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Supported internships

What are supported internships?

We offer supported internships for young people who want to work in competitive employment. The unpaid supported internships form part of the intern’s education and equip autistic young people with the skills needed for adulthood and employment.

The programme takes place in a business setting. Learners are totally immersed in the workplace, learning through continuous feedback, and gaining real employability and competitive work skills.

Who is it for?

  • Are you 16-25 years old with an Education, Health, and Care (EHC) plan?
  • Are you autistic or have a related learning difficulty?
  • Would you like to get a paid job in the future?
  • Are you an independent traveller?


If you answered yes to the above, a Supported Internship with Ambitious College could be the opportunity for you!

Our Partnership Model

Ambitious College, using the Project Search model, works with the Whittington Hospital and Chessington World of Adventures Resort to support interns develop workplace skills.

The programme runs from September for one academic year, with interns based at the workplace five days a week.

Supported internships also benefit employers to learn what young people with additional needs can contribute and achieve.

Whittington Education Centre

Information session
Meet recent graduates, current interns, and the team who manage the programme.

Dates to follow

Skills assessment and interview day

Dates to follow

Chessington World of Adventures

Information session
Meet the team who manage the programme and learn about internships available.

Dates to follow


Skills assessment and interview day 

Dates to follow

Reserve your place today
Please note that all events are by invitation only. Reserve a space via Eventbrite or by contacting our team at

How to apply

Candidates must meet the following criteria in order to be eligible to apply for an internship:

  • aged 16-25 years old with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan
  • is autistic or has a related learning difficulty
  • have an interest to move into employment
  • interested in spending a year learning new skills or developing existing skills in the workplace
  • be an independent traveller or working towards independence.


If you are accepted through the first stage, you will be invited to attend a selection event with the programme tutor and job coach.

Find out more about our supported internships programme taking place at Whittington Hospital and Chessington World of Adventures.

What does a typical day include?

A typical day includes:

  • classroom instruction in employability and independent living skills 
  • participation at one or more internship rotations 
  • social interaction within their internship department 
  • regular feedback from the instructor, job coaches, and business colleagues.

How we support you

Individualised internships and job development continue throughout the year. These are based on an individual’s strengths, skills, and interests. Interns are supported through on-the-job coaching and improvement strategies, the ultimate goal being to help them obtain paid employment and live independently.

This is an exciting opportunity for young people who are eligible to learn a wide variety of skills ranging from housekeeping, administration, portering, and customer service.

Benefits of supported internships 

Supported internships are a great opportunity for young people with autism to combine work with their education. Benefits of a supported internship include:

  • learning new skills that could be used in future employment
  • building confidence and life skills
  • support from trained job coaches to help you succeed increase social networks
  • travel and lunch contribution (The Whittington Hospital)
  • travel bursary available (Chessington Resort)
  • lunch discount (Chessington Resort)
  • opportunities to gain accredited and practical qualifications.


Hear what our interns, their families, and our partners are saying about the supported internships programme.

Meet our team

Meet our supported internships staff team, who support our interns throughout the programme.