The Conversation recently published an article on obstacles to internships written by UW-Madison’s Matt Hora.
Hora is a research scientist with the School of Education’s Wisconsin Center for Education Research and the director of UW-Madison’s Center for College-Workforce Transitions. Additionally, he is an assistant professor of adult and higher education in the Department of Liberal Arts and Applied Studies.
According to Hora, many students who’ve turned down an internship had actually hoped to take one but could not. He explains that the inability to take on internships is problematic, as these positions serve as a signal that students are ready to enter the workforce and may lead to lower rates of unemployment and higher wages after graduation.
One of the most significant obstacles preventing students from participating in internships is the need to work paid jobs. 60 percent of students surveyed by Hora cited this as a reason for not being able to take an internship, as they are often responsible paying for housing, groceries, transportation, and rising tuition costs
Many students also report having too many classes to work an internship, which was especially true for students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines, where courses require laboratory time and tend to assign lots of homework.
Read more about the obstacles to internships here.