Santander Employability Scheme

The Santander Employability Scheme is one of many ways that Santander Universities supports Abertay’s current students and recent graduates. Learn more about the scheme and meet some of the students and organisations that have benefited from taking part.

What is the Santander Employability Scheme?

The Santander Employability Scheme (previously known as the Santander Internship Programme) offers a current Abertay student or recent graduate (up to two years after graduation) the opportunity to undertake a fully paid short-term work project with a small and medium-sized enterprise (SME).

Work projects are managed by the Careers Service and can range from two to three weeks (based on a 35-hour working week). Projects usually run during the summer vacation. However, they can start earlier in the second semester to fit around a student’s study commitments. These tend to be on a flexible part-time basis.

Information for students and recent graduates


  • Receive a Bursary while on the project
  • Gain workplace experience
  • Demonstrate your skills and creativity
  • Input to projects and business development
  • Enhance your employability, CV and work preparedness


The scheme is open to all current matriculated Abertay University undergraduate students, postgraduate students, and those who have graduated from the University within the last two years.

If you are a PhD student, we will require further information on any Studentships or other funding you may be receiving. In addition, we will need to know if you are contractually obligated to work any minimum hours of work towards your PhD.

Check advertised projects for suitability, as criteria differs depending upon organisational requirements.


  • Successful individuals will be paid a bursary of approximately £332.50 per week (based on a 35 hour working week = full time equivalent), and depending on the type of project
  • Projects can be full-time or part-time on a flexible basis.
    • Projects are a minimum of 70 hours in total (2 weeks full time equivalent) and up to a maximum of 105 hours in total (3 weeks full time equivalent)
  • You must consider your eligibility to work in the UK to undertake a work project. Details regarding work eligibility and visas can be found at
  • The organisation offering the project will work directly with the student/graduate and make explicit arrangements with them concerning expectations, hours of work, responsibilities, and overall goals described in this agreement
  • The organisation will provide the student/graduate with a full induction to the organisation, including Health & Safety procedures, and outlining any statutory legislation covering, for example, the need for client confidentiality, intellectual property rights and data protection
  • If you are offered a project through the scheme, you will be required to sign an agreement document
  • Abertay University will pay a Bursary directly to you on the last working day of each calendar month for the duration of the project
  • Projects usually start in early summer, but can have a flexible start date
  • Students are required to see a Careers Adviser or Programme Coordinator before making an application to any project provided via the scheme to check for suitability
  • Applications will usually be in the form of a covering letter and CV. These will be collated by the Careers Service. Applications will then be forwarded to the organisation for selection
  • Project offers are made by the host SME
  • You are required to complete a short, online Santander feedback form at the end of the internship
  • You can only undertake one Santander work project with an SME in each year

How to get involved

Contact us for current opportunities you can apply to. Alternatively, register your interest in the Scheme and the Administrator will get in touch with relevant opportunities which may be of interest to you when they become available.

Submit an online enquiry through Abertay Connect for a list of opportunities or to register your interest.

If you are a graduate, you may have to register first before submitting an enquiry

Information for employers and SME's


  • Your company is registered and based in the UK
  • You must be an organisation with 250 employees or less
  • Annual turnover of £50 million or less
  • You are a company, start-up, sole trader or partnership

If you’re eligible, funding of up to £1,000 (No VAT) is available to fully fund the student or graduate through the work project – depending on the type of project you choose.

What types of work projects can I offer?

Work projects from all employment areas are encouraged, including: Business and Marketing, Human Resources, Life Sciences, Computer Science/IT, Cybersecurity, Food & Drink, Social Sciences, and much more. 

The projects are a great way to bring innovative ideas to existing projects, address skills or workforce gaps, or head up dedicated projects and campaigns. The Programme is particularly suited to SMEs wishing to employ students or graduates with a view to offering a permanent role post-project.

When considering participating in the scheme, it is essential to have a clear defined project or set of objectives with clearly defined timelines and deadlines which will benefit the SME and also create a valuable learning experience for the student/graduate.

If you wish to discuss flexible part-time projects through the Scheme, please get in touch.


  • All monies from the Santander Fund will be handled by Abertay University
  • Abertay University will pay the student a bursary at the end of each calendar month
  • Student’s/graduate’s bursary will be fully funded by Santander at a rate of approximately £332.50 per week up to a maximum of £1,000 to work on a project for the SME
  • Any additional costs, such as holiday and sick pay, must be met by the organisation as appropriate
  • You cannot apply for further Santander Funding to:
    • Extend an existing work project (if the full £1,000 of funding has been exhausted)
    • Employ the same student or graduate after the project has completed. If the SME wishes to offer the intern a paid position after the project has ended, this will be at the SME’s discretion and be remunerated by the SME
  • The student/graduate will be a participant of the scheme and therefore no contract of employment is required to be offered by the SME to the student

How to get started?

  1. Check you meet the eligibility criteria as outlined above.
  2. Request and complete a Proposal Form and send to
  3. Once we’ve approved your application, we’ll start advertising your internship at an agreed timeframe and collect all applications until the deadline date
  4. We’ll send all applications to you after the deadline date, so you can carry out interviews
    • The SME will inform both successful and unsuccessful candidates at all stages of the recruitment process
  5. You will need to sign the Agreement Form before the project starts.

If you would like to discuss the Scheme further, please email

Reflections from the scheme's past participants

Students and graduates

Headshot photo of Abertay student Jack Sampson

Jack Sampson

Jack secured an internship with Kilmac Ltd and got the opportunity to learn various industry-specific skills to compliment his engineering studies.

Find out more

Headshot photo of Abertay Graduate Robin Lawrence

Robin Lawrence

Computer Arts graduate Robin secured a student internship with Pocket Sized Hands and continues to work for the game studio today.

Find out more

Headshot photo of Abertay Graduate Dawn Dawson

Dawn Dawson

Dawn gained valuable work experience as a graphic design intern for Resonate Dance Company.

Find out more

Employers and SMEs

Posed photo of Pocket Sized Hands Team

Pocket Sized Hands

Games studio Pocket Sized Hands used the scheme as an opportunity to invest in themselves and develop as a company.

Find out more

Fertility Genomics Company Logo

Fertility Genomics

Fertility Genomics created an internship to assist with the launch of their online fertility business.

Find out more

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