MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors unanimously adopted a proposal from Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson to offer paid internships, rather than unpaid positions, to area students that want to learn the skills associated with working for a local legislative body.
“Student interns provide essential support to Milwaukee County Supervisors, and it’s time we recognize their contributions by paying them a fair wage. Any student who wants the training and education that comes with an internship at the Board of Supervisors deserves the opportunity to benefit from the experience of working in local government, not just those who can afford to take on an unpaid position. These two new paid internships will both be paid at least $15 an hour,” said Nicholson.
Chairwoman Nicholson’s proposal would abolish two vacant Office Assistant positions with the Board of Supervisors and create two paid Intern positions, a move that does not require any additional funds and better aligns the job duties with the position title.
The proposal to pay student interns supports the County’s mission of achieving racial equity, as unpaid internships are disproportionately available to individuals of higher socioeconomic status, and usually require that a student has access to outside financial support.
Nicholson’s proposal is a declaration that all worker deserve dignity and respect and reflects a growing national trend to end the exploitation of student workers.
The Board’s student intern program provides interns interested in public policy with a unique introduction to local government. Interns learn the inner workings of the legislative process and play an integral part in the daily functions of the Board.
Interested students can learn more and apply for open positions via the Board’s web site.