Manchester Airport helps neurodiverse young people see their careers take off


-          Young people celebrate graduating from the airport’s Supported Internship programme

-          The year-long programme gave them the opportunity to be supported in learning different roles around the airport

-          Now they will go on to the world of work with some taking on roles at the airport

Six neurodiverse young people celebrated graduating from Manchester Airport’s Supported Internships programme. Last week.

The programme, run by Pure Innovations and The Manchester College in partnership with Manchester Airport Group (MAG), runs for a year, during which interns are supported to do three different placements around the airport.   

It gives young people who ordinarily might find it difficult to get employment the opportunity to get on-the-job training in a supported environment, with help on-hand during the placements and when applying for work at the end of it.

On Thursday, 29 June, Callum Wyness, 19, Hannah Fellowes, 21, Sahad Nasir, 20, Oliver Foy, 24, Briony Conaghan, 19, and Jakob Kosiorek, 20, all celebrated graduating at the end of the scheme during a ceremony at Manchester Airport’s Aerozone education centre.

Lisa Griffiths, senior employment officer at Pure Innovations, said:

“We’ve been working with Manchester Airport since 2015, delivering the supported internship for neurodiverse students with additional educational needs.

“The students get to learn real jobs, in and around the airport whilst also learning employments skills in class sessions.  Our students amaze us each year in their dedication and commitment to learning and developing. Almost all the students go on to secure paid work and are an absolute credit to their employers.”

Joanna Jackson, education manager at Manchester Airport, added:

“Inspiring the next generation is crucial to building a more diverse and equitable workplace, so it is fantastic to hear that the students on this year’s Airport supported internship have all done so well.

“Our commitment to providing skills and education support and training is longstanding. We have supported thousands of young people and jobseekers across the length and breadth of our airport catchment areas into training and employment.”

The several of the graduates will take jobs at the airport with others taking jobs at external companies or considering offers.  

Sahad said: “When I first started I was nervous, but now I’ve got a job at Amazon and I love it.”

Oliver said: “When I first started the internship I was anxious, I didn’t know what it was about. But I shortly started to get the hang of it. I got paid job and I really enjoyed my time and met good friends and new colleagues and I’m really excited about the future.”

Jakob said: “Thank you for accepting me onto the Internship, I’ve grown in confidence.”

Briony said: “Starting an internship was very scary and intimidating, but when you are around the right kind of people who support you, it becomes second nature.”

Callum said: “I did two placements, both were good and hopefully I’m going to get a paid job.”

Hannah said: “I already have had a job but got different experience. I settled in really well and made new friends.”

The programme has been running for eight years. During that time 72 young people have graduated from it.

If you are interested in finding out more about Supported Internships you can visit The Manchester College’s website: https://www.tmc.ac.uk/courses/supported-internship/

Or you can contact: Lisa.Griffiths@pureinnovations.co.uk