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The Sustainable Intern Program is International Despite Being Launched in a Global Pandemic

The outbreak of the pandemic has caused unprecedented economic disruption with companies all over the world forced to shutdown and employees sent home.

Young people are now facing the brunt of what could be one of the toughest job markets in decades; unemployment is rising, the recruitment of new roles is falling and the global economy is set to experience the deepest recession since World War 11, according to the World Bank.

That’s the reasoning behind ImageNPay’s decision to launch its 2021 Sustainable Intern Program in Ecuador.

With the help of the UK Embassy, the fintech has partnered with the University of San Francisco Quito in South America to deliver a remote intern program.

The international intern program follows the success of the 2020 digital intern scheme, where the company took on graduates from all over the UK to work remotely.

“We wanted to use the learnings from the digitally and socially distanced pandemic intern program that was so successful in the UK last year to see if we could duplicate it for other countries and at the same time give students in far flung locations access to large corporations” said Elena Zenina – Chief Innovation Office at ImageNPay.

In 2021 the interns will be focussing on 5 key areas: Sustainability, Financial Education, Media & Creative Content, Innovation & New Technologies, and Loyalty in FinTech.  

“We encourage our interns to work across the groups horizontally which helps them to stay out of silos, a very common occurrence in the corporate workplace” added Elena.

“Our intern program centres around some of ImageNPay’s core values of financial inclusion, education, sustainability, innovation through exploration and diversity so running an intern program on the other side of the World during a pandemic where very few international corporations set up any intern programs whatsoever seemed a natural fit to us’ said Michael Donald, the CEO and Founder of ImageNpay.

“I know that at the end of the 8 weeks the students will have contributed to ideas, new innovations and engaged with a wide audience of influencers to help ImageNPay provide ongoing support to both the Galapagos and other BioDiversity projects in the region.”

The ImageNPay app – which is available on Apple Pay – is the world’s first payment system that enables users to personalise a virtual Mastercard with bespoke images that appear in their Apple Wallet.

The app, which aims to reduce the reliance on single use and unrecyclable plastics, has been making waves in the payment space and attracting the attention of global players.  

Scott Abrahams, Senior Vice President, Business Development and Fintech at Mastercard UK & Ireland said: “I am thrilled to be a mentor on the intern programme and developing the pipeline of future talent in the industry.”

There are more than 22 billion plastic payment cards worldwide, according to data published by Nilson, with around 7 billion being re-issued every year.  Most are made from unrecyclable PVC plastic.

One simple solution is to ditch plastic payment cards for digital alternatives, something offered by the ImageNPay app which allows users to pre-pay funds into a digital wallet, choose a payment image and then purchase goods by tapping their smartphone against payment terminals. 

Michael, a former Chief Commercial Officer of MBNA, added: “We all pay for goods and services, so why not make it fun and collaborative. It’s time to bring fun-tech into fintech!” 

ImageNPay was developed in conjunction with global payment solutions provider EPAM and is available in the Apple store or via The ImageNPay app is expected to launch on Android later this year.

Apple Pay is accepted in grocery stores, pharmacies, taxis, restaurants, coffee shops, retail stores, and many more places. Customers can also use Apple Pay on iPhone, iPad, and Mac to make faster and more convenient purchases in apps or on the web in Safari without having to create accounts or repeatedly type in shipping and billing information.

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