DCU Access to the Workplace

Applications for the Access to the Workplace 2022 programme have now closed, if you wish to make a late application please contact A programme timeline can be found here.


DCU Access to the Workplace provides DCU Access students with a high-quality internship during their summer break, hosted by leading Irish companies participating in the programme. 


Using their summer break to gain professional experience related to their degree can significantly enhance a student’s future career prospects and social mobility. However, not all students possess the social and professional networks that can help to secure paid, professional summer work experience. This is particularly true for DCU Access students from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. 

In response, DCU’s Access Service and DCU Educational Trust launched DCU Access to the Workplace, to enable Access students to find high-quality summer employment in established workplaces and to generate a modest income during their summer break. 

Since its establishment in 2019, the programme has received widespread recognition for its excellence and innovation, winning the Best Business and Third Level Institution Collaboration prize at the Education Awards in 2020. DCU Access to the Workplace is also backed by Rethink Ireland’s Children and Youth Fund, which is supporting the programme’s growth and development over a three year period.

Access students are a part of DCU’s Access Programme, the largest programme of its kind in Ireland, supporting nearly 1,200 students in the 2020/2021 academic year. It makes third level education attainable to talented students from socio-economic disadvantaged backgrounds and provides a range of personal, financial and academic support to enable students to thrive and excel in their studies in DCU. 

The commitment of our Access to the Workplace partners is critical in enabling students to save, while also preparing for work in a professional environment and gaining experience in their chosen field.


If you'd like to find out more about the programme, please contact


Who can apply?

Applications will be accepted if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • Second year Access undergraduate student
  • First year Access undergraduate students who commence their INTA placement at the end of their second year
  • Neurodiverse students who are registered and supported by the Disability and Learning Support Service in DCU
Benefits of participating in the programme
  • An opportunity to earn and learn. You will complete a fully paid, professional internship for a minimum of 4 weeks to a maximum of 12 weeks
  • Opportunity to participate in a programme that will equip you with the skills and knowledge necessary to fully participate and engage in a professional work environment
  • Gain an understanding of a particular job or industry and will allow you to consider roles you may not have previously thought of
  • Helps you understand how organisations operate and the challenges they face
  • Provide you with networking opportunities
  • Participate in a tailored Work Readiness Programme that will help you create a professional CV and cover letter, develop you interview skills and gain new skills and knowledge necessary for a work environment
  • Exposure to industry led workshops and events hosted by some of Ireland’s leading Irish companies
  • An opportunity to develop and apply your university learning in a real work setting and enhance your CV for INTRA and/or graduate roles
2022 Timeline

2022 programme timeline can be viewed here.

  • November 2021 - applications open
  • February 2022 - applications close to students
  • February - May 2022 - mandatory Work Readiness Programme
  • April 2022 - matching process takes place
  • June 2022 - internships commence (minimum 4 weeks and maximum 12 weeks)
Internships available

Internships are available in the following sectors:

Business,  Construction and Property,  Engineering,  Finance,  IT and Technology,  Law,  Leisure, Travel and Tourism,  Marketing and communications,  Public Sector,  Retail and Buying,  Science (including pharmaceuticals)

Students who have participated in the programme previously, have had the following roles:

Data Analyst,  Researcher,  Assurance Intern,  HR People Experience Intern,  Tech Support Engineer,  Actuarial Assistant,  Communications Intern,  Engineering Intern,  Business Analyst and IT Intern

DCU Engage Award

By participating in DCU Access to the Workplace, you are also completing one out of three core elements of the DCU Silver Engage Award. To find out more, click here

Benefits for participating employers
  • Engage with talented students from the DCU Access programme
  • Opportunity to build on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy
  • Adds to diversity and inclusion in the workplace
  • Provides companies with highly-motivated students who have completed a Workplace Readiness Programme
  • Enables companies to develop and deepen relationships with DCU and the DCU community
  • Opportunity to give team members a new line management or mentoring responsibility
  • Brings new thinking and perspectives to the workplace
  • Help with immediate company workload
Employer requirements and eligibility

The DCU Access to the Workplace philanthropic support programme is open to organisations who support the DCU Access Scholarship Programme. Companies who wish to participate must also be:

  • Willing to employ a student for a minimum of 4 weeks and maximum of 12 weeks during May – August 2022
  • Willing to provide at least 30 hours per week at a minimum rate of €10.50 per hour (in line with the National Minimum Wage)
  • Willing to agree to the terms listed in the DCU Access to the Workplace Employer Charter, which will be provided by the DCU Educational Trust team
  • December 2021 - AttW launch event
  • February 2022 - employers submit Employer Requirements Form
  • February - March 2022 - mandatory student Work Readiness Programme
  • March - April 2022 - matching process takes place
  • May/June 2022 - internships commence (minimum 4 weeks and maximum 12 weeks)

Check out what previous students have gotten up to during their internship

A&L Goodbody


AIG Europe ltd


Allied Irish Banks plc

Alltech Bioscience Centre

Aon Ireland


Ark Life

Arthur Cox

B.C. McGettigan Limited

Bank of Ireland

Bonnington Hotel

Britvic International and Ireland

BT Ireland

CAE Parc Aviation

Carne Global Financial Services


Cityjet ltd

Codex Office Solutions

Colgate Palmolive

Collen Construction

County Monaghan Fund

CRH plc






Elgin Energy



Fidelity Investments Ireland

Fingal County Council


Gaelite Signs ltd

General Paints Group

Highfield Hospital Group


Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard

Irish Life Group ltd

Jacobs Engineering

Jones Engineering

Kennedy Wilson Europe


LIDL (Ireland) ltd

Maples Group

Marks and Spencer Ireland

Mason Hayes & Curran

MasterCard Ireland


Matthews Coach Hire ltd

McGarrell Reilly Group

McKeon Group



Mondelez Ireland ltd

MSD Ireland

MUFG Investor Services

National Recruitment Federation

National Standards Authority of Ireland

National Treasury Management Agency



Ornua Foods

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)

Permanent TSB


Ulster Bank Ireland ltd


Vodafone Ireland

William Fry Solicitors

Willis Towers Watson

Zurich Europe/EMEA