According to MSNBC’s Ned Resnikoff, systematic usage of paid internships disproportionately shuts out working-class and lower-middle-class writers from journalism careers. Do you agree?
This is a definite issue for young journalists — though not across the board. Many newspapers, for example, offer paid internships, and when I started in the industry, I was lucky enough to get a temporary job that was paid. (Magazines, traditionally, are less likely to offer paid internships.) So I definitely feel for journalists struggling to make a career out of this. Good on The Ed Show for raising the issue, though the next question is, what are NBC’s own practices on the matter? — Ernie @ SFB
I absolutely and completely agree with this. While I was lucky enough to get paid internships, they weren’t with the “names” that make an impression on your resume outside of say, Texas. Those who are wealthy enough to take an unpaid internship with Conde Nast are more likely to get hired than the person who did a paid internship with their local newspaper even though you have more opportunites to do actual writing/reporting at your local newspaper than at Conde Nast. But this could be mainly a problem in large cities such as D.C. and NYC where names are very important. -BdM