BY SEAN MALINOWSKI
Internships are an integral part of today’s college experience. Having the opportunity to get your foot in the door of a business or organization of your choosing is a great way to get useful experience, as well as beneficial self-promotion.
For most students, internships are mandatory to graduate, there is no avoiding them. This is a difficult credit to complete though, having to travel off-campus during odd hours, and cramming it into your already chock full schedule of work, school and socialism. So you shouldn’t have to settle for doing it for free.
That being said, businesses should recognize this and offer more paid internships. Time is money, especially for a student. Having your pockets filled from a good day’s work should be a part of the workplace experience. Also, businesses should give interns professional roles and duties that are realistic for a beginner in that field. Interns shouldn’t be hired just to make coffee runs, they are there to test drive a career.
Of course, the main focus of an internship is to make sure individuals have the best learning opportunities that match their career interest. But, with an hourly wage, students would become even more engaged. Money talks.
In Ontario, unpaid internships are illegal unless they are a requirement of a college or university program, or if it offers specific professional training in a certain field (law, agriculture, dentistry).
Paid internships need to be more prevalent, readily available, and should be a post-secondary school norm. It’s a tough economic time to be throwing money at the future of the world, but the future has to start somewhere.