Survey: Paid Interns More Likely To Land Jobs

Sioux Falls ad agency hosts "Meet, Greet & Repeat" to hire interns

Now more than ever, college students should sign up for paid internships.  Experts say making money while learning job skills can pay off a lot in the future.

Friday afternoon, one Sioux Falls business started searching for its next batch of interns in a way applicants will never forget.

A group of people meet in one place, looking to make a connection after getting to know each other with a few quick questions.  Sounds like speed-dating right?  But, it’s not, they’re interviews to hire interns.

“Today is Meet, Greet & Repeat.  It’s an annual affair here at Lawrence & Schiller,” says the advertising agency’s Executive Creative Director John Pohlman.

An applicant has two minutes to answer as many questions as possible.  Then, a whistle blows and they move on to the next interview with a different employee at the agency.  Each employee represents a different discipline at Lawrence & Schiller, from art directors and account services to media specialists.

“The ones who can sell themselves in two minutes have already mastered what advertising is all about and that’s making an immediate impact,” Pohlman explains.

One of the applicants is 22-year-old Ava MoweryCarlson.  The USD graduate likes graphic design.

“I want to get my foot in the door.  I’m interested in working in a firm here in Sioux Falls,” she says.

Ava is one of 80 applicants going through Friday’s lightning round interviews.  It’s fast and competitive.  Lawrence & Schiller will only select a handful to become paid interns.

Aside from a weekly wage, these positions can also benefit applicants after their internship is done.  According to a 2015 survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, paid interns are more likely to land a job after they graduate than unpaid interns.  Plus, paid interns make more money once they start a job than unpaid interns.  It’s a bonus that means a lot to applicants like Ava.

“The fact that it’s paid means they respect their designers and that’s important to me,” she says.

Pohlman says it’s important to offer paid positions so interns can focus more on their work at the agency, instead of having a second job.  This gives employers a better evaluation of each intern when considering whether to hire them as full-time staff.

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