Damn. And just when LGM was thinking about offering an unpaid internship:
With job openings scarce for young people, the number of unpaid internships has climbed in recent years, leading federal and state regulators to worry that more employers are illegally using such internships for free labor.
Convinced that many unpaid internships violate minimum wage laws, officials in Oregon, California and other states have begun investigations and fined employers. Last year, M. Patricia Smith, then New York’s labor commissioner, ordered investigations into several firms’ internships. Now, as the federal Labor Department’s top law enforcement official, she and the wage and hour division are stepping up enforcement nationwide.
Good on ‘em. Let’s be clear; the unpaid internship effectively excludes a wide socioeconomic swath from gaining useful experience and making effective connections in business, government, and NGOs. For example, it was utterly impossible for me to even consider an unpaid internship as an undergraduate; paying the bills was difficult even with loans and full time work. Lots of young people lack significant parental support, and require minimum payment to have any hope of making ends meet. Moreover, even for those with support the “payment” for unpaid internships (connections, experience, and recommendations) often has no lasting effect on the intern’s job prospects. If you’ve ever wondered why DC NGOs and journalistic organizations are dominated by Ivy Leaguers, it ain’t just because they’re smart.