I went on 12 interviews this past year, starting from January, 9 of which were in person. These interviews were for internships, part-time, and full-time roles. While I have yet to land a full-time job, I have learned a lot from how to treat and not treat people (read my previous article on such matters here http://bit.ly/2knVi1t). However, I embarked on an interview last week and, thanks to being in HR for a few years, knew something wasn’t right. The interviewer said that the compensation for the internship would be $9.00 per hour. When I remarked how New York State raised the minimum wage, she replied, “Oh, that’s only in restaurants.” Since she was nice, I put it off, however, I officially saw confirmation the following day that she lied, and, despite the “please let me know your questions and concerns” part at the end of the interview, ignored my question when I asked her to confirm the compensation she told me and only got back to me to say I didn’t get the position, not even having the respect nor decency to put my name on the email, merely stating, “Hi there…” like we’re already co-workers or friends. Obviously, this is not right.

Therefore, I’d like to warn all and any students and recent grads that I can not to get conned into accepting positions like this. Unless you’re interning for credits, never ever take an internship for free. This is an exploitation of labor. Never take an internship/job that pays below minimum wage claiming to be on the books. If you did/do and were/are in a pickle, know you have the legal grounds for a lawsuit (industries with tips not included). For further information, please see the New York State Department of Labor website:

https://www.labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/workprot/minwage.shtm

Take care, everyone!

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