There are some circumstances under which individuals who participate in “for-profit” private sector internships or training programs may do so without compensation. The Supreme Court has held that the term "suffer or permit to work" cannot be interpreted so as to make a person whose work serves only his or her own interest an employee of another who provides aid or instruction. This may apply to interns who receive training for their own educational benefit if the training meets certain criteria.
Every single year, thousands of people make the decision to apply for internships. Whether it’s for the learning experience, school credit, or a desire to get a foot in the door with a certain company—internships are in high demand. For small businesses looking for a way to attract qualified college students to their company, or to save a little money by eliciting entry-level help—an internship program can be a beautiful thing.