It’s graduation season, and the end of the academic year means thousands of college students and grads are headed off to their summer internships. Just in time for their departure, David Dennis wrote a piece for The Guardian exhorting the journalism industry to end its reliance on the unpaid intern industry, which Dennis says prevents low and middle-class students from ever achieving media careers, thereby disenfranchising wide swaths of the population.
At the same time, ProPublica has launched Investigating Internships, a crowd funding effort to help pay the salary of an intern who will, in turn, use their time there to “tell the stories of the millions of interns across the U.S.”
We plan to send our intern to college campuses across the country, collecting intern stories in a visual way (think video, animation, graphics). We will be closely involved from ProPublica HQ, training our intern in multimedia, reporting and editing skills while they’re on the road.
These stories are a vital part of this investigation. While our reporters will focus on deep dive watchdog reporting, our intern will help highlight the human side of the issue in a visual, creative way.
However, if we don’t raise the money to cover the salary, travel and production costs, we won’t be able to hire someone.
So if you’re moved by Dennis’s arguments, you can do your part by helping at least one journalism intern get paid this summer.
— Caroline O'Donovan