Return on Investment: How to Get the Most from Your Unpaid Internship
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

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There’s been a lot in recent news about unpaid internships, from lawsuits to laments. Some would argue that they are once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for young professionals and students, at no expense to companies, while others might say it’s unfair, free labor at the expense of impressionable minds desperate for a foot in the door.


But in many cases, an unpaid internship can provide invaluable experience that can trump a stipend or paycheck and can boost the chances for advancement.

Nevertheless, whether paid or unpaid, you want to get the most out of your experience. Brazen Careerist offers a checklist to ensure you do just that. Don’t leave the internship without getting the following return on your time investment:

  • A reference letter
  • A summary of your accomplishments
  • A network of contacts
  • An overall evaluation

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Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood is associate managing editor at Black Enterprise, managing content across core areas of Money, Career, Small Business and Technology. She is also a featured blogger with My Two Cents, providing insights on branding, millennial career development, employment trends and leadership. She was previously a content producer and copy editor for Black Enterprise magazine, working across several editorial sections. The Hampton University graduate got her start in the newspaper industry, having worked for companies including The New York Times and Scripps Howard News Service. Her works and insights have appeared on The Huffington Post, MadameNoire, E!Online, Brazen Careerist, CBS News, and Arise TV.