“Exploitation is not a vocation.”
An internship is a professional learning experience that offers meaningful and practical work related to a student’s field of study or career interest. It is offered by an organization for a limited period of time. The position of a student or trainee is known as an intern. An internship can be paid or unpaid depending upon the experience of a person.
Unpaid internships have become a trend in India and many other countries as well, seeking youngsters to work without getting paid for the work.
Young freshers lack professional work experience and therefore engage themselves in internships that are not paid. They are often driven by the will to learn practically during internships.
Why an Unpaid Internship?
Organizational, Employer, and Intern Benefits:
The organization and the employers of interns also benefit from the hard work of the interns at low to no additional cost.
Employers often convert interns to full-time employees after the internship period ends, which reduces or eliminates any training-related costs.
Employees who started working as interns are more likely to stick with the organization for a long time. Young interns bring fresh, new, and creative ideas to the workplace.
For the young, internships provide an opportunity to improve their skills and gain work experience, along with the additional benefits of LORs and certificates.
Is it exploitative or worth contributing to?
Time is the most precious gem a human has and it is always advisable to invest our time in things that provide us with something valuable in return.
An intern gets to learn from his employers, but is that enough? After investing lots of hard work and time into an assignment, it becomes important to get appreciated and rewarded.
Monetary benefits are one such reward that can boost an intern’s productivity. Being freshers, first pay always excites the interns. Ultimately, this benefits not just the intern but the growth of the company as a whole.
Internships are the first insight or exposure of an intern to the real world. A lot of things other than skills from the workplace shape the view of an intern towards life.
Therefore, it becomes important to tackle the interns with delicacy.
Checking the Loophole:
India is a nation that works hard. That is the greatest explanation for our astronomically large population and the oversaturation of practically every business. Therefore, for getting something done in minimal time, it publicizes its need for interns. And once one is there, it makes no sense to pay them because if one declines, they will have someone ready to do it for free.
There have been numerous occasions when protests about the unpaid culture sparked outrage.
In 2021, tweets flashed about the exploitation due to unpaid culture.
After multiple protests, the era of unpaid internships hasn’t ended but it must. It exhausts a person mentally with no recognition for their work and no financial benefits.Money is necessary for survival, regardless of how passionate one is. It drives back motivation to work when a person is mentally done.
And how is it even justified to not get paid for something one has worked very hard for and, most importantly, given their precious time to?
The fact that the poor are unable to pay for their bread makes it more unjustified. Even after putting in long hours at the internship, their only option is to forego a promising career and focus on survival. As for unpaid options, don’t give them the chance to do both things altogether.
The Indian youth is our future and what kind of future are we striving towards by cheating them out of their hard-earned money?