Paid vs Nonpaid Internships

Posted on September 20th, 2012 by

While employers may like to hear of your willingness to do volunteer work, it turns out that they are not as impressed when they see your willingness to take an unpaid internship. In a recent nationwide survey done by NACE of over 45,000 college graduates, 60% of students who had a paid internship while in college were offered a job after graduation. This number is substantially higher than the 37% of nonpaid interns who were approached by an employer. In fact, only 1.3% more nonpaid interns were offered a job when to compared to their classmates who never held an internship. While the difference is drastic, NACE explains that paid interns are more likely than nonpaid interns to obtain relevant work experience, the sort of experience companies want their new employees to have.
            So, what do these statistics mean to Gustavus students in search of internships? Simply, be willing to put in the extra time and effort to find a paid internship. Even if an internship is not exactly what you’re looking for, don’t skip over it. Instead, consider the skills you might learn from the job and how they might apply to the line of work that truly interests you. Just as importantly, take time when filling out applications. Since landing a paid internship may have a huge impact of your future career path, it is not a time to cut corners. Lastly, if you want to start looking for internship opportunities, or need help with any part internship process, make an appointment to see Internship Director Vincent Thomas in the Center for Servant-Leadership. 


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