Find out how Be. Lab’s Tertiary Internship programme provided Amy the opportunity to gain valuable corporate experience, leading to a job she loves, in an industry she had never considered.
Representing New Zealand in competitive rowing for 5 years, Amy knows how to work hard to achieve her goals. Embracing nature and her close network of family and friends has shaped the grounded person she is today. And today, Amy is a 25-year-old living life to the full -tramping or surfing on the weekend and excelling in a job she loves throughout the week.
During the final year of her business degree, Amy decided to seek an internship to gain corporate experience. After several months of applying for internships and attending multiple interviews, Amy was yet to secure a position.
“I wasn’t a straight A student”, she explains. Amy has dyslexia, which gives her a unique ability to think visually. Although written communication isn’t her strong point, she is an eloquent verbal communicator and excels in many other areas of her life.
“Growing up my parents constantly reminded me of my strengths despite my challenges with dyslexia”, Amy explains. “So, it was frustrating that my grades seemed to be the sole focus during interviews. I felt overlooked because of my academic record”.
Amy was close to giving up when an advert for Be. Lab’s tertiary internship programme caught her eye. She reached out and received a phone call the very next day.
"Having someone in my corner was amazing" says Amy as she recalls her experience working with Be. Lab.
We supported Amy leading up to interviews, including question preparation and practice runs. We also transformed her CV by highlighting her strengths and as Amy says, “bringing it to life”.
Most of all, we helped Amy appreciate her unique strengths and reminded her of the importance of being proud and open about her dyslexia. We encouraged her that the right employer would look past her grades and see the many incredible qualities she had to offer.
It didn’t take long for Amy to secure a paid 12-week internship at Westpac. More than an opportunity for work experience, our unique programme also includes tailored wrap-around support, to ensure candidates are work place ready. Amy was paired with a mentor, a successful team leader at Ernest & Young, who provided valuable guidance over the coming months.
Amy was still completing her degree when she began her internship at Westpac. Between working and studying, it was a hectic season, but she rose to the challenge and excelled on both fronts. So much so, that she was offered a full-time position at Westpac as a Change Analyst. “I never thought I’d work at a bank”, she laughs. “And I certainly never thought I’d work in technology – but here I am. I love it”.
Since securing the role, Amy’s communication skills (and confidence!) have grown ten-fold. She loves how collaborative the working environment is, and how open, flexible and supportive Westpac are.
Melinda Brown, Change Manager at Westpac, says of Amy: "Amy is so eager to learn. I have handed over multiple projects to her and she has always done such a great job. I have loved watching her grow".
With a recent promotion increasing her responsibility, Amy is continuing to work hard to increase her business knowledge and lay the foundation for future growth. It was during the interview for her new role when Amy realised how far she had come - she spoke openly and proudly about her dyslexia.
“Be. Lab reminded me that being neuro-diverse isn’t a disadvantage, but it’s actually my greatest strength”.
Brimming with ideas, Amy has aspirations of organisational thought leadership. Her passion is in organisational culture and people change, and one day she would love to lead a team of like-minded changemakers. She has big goals, and with her proven resilience, work ethic and creative mind, she will no doubt achieve them.
Amy is grateful to Be. Lab’s Talent Shop for supporting her on her journey so far. She would recommend them to anyone with big goals like her who need support in stepping into their chosen career.
“Be. Lab were so encouraging and supportive. Having a team around me who really understood me and advocated for me made all the difference.”
Be. Lab's Talent Shop matches talented individuals with access needs or health conditions to meaningful roles with leading employers across New Zealand.