Work Related Learning – Professional Working Internship Abroad | Plymouth, England

Cultural Trip To Mount Edgcumbe Almond Vocational Link Students Plymouth UKIn April 2015, Almond Vocational Link hosted a group of 20 students from the State Institute for Wine and Food Services and Trade “A. Olivetti” based in Monza, Italy. Accompanying them were Pierina Pelliccioni (school’s head teacher), Filena Spadavecchia (teacher of English) and Valentino Buoncore (teacher of cookery).

The group’s stay was self-funded by the Olivetti school and the participants. The aim of this project was to equip the young learners with practical skills on an international level and to improve their chances of starting a successful carrier after leaving school. The participants had an opportunity to widen their horizons, practice English and learn more about the rich and varied culture of England. Their two week stay included English language training, work experience placement, cultural trips and social meetings.


Welcome Meeting Almond Vocational Link Plymouth UK Almond Vocational Link arranged for all the students to stay with host families on half board basis, the teachers were allocated in appropriate accommodation requested prior to arrival. We arranged an airport transfer to Plymouth with our trusted transport provider who made sure the group had a comfortable and a hassle-free journey. The students were welcomed by their host families and Almond Vocational representatives on arrival. They all received their travel passes and Student Handbooks with all the important information, emergency contacts and timetables.

My host family was really nice and welcoming. The house is also nice and clean. My host mum is a really good chef!

Alessandro B from Monza, Italy



Olivetti School Welcome visit Plymouth Almond Vocational LinkOn day one, we gathered at Almond Vocational Link’s office for an official welcome meeting with the company’s managing director – Mrs Janet Wonnacott. The students were officially welcomed in Plymouth and given useful tips on living in a foreign country, using public transport and working. Afterwards, the group was invited for a Tour of Plymouth and its historical Waterfront. The trip involved a visit to the Plymouth Hoe and Barbican, it highlighted the rich cultural and historical heritage of the city. We are very passionate about Plymouth and our staff always try to make the welcome tour as informative, interactive and exciting as possible. This group’s love for history and culture was a joy to see. Some loud “Awww’s” “Woow’s” could be heard as we approached the Smeaton’s Tower and the view across the Plymouth Sound unravelled in front of us. The welcome tour was followed by an extended lunch break in the City Centre where the students could browse in the shops and explore at their own pace. Afterwards the participants made their way back to the Almond Vocational Link HQ for their first English lesson



English Language Training Plymouth Language School Almond Vocational LinkAll the students signed up for our tailor made English Language course. They were divided into 2 groups of 10 and took part in an initial assessment to establish their level of English. The general English course focused on improving the student’s grammar, speaking, writing and listening abilities. The Olivetti school requested that we deliver a tailored course which focuses on improving the vocabulary within the hospitality and catering trade.  The group’s tutor used topics of interest like local tourism and British cuisine to keep the students motivated and engaged throughout the lesson. Both of our teachers – Gary and Natalia, received a very positive feedback from our Italian friends.

I really liked the language training. My teacher, was really kind. If there was something I didn’t understand, she told me again and all the lessons were really interesting

Federica from Monza,  Italy

My Language Training was very fun, useful and enjoyable. The teacher really knew how to push you to learn and the lessons were really involving. I feel more confident about my pronunciation.

Alessandro from Monza, Italy



As a part of the package, Almond Vocational Link provided all the participants with a work experience placement matched to their area of studies. On day 2, the participants were shown to their work placements and introduced to their supervisors. The student’s progress was monitored throughout the stay and they were all given valuable feedback by the work placement supervisors.

Work Experience in Catering Almond Vocational Link Plymouth UKThe students who undertook placements in catering had a great opportunity to work at some of Plymouth’s most popular eateries.  Their tasks involved food preparation and assisting the head chef and his team in ensuring smooth operation.

Work Experience Placement Catering Almond Vocational Link Plymouth UK

One of the participants undertook a work placement as a patisserie chef and she had an opportunity to work for one of Plymouth’s busiest and most popular bakeries. It gave her a chance to learn some new recipes and see how does a large UK bakery operate.

Those who study waitressing had a great chance to demonstrate their skills in local food outlets. They were able to improve their customer service skills in English.

I felt integrated into the team and I liked the restaurant.

I’m improving all of my cooking skills, like for example food preparation with cooking timing and recipes. I learnt a lot about Turkish Cuisine, I find it very particular. It’s awesome, I think!

Alessio, from Monza, Italy

Nicholas was a joy to have here. We was polite, friendly and immaculately dressed. His time keeping and attendance was excellent. We wish he could stay for longer, giving him more confidence with his English  and the ability to learn.

Plymouth Cafe Owner, work placement provider

Really happy to give foreign students opportunity to work in a kitchen and fast pace environment. Good attitude and approach. Carry on with the good work!

Plymouth Restaurant Head Chef, work placement provider

Christiano has fitted in well here. He stepped up to the challenge when we were suddenly left short staffed on a busy Saturday lunchtime. Should the opportunity arise for Christiano to work with us again, we would welcome his return.

Plymouth Restaurant Owner, work placement provider 

Nicolo has a bright future ahead of him, he  is just waiting for the right opportunity and he will grab it. He speaks good English, listen well and works very hard.

Plymouth Restaurant Head Chef, work placement provider

National Trust Property Almond Vocational Link Students Plymouth UKFive Italian participants were placed in a world famous National Trust property as room stewards and guide’s helpers. They were responsible for welcoming the guests and giving them directions. During the busy Easter period, our students took part in running the activities for visitors, this involved the Easter Egg hunt and operating various craft stands. Their input was greatly appreciated by the grounds manager and all the volunteers. Here are some comments from the students and their work placement supervisor:

I would definitely work again with this organisation, I loved my job!

Alessandro N

Gulia has worked hard to develop her understanding of the National Trust as a work place. She is a mature member of the group and has an enthusiastic approach  to all her work. She has asked lots of good questions to help her understand the tasks she was asked to do. Well done.

Grounds Manager, National Trust Property, work placement provider

Federica has been a very enthusiastic and positive member of the group. She has worked hard on her English Language Skills and used every opportunity to learn new things. Well done.

Grounds Manager, National Trust Property, work placement provider



Mount Edgcumbe Trip with Almond Vocational Link PlymouthDuring their stay, the group also took part in series of socio – cultural activities. Almond Vocational Link invited the students to a special Easter Language Cafe, during which we talked about British cuisine and enjoyed a great presentation prepared by our Latvian student- Ance and presented by Almond’s wonderful Valentina. There was lots of fun, laughter, biscuit munching, comparing experiences and even a game of Pictionary based on the vocabulary we learnt.

On Easter Sunday, Valentina took the group to Mount Edgcumbe for a cultural trip. The students enjoyed a nice walk across the countrypark and gardens and had a chance to enjoy some spectacular views during their lunch break.

On week 2, we invited our participants to the Tudor Rose Tea Rooms for a traditional Tea Party with delicious, homemade scones. It was an evening enjoyed by many during which we celebrated the Great British Culture.



Certificate Ceremony Plymouth UK Almond Vocational Link Italian Students

On Friday 10th April we presented all the participants with official Certificates of Attendance awarded to them for all the efforts put into language training and internships.

Almond Vocational Link also made all the necessary travel arrangements for the students airport transfer on Saturday 11th April.