Meet the 2015 Interns – Richard Adams

Following the success of last year’s internships, the Environment Team have taken on two more interns to work on various projects with us this summer. It’s great having some new faces in the office, so we wanted to take the opportunity to introduce them to readers of our blog so you can find out a bit more about what they’ve been working on! First up is our Travel Carbon Intern, Richard:

Richard Adams

Name: Richard Adams
Where are you from?: I’m from Burton-on-Trent in Staffordshire, England.
Internship Title: Travel Carbon Intern
Degree and year of study: I’ve just finished my second year studying Geography.

Give a brief snapshot of your role:
My job is to take the data acquired from various sources through which the university books its business travel arrangements and use it to extrapolate a CO2 estimate from it. I am also using the staff and student survey data to estimate the emissions associated with commuting to/from the university and finally looking at how the current systems for gathering this data can be improved to make future estimates more accurate and streamlined.

What attracted you to this internship with the Environment Team?
I wanted to gain experience working within the environmental sector and doing real-world work, building on what I have studied in my first 2 years here.

What have you learnt/what skills have you acquired so far from the internship?
I have learnt a lot of Excel and data skills which will be very useful in the future, but mostly the experience of working in an office environment with meetings/reports/suppliers has given me lots of skills required for working in professional ‘real-world’ environments.

How does this internship fit into your future career plans?
I would like to work in the environmental/sustainability sector and this internship has given me experience working within a team focused on environmental work and hopefully will be valuable in getting future work in the sector.

Share one tip for sustainable living that you wish more students would adopt: Try and buy local produce that is in season. It (usually) has less packaging, has travelled less miles to get here and you’re also supporting the local economy.


Click here to meet our EcoCampus Intern, Eloise, and check out the projects last year’s interns (Dominyka, Daihachi, and Elena) worked on last summer!

Intern with the Environment Team!

screen-shot-2014-07-08-at-19-05-55.pngInterested in pursuing a career in the environmental sector? Looking for a way to boost your CV?

The Environment Team are taking on two student interns this summer, and you could be one of them!

The two positions available are our Ecocampus Internship, and our Travel Carbon Footprint Internship. Both will run from Monday 1st June until Friday 10th July (6 weeks), and offer challenging, yet valuable experience of graduate-level work. As well as this, each intern will receive financial support through remuneration, university accommodation (where available), an induction and introduction to the Estates department, and feedback on their performance for future development.

Some case studies written by previous interns are available to view as part of our “Meet the Interns” series – Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.


How to apply

The internships are open to registered 2nd and 3rd year University of St Andrews undergraduates (or 3rd and 4th years on five year degrees). Each eligible applicant may apply for up to three internships within the St Andrews Summer Internship Scheme but may accept only one.

Hand in 3 copies of your CV and 3 copies of your covering letter for each internship you are applying for to the Careers Centre Reception no later than 5pm on Friday 27th February.

Please read this important advice about the application process. If you have any difficulties accessing the internship descriptions please email


Good luck!

Meet the Interns Part 3: Elena Skyfta

It seems like only yesterday we were welcoming our interns into the office, but now their internships are complete and they are free to enjoy the last few weeks of summer!

All three of our summer interns did a fantastic job on their respective projects, and the work they completed was of an outstanding quality. We’re going to miss having them around, but wish them all the best of luck for the upcoming academic year, and hope they’ll pop back to say hello every now and again.

So, without further ado, I have the pleasure of presenting our final intern: Elena Skyfta!


Name: Elena Skyfta
Where are you from?:
Athens, Greece
Internship Title:
Web Design Intern
Degree and year of study:
Biochemistry (entering 4th year)

Give a brief snapshot of your role:
My role was to restructure the web pages of the University of St Andrews Environment Team to make it more user friendly, and bring all the information up to date.

What attracted you to this internship with the Environment Team?
It was a great opportunity for me to further improve my web design skills whilst learning about all the environmental projects that the University runs. I believe that by improving the Environment Team’s website, more students and staff will be able to find ways to lead a more sustainable lifestyle.

What have you learned/what skills have you acquired?
I have gained a lot from this internship. My organisation skills were greatly improved since it was very challenging to organise all the information included in the website in the most user-friendly way. Moreover, my team-working skills were key for this internship as I had to collect invaluable information for the website from a number of people who specialise in various fields.

How does this internship fit into your future career plans?
This internship helped me improve my IT skills which is going to be a great asset in pursuing my future career in bioinformatics.

Share one tip for sustainable living that you wish more students would adopt:
I hope that more students will minimise their food waste by changing small things in their lifestyle, like planning their meals ahead of time.

You can check out our redesigned website at

Meet the Interns Part 2: Daihachi Yagi

Continuing our “Meet the Interns” series, this week we’d like to introduce you to Daihachi Yagi!


Name: Daihachi Yagi
Where are you from?: New York, USA
Internship Title: Web Design Discovery Intern
Degree and year of study: Sustainable Development (entering 3rd year)

Give a brief snapshot of your role:
My primary task for this internship was to assist Estates and the Environment Team in re-evaluating the digital content on the Estates and Environment Team webpages. Much of what I did involved interviewing staff and students.

What attracted you to this internship with the Environment Team?
I was interested in seeing what kind of experience I would have working for the University over the summer.

What have you learned/what skills have you acquired?
During this internship I was able to learn some key do’s and don’ts of website design and content management. Additionally, the interviews with stakeholders improved my communication skills.

How does this internship fit into your future career plans?
This is the first job that relates to what I have been studying for the past 2 years. Hopefully this will open new doors in the Environment/SD sector for me in the future.

Share one tip for sustainable living that you wish more students would adopt:
Reduce meat consumption. You can save money and shrink your carbon footprint!

Meet The Interns: Dominyka Urbonaite

This summer the Environment Team has been a hub of activity as we welcomed three student interns to the team to work on various projects.

We’d like to introduce them one by one so you can find out more about them, the important work they’ve been doing, and how the internships have helped them with their future career goals. It’s been great having some new faces in the office and we’ve really valued all their fresh ideas and suggestions for how we can take their projects to the next level!

So, without further ado, meet Dominyka!

DSCN5156-001 - Copy (2)Name: Dominyka Urbonaite
Where are you from? : Lithuania
Job Title: St Andrews Sustainability Award Intern
Degree and year of study: I am studying Sustainable Development and I am going to my 4th year.

Give a brief snapshot of your role:
The project I am working on is a new environmental accreditation and awards scheme called St Andrews Sustainability Awards. As part of this new scheme departments and units within university will have to complete a number of practical eco-friendly actions within their office in order to achieve an award: bronze, silver or gold. During my internship I was researching similar schemes at other universities and developing a set of environmental criteria for departments to complete.

What attracted you to this internship with the Environment Team?
I am interested in the sustainability in the institutions and working on a new programme aimed at making workplace more sustainable seemed as a brilliant opportunity.

What have you learned/what skills have you acquired?
Report writing and talking with various stakeholders was a very useful part of internship. I learned more about how the environment team operates within an academic institution and different stakeholders involved in creating a more sustainable workplace. In addition, I got to know more about areas and issues preventing from choosing the most sustainable way such as time, money and other more complex issues.

How does this internship fit into your future career plans?
I am interested in working in sustainability within institutions in the future so the experience I obtained from this internship directly relates to my future career plans.

Share one tip for sustainable living that you wish more students would adopt:
Reduce paper waste, print less lecture slides, handouts or readings and instead read on the computer or laptop. Most of all share this with a friend.

Look out for future posts introducing our other summer interns coming soon!