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Supported internships if you have an education, health and care plan

A supported internship is an unpaid work-based study programme. It’ll help you take the first step from education into the workplace while gaining the skills you need to get a paid job. 

What you’ll do as a supported intern

You’ll spend most of your time as a supported intern in the workplace to develop skills you need for work.

A supported internship includes:

  • an unpaid work placement of at least 6 months
  • support from a qualified job coach
  • a personalised study programme, including English and maths skills

Entry requirements for supported internships

You need to be aged 16 to 24 and have an education, health and care (EHC) plan to start a supported internship.

Qualification you’ll earn

Supported internships mostly focus on teaching you the general skills you need for work.

However, your study programme might include the chance to study a relevant qualification at a level that’s suitable for you.

Finding a supported internship

You can apply for supported internships through your school or college.

After your supported internship

The aim of a supported internship is to prepare you for working in a paid job.

After you have completed it, you could get a paid job at the same place you did your supported internship or you could look for a job with a different employer.

You could also carry on training by doing something like an apprenticeship.

Help and advice

You can get help and advice from:

  • Disability Rights UK: information, advice and resources for disabled students
  • Preparing for Adulthood: guidance on supported internships and study programmes for young people with a disability or learning difficulty
  • Talking Futures support for parents and guardians looking to explore education and career options with their child
  • Access to Work: help to find or stay in work if you have a physical or mental health condition, including financial support