Interns: Slave Labor or Valuable Experience?

from New Voices (national Jewish student magazine):

Slave Labor or Valuable Experience?

Sometimes, it’s for free. Other times, it’s for college credit. On rare occasions, for pay. Some call it slave labor, while others call it a lucky break.

It’s no question that internships are becoming an easier catch for college graduates than entry-level positions. On occasion, the smooth transition from internship to entry-level job becomes a reality. For others, each internship is a stepping-stone to hopefully landing a job. But since employers have seen the rising trend of people wanting to work even for free to gain experience, a new question has been raised: Are businesses taking advantage of their interns?

… In light of new rules regarding internships, organizations are being forced to take a stronger glance at their current programs. New Voices asked several interns and their supervisors at a variety of Jewish organizations how these rules have affected them. Though some of the organizations contacted chose not to comment or were unaware of the new push to follow these internship rules, all of the organizations insisted that their programs will significantly help the intern after he or she has completed the program, regardless of whether the intern is paid or unpaid.

image: Collegiate Leadership Internship Program 2010 orientation