Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme Internship Update

Last Summer, I was looking for internship opportunities to build on skills and gain experience. Fortunately, I got tagged on LinkedIn by #MaryDuffy to apply for the Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme. Going through all the application stages, I was successfully selected as one of the interns in October 2021. The Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme is a personal and professional development programme targeted at 50 young people from minority backgrounds between the ages of 18-25 across Scotland. This programme seeks to help people break the barriers to accessing leadership positions and appreciating a career in public service.

I was placed at Neighbourhood Networks to intern. Neighbourhood Networks is a charity that supports vulnerable adults with physical, learning, and mental disabilities to be fully involved within their local communities while living independently. My duties were to work on their social media handles mainly Instagram by designing posts and creating content. I was also involved in assisting with a virtual conference and an in-person event to mark their 20th Anniversary.

While I worked on content writing and making posts, I learned the value of hashtags and the branding guidelines of the organisation. These skills were strengthened by attending training sessions on Canva. Other training sessions included learning how to use analytics to show how well the contents I made on Instagram paid off. In addition, I used Buffer, a social media management tool to organise posts to be delivered at a specific time of the day.

Prior to Neighbourhood’s Network virtual conference in March, we had a lot of preparation. I collated guest speakers’ profiles and designed and made content for them to be advertised on all social media handles. This was to create awareness of the conference. Moreover, I helped in proofreading the Annual Report showcasing all the activities of the members. It was a great skill to learn and to have received feedback for it. Alongside, I learned how to work independently and to research tasks I was not aware of. Some of these were editing videos, sending emails to organisations that were British Sign Language Interpreters for the conference, and learning Gantt charts to assist my manager with projects. Furthermore, I joined zoom training sessions on hosting a webinar for the conference.

In May, I assisted with a big event in Falkirk to climax the charity’s anniversary celebrations. A lot of work went into it. I advertised for awareness, helped with refreshments, and actively participated in choreography with members and staff. It was memorable.

These experiences are building my knowledge and helping me to learn how to transfer these into the world of work. All these skills sit alongside my Biomedical Science degree.

I am grateful to have worked with #DonnaHegarty, my manager. She has great people skills which I have learned to use in the workplace. To the CEO, #HeatherCalvo, I am grateful to you too. To the staff, it has been great getting to know them all and the best team so far, I have met.

Lastly, I am grateful to #JohnSmithCentre for creating this invaluable opportunity and to #MaryDuffy. To my mentor #MarkWong, thank you for wanting to work with me.

#JohnSmithIntern, #MEELP @JohnSmithCentre, #NeighbourhoodNetworks

Written by Michelle Amoah

Minority Ethnic Emerging Leaders Programme Intern at Neighbourhood Networks