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Student Internships and Employment Opportunities after Graduation: A Field Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Baert, Stijn

    () (Ghent University)

  • Neyt, Brecht

    () (Ghent University)

  • Siedler, Thomas

    () (University of Hamburg)

  • Tobback, Ilse

    () (KU Leuven)

  • Verhaest, Dieter

    () (KU Leuven)

Abstract

Internships during tertiary education have become substantially more common over the past decades in many industrialised countries. This study examines the impact of a voluntary intra-curricular internship experience during university studies on the probability of being invited to a job interview. To estimate a causal relationship, we conducted a randomised field experiment in which we sent 1,248 fictitious, but realistic, resumes to real job openings. We find that applicants with internship experience have, on average, a 12.6% higher probability of being invited to a job interview.

Suggested Citation

  • Baert, Stijn & Neyt, Brecht & Siedler, Thomas & Tobback, Ilse & Verhaest, Dieter, 2019. "Student Internships and Employment Opportunities after Graduation: A Field Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 12183, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp12183
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Nunley, John M. & Pugh, Adam & Romero, Nicholas & Seals, R. Alan, 2016. "College major, internship experience, and employment opportunities: Estimates from a résumé audit," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 37-46.
    2. Kory Kroft & Fabian Lange & Matthew J. Notowidigdo, 2013. "Duration Dependence and Labor Market Conditions: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(3), pages 1123-1167.
    3. Stijn Baert & Bart Cockx & Niels Gheyle & Cora Vandamme, 2015. "Is There Less Discrimination in Occupations Where Recruitment Is Difficult?," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 68(3), pages 467-500, May.
    4. Benoît Mahy & François Rycx & Guillaume Vermeylen, 2015. "Educational Mismatch and Firm Productivity: Do Skills, Technology and Uncertainty Matter?," De Economist, Springer, vol. 163(2), pages 233-262, June.
    5. repec:spr:empeco:v:55:y:2018:i:3:d:10.1007_s00181-017-1308-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Cerulli-Harms, Annette, 2017. "Generation Internship: The Impact of Internships on Early Labour Market Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 11163, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    7. Stefan Eriksson & Dan-Olof Rooth, 2014. "Do Employers Use Unemployment as a Sorting Criterion When Hiring? Evidence from a Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(3), pages 1014-1039, March.
    8. repec:nbr:nberch:13574 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Stijn Baert & Olivier Rotsaert & Dieter Verhaest & Eddy Omey, 2016. "Student Employment and Later Labour Market Success: No Evidence for Higher Employment Chances," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(3), pages 401-425, August.
    10. David J. Deming & Noam Yuchtman & Amira Abulafi & Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 2016. "The Value of Postsecondary Credentials in the Labor Market: An Experimental Study," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(3), pages 778-806, March.
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    12. David Neumark, 2012. "Detecting Discrimination in Audit and Correspondence Studies," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 47(4), pages 1128-1157.
    13. repec:aea:jeclit:v:56:y:2018:i:3:p:799-866 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Marianne Bertrand & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2004. "Are Emily and Greg More Employable Than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 991-1013, September.
    15. repec:kap:decono:v:167:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1007_s10645-018-9330-2 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Peter A. Riach & Judith Rich, 2004. "Deceptive Field Experiments of Discrimination: Are they Ethical?," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 457-470, August.
    17. Holford, Angus J., 2017. "Access to and Returns from Unpaid Graduate Internships," IZA Discussion Papers 10845, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    18. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "The Theory of "Screening," Education, and the Distribution of Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 283-300, June.
    19. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1979. "Job Matching and the Theory of Turnover," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 972-990, October.
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    22. Drydakis, Nick, 2016. "The effect of university attended on graduates’ labour market prospects: A field study of Great Britain," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 192-208.
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    24. Michael Spence, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-374.
    25. Stijn Baert & Dieter Verhaest, 2019. "Unemployment or Overeducation: Which is a Worse Signal to Employers?," De Economist, Springer, vol. 167(1), pages 1-21, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Di Meglio, Gisela & Barge-Gil, Andrés & Camiña, Ester & Moreno, Lourdes, 2019. "Knocking on Employment´s Door: Internships and Job Attainment," MPRA Paper 95712, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    internship; hiring; human capital; signalling; field experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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