Cultureculture: a survey on internships

CULTURECULTURE is studying the impact of unpaid internships on the Canadian arts sector. What does a meaningful internship look like?

Many arts organizations tend to see interns as a short-term solution to a long-term capacity problem, but feel overwhelmed by the hours spent training them. What sort of working culture are we building in the sector by having a largely nomadic unpaid workforce? Could an investment in a different sort of mentorship model help bolster an organization’s succession planning, preserve institutional memory, alleviate capacity issues on the long-term? How can we flip the script about unpaid internships?

We’re looking to create a more mutually-beneficial internship model for arts workers and we need your help. INTERNS: What did your internship look like? Please share your experiences in our survey  before August 15th. Both you and your organization will be anonymous, and the data we collect will help us advocate for more equitable work in the arts.

ARTS WORKERS: If you’d like to participate in a roundtable discussion on the future of arts internships, email JA Pedersen at

Share the survey and roundtable invitation widely (PDF)