UPDATE ON OUR INTERNSHIP PETITION
Update on our internship petition
Thanks to everyone who signed and shared our change.org petition asking the Inquirer to reinstate its intern program. Several of you commented that you wouldn’t be here today, if it weren’t for your internship.
In response to the petition, we heard from two area journalism professors dismayed about the cancellation of our program, noting that internships for their students “do not cost you a dime,” either because they are for college credit or endowed by the school.
“Every single other publication we work with had virtual internships,” one professor wrote. “I do not understand why the Inquirer shut their program down.”
Here’s the company’s response to our petition:
To Whom It May Concern:
I have received the Change.org petition “Reinstate Internships”. We value internships and have a commitment to continuing to
provide these opportunities. Currently we have 13 interns in the organization. In addition, we have committed to hosting the Acel Moore Workshop to create talent pipelines for high school students, in particular for students of color.
We share the sentiments expressed in the petition and will continue to offer internships on an as-needed and rolling basis, subject to our goals of providing a high quality experience for the interns and contribution to operational needs of our business.
Senior vice president, People & Culture
Some of the “internships” referenced above were created only after the Guild filed and settled a grievance against our sports department, which had hired college students
to do part-time work in violation of our contract. The company had no intention of creating that intern program.
While publisher Lisa Hughes repeatedly says, “we’re a business” and it’s not our responsibility to train interns, four other news organizations — Gannett, the LA Times, the Washington Post and the Dallas Morning News — have all expanded their intern programs this year to “strengthen the pipeline” particularly for journalists of color. You can learn more about their efforts from this Feb. 25, 2022, National Press Club program, “As newsrooms diversify, what’s changing and what’s challenging?”
As a public benefit corporation associated with the Lenfest Foundation and purportedly committed to DEI, we should be leading the way on training and recruiting, not trailing the crowd.
The Guild Executive Board