Shannon Ryan

The graduate scheme has enabled me to develop a huge range of skills that will be transferable across KCC and beyond.

Age: 26

University: Queen’s University Belfast - Geography (BSc)

I am currently on my third placement within the Strategy, Policy, Relationships and Corporate Assurance team. I am supporting the development and approval of KCC’s first Strategic delivery plan – a whole-council business plan, focused on the most significant activity for the council.

During my time in this placement I will continue to develop my skills in project management, building on experience gained in my previous placements, putting to use the theory and knowledge gained from completing my Association of Project Managers qualification earlier this year.

In the early stages of the plan development, I have been heavily involved in engaging with stakeholders on the new approach to business planning, including senior officers, elected members, business plan leads and many other colleagues from across the organisation, to ensure delivery runs as smoothly as possible.

As the project develops, I will continue to take a lead role in data analysis, report writing, document drafting and the design and delivery of the final Strategic Delivery Plan.

Why I applied for the Kent Graduate Programme management stream

I applied for the Kent Graduate Programme as I understood that working in local government would provide an opportunity to professionally and personally invest in, and give back to local communities. I am passionate about community issues and I believe it is the role of local government to recognise both the limitations and potential of an area and work for, and more importantly with, a community to help them to positively advance.

I knew local government would present a fast paced working environment, ever evolving and restructuring to be able to address issues presented by external factors. This attracted me as I was looking for a career which could maintain my interest, flexibility and ability to learn over an extended period of time.

As well as this, KCC is committed to employee professional development and professional growth, something else which was important to me when applying to work in an organisation. Graduates are highly valued in KCC and the work we do is on real projects with real impacts, working with highly respected and experienced colleagues and partners. I believe that success and change are built upon a willing and pro-active approach to collaborative working, and this ethic is fostered throughout KCC.

With this comes an appealing environment which provides space for innovative thinking and openness to new ways of working, in order to meet demands of an increasingly pressured sector. My university education focused on community issues such as place identity, public space, heritage and regeneration, and I saw this scheme as an opportunity to be able to take my knowledge gained in education and research and apply them in practice through working on and developing local government projects and initiatives.

Current Placement

Strategy, Policy, Relationships and Corporate Assurance, ST

You should apply if...

  • you are passionate about working for the community and committed to creating positive change for Kent.
  • you are open to experiencing and working in a vast range of departments  and projects.
  • you want to work for a Council that respects and encourages the professional and personal development of its employees.
  • you are a person willing to learn and get involved, the more you put in, the more you will get out of this scheme.