Interns Learn to Budget in Small and Large Cities

Source: The Pioneer 

By: Talia Rudes

Internship Infographic


This summer, senior Jane Carmody worked 40 hours per week as an unpaid intern at the U.S. House of Representatives. She was one of 109 student recipients of the Whitman Internship Grant (WIG), but because Washington, D.C. is one of the most expensive cities in the country, Carmody relied on budgeting and on her savings account to live comfortably.

In 2009 the Student Engagement Center (SEC) began awarding the WIG in order to provide financial support for Whitman students who want to pursue unpaid internship opportunities. Grantees work 20 hours a week for a minimum of 10 weeks and receive $2,400.

Because she rented her studio apartment for $915 per month, Carmody relied on the money she had saved during her semester in Philadelphia, Penn., where rent was only $250 per month, to make ends meet.

In order to keep costs low, Carmody used different strategies to save money. She kept track of her expenses on her iPhone, and she was sure to buy generic brands and sale items at the grocery store. In addition, D.C. itself had a built-in money saving feature.

“There’s a lot of stuff to do in a big city that’s free … I think I only paid for one museum while I was there,” said Carmody.

There were some drawbacks to living in a large city, however. Because the weather in D.C. was fairly hot and humid and because Carmody worked more than an hour-long walk away from her apartment, transportation costs were unavoidable.


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