Federal Judge Outlaws Internships
The two NBCUniversal interns, Jesse Moore and Monet Eliastam, claimed in their suit filed on July 3 that they booked travel arrangements, processed petty cash, greeted guests, answered phones, got coffee, and hushed people when they walked into the studio, in their unpaid internships.
Moore and Eliastam said they worked unpaid at least 24 hours a week. Because it classified workers as unpaid or underpaid interns, NBCUniversal did not have to provide unemployment benefits, workers' compensation insurance, or Social Security contributions, according to the suit.
My take: These guys were working inside a big business. Travel arrangements, petty cash, answering phones—that's the nitty-gritty that graduates from Wharton or Harvard Business School never see. It's a taste of corporate culture from the inside.
Let Me Share a Story
In 1958, when I was in U.S. Army, once every two weeks I had KP—Kitchen Police. I scrubbed pots and pans, cleaned up the dining room, peeled potatoes, ran dishes through the washing machine and then stacked them on shelves.
We would show up at 4:45 a.m. and have our breakfast at 5:30 so as to be ready for the onslaught of hungry troopers from 6:00 to 7:30.
One morning I was standing in the breakfast line watching a kid crack eggs on the griddle and bust the yolks in the process. With not enough butter on the griddle surface plus the runny yolks, the kid's end product was hard gray moosh and disgusting.
I walked behind the griddle and elbowed the kid aside to show him how it was done. I broke the eggs into a brown pressed wood cereal bowl, slobbered butter all over the griddle and flopped the eggs in twos out of the bowl and onto the cooking surface. After a minute or so I gently flipped the eggs and then slid them onto the plates of my fellow KPs, who were grateful. These were works of culinary art!