Must an Internship Be Paid?
If your organization is a for-profit business, we strongly encourage you to offer compensation. Some form of remuneration in an internship is greatly appreciated by the student and helps to create the demand for the position.
If your organization (for-profit or non-profit) is unable to offer a regular wage, consider helping the student with a stipend or internship-related expenses such as parking fees, mileage, meals, etc.
Unpaid student internships will not violate the U.S. Department of Labor's Fair Labor Standards Act if it is a training program which meets the following criteria:
1) The training should be similar to that given in an educational environment;
2) the experience is for the benefit of the intern/student;
3) students do not displace regular employees and works under close supervision of existing staff;
4) the site sponsor provides the training and receives no immediate advantage from the activities of
5) students are not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the training period;
6) the site sponsor and student understand that the student is not entitled to wages for the time spent in training.
For more information about Fact Sheet #71, visit: