The SIE Blog

SIE Interns Tackle Saltire Internships

The SIE Interns are a talented lot! Not content with twiddling their thumbs during summer, two of our Senior Interns applied to the Saltire Foundation’s undergraduate intern programme. We found out what they got up to and why you should consider applying next year.

P. 11 Martin Nemecek.JPG

Martin Nemecek was our 2015/16 Senior SIE Intern at the University of Stirling. He completed his Saltire internship at Zurich Insurance Company in Switzerland.

Why did you apply to Saltire?

Some of my closest friends have completed their internships through the Saltire Foundation in the past, and they all agreed that it was one of the best experiences of their lives! I have researched the Saltire Scholar program further and when I saw how many benefits there were – from superb work experience to world-class learning, from great networking opportunities to global perspectives… not to apply just wasn’t an option.

What have you learned so far? Have you developed any new skills?

The internship has been a great learning so far. My work is focused mainly around the Mastering Service Excellence program, which is a global learning initiative designed to equip its participants with new behaviours and skills necessary to become trusted advisors to their business partners and to deliver service excellence. I have a lot of independence in how I achieve the required aims and I work with many senior people across the organisation on daily basis. As you can imagine, I have improved many of my skills and since people in Zurich Insurance are very approachable, I have also established many new relationships.

Would you recommend a Saltire internships to other students?

My Saltire experience has been one of the best things I have done at the university. Not only I would recommend it to other students, but I have already recommended it to many of my friends. Internships don’t get much better than this. The best thing is, that your Saltire experience doesn’t end when you complete the internship. You’ll become a member of the alumni group and will benefit for many years to come.


P.11 Michaela Hruskova


Michaela Hruskova was our 2015/16 Senior SIE Intern at the University if Glasgow. She completed her Saltire internship at 4J Studios/Tayforth Consulting in Dundee as a Business Development Intern.

Why did you apply to Saltire?

I applied for the Saltire Scholar Programme because I believe that it is the most prestigious internship opportunity for entrepreneurially-minded students in Scotland. I knew that as a Scholar, I would be given responsibility for challenging projects with a real impact on the business. As an aspiring entrepreneur, I also wanted to gain some experience in a smaller company which I could use in my future business. In addition, I think that the Saltire community and alumni network connect some incredibly talented people, who are passionate about Scotland and believe in its potential, and I wanted to be part of that network too.

What have you learned so far? Have you developed any new skills?

During the past few weeks, I have learned a lot about business planning and especially building financial forecast models in Excel. Since I have been working on my projects independently, I have learned to rely on my skills which has made me more confident about my abilities. Also, the business planning skills that I have learned will certainly prove invaluable when I start my business in the future.

Would you recommend a Saltire internships to other students?

I would absolutely recommend applying for the Saltire Scholar Programme to others. I think that it is a unique opportunity for students to spend 8-12 weeks working on a challenging, real-life project for their host company. All Scholars learn some new skills, become more confident, and grow their professional network which will be beneficial for their future careers.


P.11 Saltire Foundation Logo


Sara Nelson from Saltire Foundation says;

“A Saltire internship provides undergraduate students with a real insight into the commercial world. Projects all have significance to the company you are working with and therefore, right from the beginning, you can be sure to have an impact. Saltire Scholars also benefit from the network around them which supports and connects the individual to a world of opportunities that were never previously realised.

In the past 12 months, the Saltire Foundation has also become a founding partner in the creation of Entrepreneurial Scotland, an organisation dedicated to making Scotland the most entrepreneurial society in the world. Scholars have the opportunity to join this new network and take advantage of the numerous events, job opportunities and mentoring programmes we have to offer.”

Applications for 2017 Saltire Scholars will be open from October – November 2016. To apply to become a Saltire Scholar you must be:

– In your penultimate year of undergraduate study at a Scottish university.

– Completing your full course of study at a Scottish university.  Students from Scottish universities studying abroad for a year or semester can still apply.

– Passionate about representing Scotland and building a more dynamic and vibrant Scottish economy for the future.

This article originally featured in Ignite magazine, issue 14

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