throughout my internship. I was also given a plan for the first day when I was introduced to my colleagues, and I met my line manager at the train station to show me where the office was.
Developing my skills
After I completed the internship at King’s College Hospital, I found that I had developed a great interest in pursing a career within the accounting profession and had enjoyed working with the NHS.
By having developed a professional relationship with my line managers I was able to get a reference to apply for a placement year with the NHS and was successful in my application to get a placement with King’s College Hospital. I look forward to working again with my line managers to further my career as an accounting professional.
Building confidence in a professional environment
Overall, the internship that I had secured with Ambitious about Autism had allowed me to not only further my professional experience but had also allowed me to apply accounting theory that I had learnt from my studies to a real-life scenario and as a result had allowed me to boost my confidence in working within a professional environment.
I highly recommend others to take part in the Ambitious about Autism employment programme as it offers opportunities for individuals to gain professional experience, as well as boost their confidence.
About the author:
Thomas is an autistic young person that completed a work placement through the Employ Autism programme.
Employ Autism Programme
Check out our current paid internship opportunities for autistic people aged 18+ on our work experience opportunities page.