What’s Wrong With Required Internships? Plenty

March 6, 2018

Matthew Hora, director of the Center for Research on College-Workforce Transitions, offers suggestions on how to improve mandatory internships.

From the Chronicle of Higher Education:

Given that 65 percent of employers want applicants with industry-specific work experience, and millions of students are struggling to pay for basic needs and the rising price of tuition, anything that would increase a college student’s job prospects is a good thing, right?

Well, no. As a researcher who studies college-workplace transitions, I’ve concluded that a senior administrator at a Wisconsin technical college had it right when she told me that "internships are the Wild West in higher education."

In many colleges, the landscape of internships is best characterized as ambiguous, unregulated, potentially exploitative, and — for many students — inaccessible.

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