First career steps for Lambeth student at Vauxhall developers

27 August 2014

Written by: Anna Quigley

Better Lambeth - Focus on North Lambeth - Jobs and skills

Jasmine Zenalabdin from Tulse Hill has a lot to be proud of. She’s currently the first paid summer intern at the St James Group in Vauxhall and celebrating her successful A level results.

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At the start of this year Jasmine wasn’t aware of the regeneration taking place at Vauxhall and Nine Elms. Her school, St Martins-in-the-Field, was offered some work experience opportunities and Jasmine jumped at the chance even though she was studying hard for her exams.

Her placement, which took place at the project office on Albert Embankment during the Easter holidays, was a huge success. Jasmine quickly made a name for herself. During a practice interview on her first day she described herself as motivated, determined and positive – like the layers in a chocolate caramel biscuit!

By the end of the week Jasmine had been offered a paid summer internship as an administrative assistant. Now near the end of her eight weeks at St James Jasmine reflects on her experience:

“Working here has improved my communication skills and confidence and team work has been crucial. Everyone is good fun and it’s been great to get to know so many people and get lots of good advice.

“St James has tailored the work to my needs. They understand what I want to do in the future and have given me tasks that will be useful.

“I didn’t know about the regeneration at Nine Elms when I came here. Living here in 2020 will be amazing. I’ve seen the sketches of the buildings and they look great. I just want to live here now!”

Betzy Dinesen is the Employment and Future Opportunities Co-ordinator at St James Group and aims to provide relevant and interesting work placements for local young people. She says:

“We want to help people as much as we can to get a taste of the different career opportunities within the development industry. We look to our suppliers to help if people are interested in areas such as construction or architecture and it’s not just about ticking Section 106 boxes.”

Every person on a work placement is set tasks that cover all areas of the business and will also get a project brief, such as designing a lobby area, that they’ll be asked to present on. There were six work placements this summer at St James and Betzy is looking to recruit similar numbers during each holiday period.

As for Jasmine? She’s about to start a Business Administration degree at Roehampton University in September. She hopes to return to St James and describes working at the company like eating Neapolitan ice cream (her favourite food). It’s no surprise that her ultimate goal is to open a restaurant!

Want to know more about Nine Elms regeneration?


Interested in work experience?

In the first instance, you should talk to a teacher at your school, preferably a career’s teacher. They can contact us at