Condé Nast has completely ended its fashion internship program. Condé Nast is the parent company of Allure, Glamour, W Magazine and over 15 other digital media companies. The company maintained an internship program for years, but lawsuits were filed against the company for incorrect payment to interns. As a result, Condé Nast has stopped taking interns. I believe the company took the easy way out. Why not adjust the program to fulfill the requirements for unpaid internship programs?
My roommate, Meredith Buckbee, is a junior fashion merchandising major at Kent State and loved her internship at W Magazine. “I find it disappointing that Condé Nast had to end its internship program. As a former intern, I was able to experience hands-on work that really helped me decide where I wanted to focus my career when I graduate, and it exposed me to the industry in a way that a classroom alone cannot. Also, I feel that the internship has prepared me for when I graduate to confidently apply for entry-level jobs in the fashion magazine industry.”
Everyone says an internship gives you real-world experience you need to land an awesome. I don’t know about you, but it sounds like Meredith got phenomenal experience. If I had the opportunity to intern at such a well-known company, like W, I would be more than willing to be an unpaid intern.
Employees of companies of magazines, along with interns, receive free fashion items from companies its publication works with. Employees and interns never expect the gifts, but who doesn’t love a free piece of jewelry every now and then? It might be jewelry an intern would never have the money to personally buy, so it’s very special for them to receive it as a gift.
When applying for the internship, applicants know the position is unpaid. You know what you’re signing up for. Also, if the intern did not like the position, her or she could quit at anytime. If it’s unpaid, what are you really losing? The intern could also contact the mentor and ask for parts of the position to be adjusted. Even though there’s a chance nothing will be changed, it’s worth a shot. A mentor is there to guide you and can help you get the learning experience you deserve.
Hearst Magazine and Fox Searchlight Pictures have been sued in the past, as well, for their internship programs. Their solution was not to end their internship. Spokespeople from Condé did state that ending the internship program may be too extreme, but proceeded to end the program. As Meredith said previously, the internship program gives you the confidence you need. Many individuals will not longer have that “in” they need to get a job at a company of Condé Nast.
Believe it or not, there is a positive to the ending of the program for people other than Condé Nast. The company will need to fill the positions that interns used to hold. Therefore, there are many more entry-level positions for college students. Since there are many more entry-level positions available, then maybe it’s not as big of a deal that the students no longer have the “in” from the internship program.
What do you think of Condé Nast ending its internship program?