When your last resort for working, whether it be for experience or just for sanity, is to accept an unpaid internship, what are you really getting yourself in for?

Anything, everything, and nothing all at once.  That's what you get.  And what do you expect?  You're working for free, which inherently implies that your experience so far is worth nothing, or at least less than what the employer believes they are giving you in return, which in my case amounts to the same thing.

I work for nothing, yet I diligently sit on the floor of my employer's apartment organizing his CDs.  I work for nothing, and get papers thrown at me without a please or thank you.  I work for nothing, and I have yet to get the one thing I was promised in return for working for free.  Experience. 

I am working at UNNAMED, an entertainment PR firm where I was hoping to break the cycle of needing entertainment experience to break into the industry.  I want to break into this so badly that I thought 4 months of unpaid work would be worth it.  But so far I have yet to see any entertainment clients, let alone anyone close to a celebrity. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not in it for the celebrities.  Not just them anyway.  I am good at what I do, I just want to do it in an industry that fascinates me and inspires me to go beyond "good at what I do".  I spend everyday on gossip sites, watching tv, movies, reading books, watching the news.  That's just what interests me, and if I were given the chance to do what I do in one of those industries, I would be able to go beyond "good at what I do" and "thanks for the paycheck", over to: "I love what I do and never thought I would get better at what I do", and, "Wow, I get paid to do this too!"

That's all I'm asking for... and I was willing to work for free to get there, but now I think I'm starting to realize that unless a company is invested in you, they'll just take what they can get while they've got it.

Welcome to the real world.

5/4/2010 01:25:23 am

I understand. I've been at an internship for four months now just hoping that one day I'll actually get work that MEANS something to what I want to do with my life. But it hasn't yet. I'm at my wits end with it because I'm wasting time and losing money (I normally work during those hours) and it's awful.

What I'm realizing is that MAYBE it's not worth it, and there's got to be experience somewhere else.


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    Maggie Stewart is the dramatic, cynical, slightly more ballsy, and slightly less real alter-ego of a girl just trying to make something of herself in Hollywood - said girl intends to hold nothing back, which is where Maggie comes in... this is real life.

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    March 2010


    Unpaid Internship

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