"I left with incredible memories, amazing friendships, and so many resources and skills that I know I will use for many years down the line."
Hannah first joined The Internship after choosing to take a gap year before university and then came back for a second time after completing her degree in 2012. After two life-changing years on The Internship she recounts how she saw her life change during that time and how it still has an impact in her career to this day.
You can read more inspiring stories from The KCI Internship Alumni here.
How did you end up doing The Internship?
The first year I had just finished sixth form and I knew that I wanted to have a gap year before I went to university. God had put it on my heart to be an intern. I didn't know what to expect, but God just spoke to me and told me to do it! So, I took that step of faith and it was very much worthwhile.
And for the second time?
I had just finished university and God had been speaking to me about pursuing a career in teaching. However, I needed to gain more experience within a school before applying to do my PGCE. I decided to take another year out and gain that experience within The King's House School, Windsor.
Why did you choose The King's House School, Windsor?
I had been to a number of different interviews in other schools but I just didn't like the environment there. Again, God really put it on my heart to do The Internship and be part of what He was doing in the new school they were building.
How was it worthwhile doing it twice?
What I'm doing now has all come from my decisions to do The Internship! The first year gave me time to understand what my calling was and learn what I really wanted with my life. When I came back for the second time I was able to practically learn about those things and gain experience in the very specific areas that I wanted pursue. God spoke to me about having a career that would influence children's lives and where I could make a real difference. Had I been doing training in another school I don't think I would have had the level of responsibility that I was given on The Internship. They really value you and see your true potential in the office and so trust you with a lot more.
What did you notice about the King's House School, Windsor?
The heart for the school is in tune with everything I believe as a Christian. They really love and cherish the kids and want to prepare them for the future. I think, as well as that, The Internship itself has so much to offer compared to lots of other places. It's not just a year to gain experience and move on but a year that you really love and enjoy and develop in your calling in and out of your role. A year where you are surrounded by people who love you and believe in you. I think that was the biggest difference for me. I was in an environment where God could speak to me so clearly and I could get direction for the future. It was more than just teacher training.
You mentioned that the Internship offered a lot more outside of your individual role. What other experiences did you have?
It was a real opportunity to draw closer to God and grow in my spiritual life. The whole atmosphere in the church office is so unique. It's amazing to have people all around you who you can go to for advice and who you truly share life with. I had the opportunity to travel to Colombia and to South Africa with some of those people too which was incredible. I got to see the G12 Vision right at the roots in Bogota and being there just brought everything to life and really planted the vision in my heart. From there I went on to planning and leading assemblies with over 300 kids in Robertson, South Africa! It was life changing. I think everything gave me a great foundation for when I finished the Internship and had to model the same culture when I was in other places.
It's been a number of years now since you were on The internship. Does your experience still have an impact today?
How I deal with a lot of issues at my workplace is different because of The Internship. The King's House School's first priority is to love the kids and protect the students wellbeing. It taught me a lot about grace and how to react in certain situations. It's changed the way that I work and react to things in everyday life as a teacher. I learnt to be very conscious of the way that I speak and communicate with my students.
Also, the variety of experience and responsibility that I had during my years on The internship has given me such a wide set of skills and greater understanding of how to be a leader that I don't think you can get anywhere else. It just gave me that boost to know that I can do this, that I do have a calling, that I do have the potential! And of course it taught me a lot of practical lessons of how to be who I wanted to be. I think I picked things up a lot quicker and was more prepared for my my career today thanks to my time as an intern.
Why do you think people should choose The Internship?
I think what The Internship offers is very unique. There definitely aren't many places that will be able to provide the same amount of development and growth in every area of your life. The level of responsibility that you are given and the trust that is put on you has really built a foundation that is helping me in my career today. I feel more equipped to teach, to train and to lead because of my years as an intern. The church team see your full potential and they invest everything they can to help you reach that potential. That is especially unique for employers that know you are just going to be there for a year. It's an investment into the rest of your life and building a foundation for whatever you move into next. Also, in terms of relationships, I made some of my closest friends on The Internship. Not to sound cliche, but you leave as such a well-rounded person! I have incredible memories, amazing friendships, and have been given so many resources and skills that I know I will use for many years to come.