Shaun Miller — Change100 2017 intern, Leicestershire County Council

Shaun Miller, Change100 internShaun Miller is from Banff, a small fishing town on the north east coast of Scotland.

He graduated from the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen with a degree in Social Work, and is now studying for a Masters in Psychological Studies at the University of Glasgow. For his placement he worked for Leicestershire County Council.

'I had always been reluctant to disclose that I had a disability, as I was concerned that it would impact on me being able to secure an interview or get a job. But this was completely the opposite case with the Change100 programme and I’ve had such a positive experience working at Leicestershire County Council. My line manager and mentor have both been really supportive, as have all the other staff I have worked with.

‘I had always been reluctant to disclose that I had a non-visible disability, as I was concerned that it would impact on me being able to secure an interview or get a job — particularly within social work there is a lot of report writing, which I have struggled with, and I worried that employers would not want to take me on as I had additional support needs and might be slower than some of the other staff.

‘I heard about the Change100 programme after getting in touch with the University of Glasgow's disability and dyslexia service, and they advised that I apply as I had told them how realistically in other employments I don't think I would have had the confidence to disclose my disability to employers, and consequentially couldn't use any of my adaptive software to help me in the workplace, which wouldn't have been good.

‘But this was completely the opposite case as being part of the Change100 programme - I'm based down in Leicester with Leicestershire County Council, so it was a bit of a change of scenery from Scotland. I work Monday — Thursday in their children and families social work team, and Fridays I spend with my mentor in the equalities and diversities monitoring department, so it's been really beneficial to get a breadth of experience across two different areas of the council.

‘I have absolutely no regrets from the Change100 programme, I actually wouldn't change anything. My line manager and mentor have both been really supportive, as have all the other staff I have worked with. Thankfully I haven't had any issues throughout the duration of my placement, but if I had, I feel confident that I could discuss with either my immediate manager, or if the issue was more specific about my placement in general, my mentor at Koreo or from Leonard Cheshire Disability.'