Armed with hands-on experience of the world of retail, nearly 160 Kuwaiti high school and university students are celebrating their graduation from retail franchise operator Alshaya's popular Summer Internship programme.
Run in partnership with Kuwait's Manpower and Government Restructuring Programme (MGRP), the Internship gave the Kuwaiti students the chance to work in one of Alshaya's stores, cafes or restaurants for a month, offering a valuable hands-on learning and development experience for students who want to explore a career in retail.
During their four weeks at the stores, interns were given the opportunity to discover the work culture, take on responsibilities, get invaluable work experience and benefit from training and development received.
Speaking at the graduation ceremony at MGRP's head office this week, Mr Tareq Alkandari, Head of the MGRP's Students Summer Programme, said Alshaya's ongoing support for the programme had given students better insight into their future plans and careers.
"It's important that graduates not only have strong academic knowledge, but have practical workplace skills as well. The Summer Internship instils a sense of responsibility and allows our interns to apply theoretical and academic concepts working with experienced operators in Alshaya stores," said Mr Alkandari.
Andrew Stotter-Brooks, Regional Learning and Development Manager at Alshaya, said the company's focus on youth development, creating opportunities and nationalisation was an important part of its broader corporate responsibility programme. "At Alshaya, we are strongly committed to recruit and develop an amazing Kuwaiti workforce in the country. The Summer Internship is an integral part of the company's commitment to providing career opportunities and jobs in the retail industry for Kuwaiti nationals."
During their internship, students worked with some of the 80 international brands operated by Alshaya, including Starbucks, H&M, Mothercare, Debenhams, American Eagle Outfitters, Bath & Body Works, Jack Wills and KidZania. They were introduced to the essentials of successfully running and managing store operations and received coaching in sales, promotions, customer service, merchandising and stock management.