This Summer Internship programme was established over ten years ago. It’s aimed at ethnic minority students and those from under-represented socio-economic backgrounds. It’s an award-winning, paid internship programme that provides talented undergraduates and graduates with a six-to-nine-week training work placement within a government department. We’ve designed it to give you an insight into the broad range of opportunities available across the Civil Service. By the end of the internship, you should feel confident in your ability to apply for the Fast Stream. 

It’s a great way to prepare for a place on one of our Fast Stream Graduate Programmes – and that could lead to many fascinating career paths at the heart of the UK Government. Two months on the internship programme could change your life.

What can I expect?

  • Between six and nine weeks placed within a government department.
  • The chance to be involved in stretching and challenging project-related work, including research, supporting projects, assisting on policy documents, shadowing senior civil servants and attending critical meetings with senior advisors on major issues.
  • An allocated Fast Stream buddy and a scheme manager to oversee you.
  • A departmental induction.
  • A Corporate Welcoming Reception in early June and a Closing Reception in September. Both events include high profile speakers.
  • A training allowance of £350 per week (in London) or £300 (outside London).
  • Expenses for attending our corporate events.

This is an opportunity for you to experience first-hand if a career in the Civil Service is for you. Apart from forming lasting friendships with other interns, you will also have access to a wide range of people – Fast Streamers, line managers and senior leaders, who will be able to provide you with additional support and advice during and after your placement. At the end of your placement, you will receive an appraisal report on your performance which can be used as a reference in future job opportunities or as a way of helping you to continuously improve or enhance your skills and experience.

What do we look for?

  • You need to be in your penultimate or final year at university. This can include post graduate studies immediately following your first degree.
  • You will need at least a 2:2 degree (expected or awarded).
  • A real interest in wanting to pursue a career in the Civil Service.
  • Demonstrable team working skills.
  • Innovation and creativity.
  • Flexibility in working with people at varying levels. 
  • Strong motivation to make an impact on major policy issues or service delivery.

And of course, you’ll need to demonstrate the key competencies we expect from all our Fast Streamers.

Eligibility and selection process

To be eligible, you must be an undergraduate or graduate with at least a 2:2 degree (expected or awarded) in your penultimate or final year at university. This can include postgraduate studies immediately following your first degree. 

You must also be from one of the following black and minority ethnic backgrounds and/or from a lower socio-economic background (this will be checked when you apply):

  • Asian – Bangladeshi/ Indian/ Pakistani/ Chinese or any other Asian background
  • Black – African/ Caribbean or any other Black background
  • Mixed - White and Asian/ White and Black African/ White and Black Caribbean or any other Mixed ethnic background

We measure socio-economic background through a standard approach, reflecting parental occupational, management responsibility and organisational type. 

The programme is open to UK nationals and Commonwealth and EEA citizens. You can find out more about nationality and immigration requirements. If you are successful for a Fast Stream scheme in the same competition year, you will need to withdraw your internship application. 

You can apply for the Summer Diversity Internship Programme regardless of whether you have applied for a Fast Stream scheme.

Selection process

Initial sift

You will take the same online tests as all other applicants to the Fast Stream recruitment schemes. If successful at these online tests, you will be assessed on an online application form. After the application window has passed, we will begin sifting application forms. This will be completed by the end of February.

Final selection Interviews

If you pass the initial sift, you will be short-listed for a telephone interview. Interviews take place from March through to early April.

Department allocation

At this stage, you will be provisionally allocated a department. 

A final selection decision will be undertaken, in liaison with the department.

You will need to be available for work between June and September 2014.