At the conclusion of a recent job interview, Joe Patterson, the executive director of Cutting Edge Graphic Design in Denver, Colorado, reported having mixed feelings after hiring a single mother as an unpaid intern. The intern, Melissa Stern, and her stellar qualifications, excellent resume, and overall pleasant and professional demeanor only added to Patterson’s feelings of ambivalence. In fact, he reported feeling “extra bad” while making promises of possible full time employment that he knew were unfounded.
Patterson went on to say, “I was expecting some dumb college kid to apply. I was prepared to lie to one of them, but telling a woman supporting a child on her own that the internship ‘is a great opportunity,’ I don’t know that feels… I don’t know,” before sighing and muttering something about running a business being really hard.
At press time, Ms. Stern was naively envisioning being able to quit her current job as a diner waitress.
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