We are delighted to announce that we have been shortlisted for the Keele University ‘Breaking the Mould’ award in the cultivating talent category!
As a Board of Trustees, for the past 10 years, we have cooperated digitally across the whole of the UK. We are fully supportive of each other and pull together to meet the aims and objectives of the SMS Foundation UK. It was a natural progression to retain this ethos when we became a staffed organisation in 2020, embracing the emerging agile, family-friendly fully flexible work-from-home culture. This applies to everyone who is part of our organisation including the multiple interns that we have recruited through Keele University Careers & Employability Service. These included Xheni Prebibaj and Natasha Craven for a summer internship to determine the demographics profile of SMS, Liam Offermanns to perform an internship informing our community on visual impairment, and most recently Isaac Ramsey, Emily Allen, Jesica Antwi, Charly Freeman, and Jack Medlin to perform extensive research capturing information on health, education, and adult life to empower our community and produce resources that will not only be useful for families and professionals who support an individual with SMS, but also the UK and global rare disease community.
These interns have performed extensive literature research, data capture from the community, and quite demanding data analysis to produce resources such as guidebooks, medical and behaviour passports, maps of health and behaviour interventions and key life events to name but a few! These resources are revolutionising the lives of not only our family members and professionals, but we are also currently working with global rare organisation partners to enable every single person with a rare disease to thrive.
“As one of the students taking part in this wonderful internship opportunity, I can firmly say it was one of the best experiences I have had whilst studying at Keele University. Should the Smith-Magenis Syndrome Foundation be offering any more internships out to Keele Students in the future, I would advise them to grab the opportunity with both hands and treasure it, as for me it has not only been a phenomenal experience but has also opened up many doors for me.”
We are also delighted to have been able to support project opportunities for students from other universities including Aston, Cardiff, Dundee, and Napier.
The ‘Breaking the Mould’ awards shine a spotlight on the growing innovation-led organisations, businesses, not-for-profits and charities that have benefitted from the suite of innovative support programmes that are available from Keele University.
Student placements aim to improve the skills and attributes gained from their degree, enabling them to apply subject knowledge and theory to real-world practice. The experience also helps students to explore career options and improve their chances of getting a graduate job.
The winners will be announced on Thursday the 13th of October. Please keep your fingers crossed for us!