Friday, April 9, 2010
Insights and Opinions: An Open Letter On Paid Versus Unpaid Internships
For our Insights and Opinions section this morning, we are publishing an open letter from Robin D. Richards, Chairman and CEO of Internships.com -- and a successful Southern California serial entrepreneur and investor -- addressing the U.S. Department of Labor's crackdown on the use of unpaid interns at companies.
Paid vs. Unpaid. That is not the question.
Access to opportunity is for some almost an entitlement, but for the vast majority of Americans access to opportunity results from hard work and ingenuity.
The harder you work, the more ingenious you are, the luckier you get. The view that the government needs to regulate and protect our college students from the possibility of corporations seeking to take unfair advantage, I believe, is based on good intentions. However, in this case these intentions may be misplaced.
The American college student is sufficiently sophisticated, strategic and ambitious. Upward mobility is a uniquely American ideal. Anything is possible with education, preparation, hard work, ambition and access.
This issue of paid vs. unpaid is not an issue of fairness as some want you to believe, it is an issue of choice and free will. (More...)