Success Stories

Success Stories

Returner Profile – Sheila Roussel

At AAI, we recently reached out to our intern alumni to find anyone who had used one of our placements to get back to work or start a new professional journey, after a career break, and who could be considered a ‘Returner’.

Here’s Sheila’s story.

Background – My desire to design and make jewellery led me to leave my community development job to study full-time and build a portfolio. I graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in 2014 with BDes Hons First Class in Jewellery and Metalwork Design. I was awarded the F & A Bradshaw bursary, and travelled to Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina in 2014 to further my learning and development.


Your Returnship – I actually had the opportunity to do two placements through AAI. The first was with ZD Jewellery Design 2015, followed by my time at Hour Image Gallery in 2016. 

Overall these were both great experiences and gave me an insight into running a small workshop and retail space, as well as the dedication, effort, organisation and creative talent needed to make a business successful.

I’m now self-employed/freelance, and run where I sell my work. I’m also now training others to make jewellery, and am not only still in touch with my employer from ZD Jewellery, but have been recently invited back to help with her workload. 

Both ZD Jewellery Design and Hour Image Gallery have my work for sale now.

How did Adopt an Intern help me? – The positions through AAI really helped to build my confidence in my new career. Not only did the internships give me access to the practical side of these businesses, which was invaluable, but also gave me access to a network of industry professionals and customers that I would have found difficult to access without the positions.

Because both placements were paid, it meant I could develop my new career, gain the practical skills, and meet the right people, without the pursuit of my passion meaning a massive monetary break.

You can find out more about Sheila’s work at her website and follow her on facebook.

The term ‘Returnship’ is trademarked by Goldman Sachs


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