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Unpaid vs. Paid Internships?

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So, I am beginning to apply for internships, and I was wondering what the difference between unpaid and paid internships in regards to environment and how effective they are on internships. Just give a general explanation, in those regards, of the differences between unpaid and paid internships.

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From which perspective? For the most part it depends on the business it is their decision to offer payment. There are various consideration beside cost that may determine whether internship at a given company is paid or or not. For example, in areas where cost-efficiency is paramount and turnover is accepted to be high, unpaid are probably more common. Or when the number of applicants vastly outstrips available positions. In others, where attracting and retaining personnel is seen as a competitive advantage, payments are more likely.

Even within a company there can be different divisions that do things differently.

 

Edit: since it is is posted in computer science I should add that I have no clue how tech (i.e. non biotech) companies operate.

Edited by CharonY

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I feel,the core question is whether or not the internship pays in other ways, such as through deep industry connections and networking, formation of strategic relationships, guaranteed offer of job upon graduation, institutional prestige, and other similar non-monetary rewards.

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So, I am beginning to apply for internships, and I was wondering what the difference between unpaid and paid internships in regards to environment and how effective they are on internships.

 

Well the main difference would be what you can afford to do. Me for example I live in the countryside so if I wanted to do an internship I would need to pay for accommodation which increases the cost for me. So I mostly just learn stuff online when I can. Now if your family lived near the unpaid internship and it was something you were really interested in then you might consider it. But it really depends on whether or not the family can afford it. Also I find that internships can kind of be an excuse for employers to pay shit money. They would just hire interns and get rid of them when they were done with them.

Edited by fiveworlds

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I feel,the core question is whether or not the internship pays in other ways, such as through deep industry connections and networking, formation of strategic relationships, guaranteed offer of job upon graduation, institutional prestige, and other similar non-monetary rewards.

 

That would be the wise thing to look out for. Especially things certain businesses are notorious for hiring unpaid (or minimally paid) interns solely as cheap interim workers. Obviously, these should be avoided.

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So, I am beginning to apply for internships, and I was wondering what the difference between unpaid and paid internships in regards to environment and how effective they are on internships. Just give a general explanation, in those regards, of the differences between unpaid and paid internships.

I have read that paid interns have a better chance at finding a job afterwards and that none paid internships often leave the interns at danger of being abused by the company's that decide to hire them. I have never signed up for any kind of internship though. That is just what I found through my research and most sources have said to go for the paid internship. For me though if I could learn something and get paid while I am doing it that would be a great deal. This is especially helpful if you never had a job before, as you could possibly put this down as job experience and write it up as he/she was your boss. So if they ask "Are you currently working" you put "Yes for this company as a paid intern".

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This is because it is assumed that companies that offer paid internship value interns more. However, it can differ from industry to industry and in some it is more about e.g. access to networks (as iNow mentioned).

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