Unpaid Internships- The Institution of Exploitation

When holidays start, or a student has a lot of leisure time, they think of doing internships to gain experience.

More than half of the students do internships to earn money even if the amount is small- they want to fulfill their short-term goals from their hard-earned money.

When they venture out to seek internships, there are a plethora of opportunities available, but to their surprise- most of them are unpaid.

A few take up unpaid internships to familiarize themselves with the work atmosphere and a few don’t take up the unpaid internship because they believe that with experience, their work should be paid for and respected.

Every work should be paid. Nobody should be exploited in the name of providing experience and laying out a workspace for them.

 

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Why should you pay for your intern?

Asking someone to put in their efforts for work should always be paid in monetary means because it is the right thing to do.

When the intern is being paid, they take their tasks seriously and it makes them accountable for their work. The candidature for your internship increases because applicants earnestly fill out the application form. If they are selected, they try to give their best and prove their passion for work. 

The amount might be minimal for the internship provider, but for the intern, it might be their first pay check, which boosts their confidence and makes them believe in themselves.  

Attracting interns saying that you will be giving them a great learning opportunity, whereas in reality you just benefit your company from their free work. It is exploiting someone’s talent and hard work.

 

When is it okay to offer an unpaid internship? 

If you are an NGO because the primary objective is to increase social welfare, and, hence, it is okay for NGOs to roll out unpaid internships. 

If you are a well-established organization and providing an excellent learning opportunity that is going to help the intern in their future. 

Internships should always be paid (barring the above exceptions) because taking advantage of someone’s vulnerability and not paying for their work is exploitation. 

 

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