This blog is committed to demonstrate that unfair internships are exploitative in part because they are becoming unavoidable. It is no longer possible to say “It’s not exploitation because students are not forced to take an internship.”
Consider this (Who Will You be This Summer?, Lisa Belkin, New York Times, January 6, 2008):
“Internships are no longer optional, they’re required,” says Peter Vogt, author of “Career Wisdom for College Students” and an adviser to MonsterTrak.com, the student arm of the job-search Web site, which reports that 78 percent of students in college this year plan to complete one or more internships before entering the post-collegiate world.
It’s not enough to have internship experience to land a job, now it takes internship experience to get an internship:
Competition is further heightened because applicants are increasingly qualified. At Ketchum, a New York public relations company, more than 600 students applied for 16 positions last summer, with predictable results.
“This year, for the first time, every candidate selected for this summer’s program came to Ketchum with previous internship experience under their belt,” says Allison Slotnick, a spokeswoman.
This is why we need to go one step back and make these first on-the-job experience proper jobs and not unfair internships. At any rate, the job market needs new blood and students will get hired. We got to stop pitting students against each other in an unfair battle for the job market.