The responses to this week’s Further Questions were a little sparse. I’m hoping that you will have some comments, dear readers, about your own experiences.
This week I asked people who hire librarians:
If you hire interns, do you pay them? Why or why not?
No, we don’t hire interns. We accept SLIS students on placement or for reference observation, but those are not paid because they are part of the requirements for a class or the degree. We also don’t get a lot out of those placements. The observations are just for a few hours. We are more likely to hire a SLIS student for a part time or temporary reference position. It can lead to job openings for a tenure-track position but it can also offer a great opportunity for getting academic library experience and seeing how our organization works. We have a part-time temporary reference position open right now to cover for librarians on leave: http://finance.loyno.edu/human-resources/staff-employment-opportunities.
– Laurie Phillips, Associate Dean for Technical Services, J. Edgar & Louise S. Monroe Library, Loyola University New Orleans
It’s my understanding that if interns are hired for no pay, the position is part of a course for school, college or graduate credit. Otherwise, there is a requirement that the position is paid.
We don’t hire or place interns in our public library.
– Kaye Grabbe, Director, Lake Forest (Public) Library, Lake Forest, IL.
Side note to fellow hiring managers: pay your interns. Not doing so is classist, because only the well-to-do can afford to work for free. And because race, ethnicity, gender identity, mental illness, physical ability, and sexual identity, among others, often correlates with class, internships are discriminatory along those lines as well. Also, not paying people to work devalues our professions by sending signals to other employers that our labor, time, and effort is not worth compensation.(reposted from https://hiringlibrarians.com/2014/01/31/further-questions-should-internships-go-under-employment-experience-or-in-a-separate-section/)-Jacob Berg, Director of Library Services, Trinity Washington University
Thank you as always to our contributors for their time and insight. If you’re someone who hires librarians and are interested in participating in this feature, please email me at hiringlibrariansATgmail.com.