For students, internships are often considered the best way to bolster a résumé beyond their education and miscellaneous part-time jobs.
For students, internships are often considered the best way to bolster a résumé beyond their education and miscellaneous part-time jobs. The best and most helpful internships are ones that require time and dedication and simulate what the workplace will look like when it’s finally time to brave the world.
But along with this time should come pay.
Too often, these internships that force students to alter their schedules and restructure their lives are administered without pay. Approximately 43% of internships at for-profit companies are unpaid, according to The Washington Post.
At Loyola, multiple majors require an internship or some sort of engaged learning in order to graduate. The Phoenix Editorial Board recognizes the importance of on-site, practical experience before people fully commit to their careers, but simply believes the companies and organizations admitting students into their ranks should be compensating the work they are doing.
The reasons offered for the lack of pay vary from invaluable experience, future references and a getting-your-foot-in-the-door mentality. All three of these are achieved whether pay is involved or not, but it feels unjust when interns are expected to turn out work comparable to that of their paid colleagues, without a fraction of the same respect.
People who participate in unpaid internships receive an average of 0.84 job offers post-grad, compared to an average of 1.25 for paid interns, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers.
Regardless of whether or not they are paid internships, the benefits of interning are clear. However, the lack of paid internships reserves these opportunities for individuals who have the means to dedicate time to a job where they won’t make any money.
Some students rely on jobs outside of college and their career path in order to support their educational endeavors. For those not in a financial position that would allow for a commitment of time and effort without a salary in return, the allure and experience of an internship they may be qualified for becomes immediately unattainable.
Featured image by Holden Green