Interning Now a Permanent Way of Life

Here’s the plight of “The 23-Year-Old Intern,” as recounted by N.Y.U. Livewire: working for free, indefinitely, at Bust and The Onion. Putting in 15-30 hours a week at Old Navy. Extensive parental subsidies.

Times are particularly trying for those seeking to enter journalism, which has been “hit by the double whammy of economic crisis and the waning power of print”:

Only six in 10 bachelor degree recipients in media fields were employed full time six to eight months after graduation, according to the Grady Institute’s 2008 Annual Survey of Journalism and Mass Communication Graduates, compared with 70 percent in 2007.

This is also the first year that a sizable block of college graduate interns (in all fields) showed up in the National Association of College and Employers annual survey.

Any intern who has worked for free amid amid rampant layoffs knows the queasy feeling of being both a victim and part of the problem.

Coming soon: The 24-Year-Old Intern. Interning Now a Permanent Way of Life