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When did working student become title for UNPAID BARN SLAVE....

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  • #21
    Originally posted by findeight View Post
    Ummm...pride? With a dash of ethics?

    Plus you would have needed to have lost a regular full time job fairly recently to qualify.

    Thank you - and as far as I know, you're a working student. Student (Which makes me think 18-22ish though I could be wrong). You aren't entitled to anything and I'm sick of people, especially younger people, who think they are. If you want pay, get another job, or skip the WS position and find a regular paying job. Or, a grand idea would be to find a WS position that actually pays.

    You need to weigh your benefits and how those effect your decisions before you dive into anything, this is no exception. People don't work their butts off so you can collect unemployment while playing with ponies that cost more than what they make in a year on your rise to the top so you can get paid at the same time as getting other benefits from the position.

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    • #22
      Well, pds, if you collected unemployment you'd have to be VOLUNTEERING to be a WS. I don't know what the rules are on barter as far as state unemployment but I know the IRS doesn't take kindly to unreported income including barter, and the disability people love to catch someone on 100% disability running a daycare, mowing lawns or anything else.

      Not really a train of thought that has value, KWIM?
      Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
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      • #23
        Originally posted by horsegal301 View Post
        Thank you - and as far as I know, you're a working student. Student (Which makes me think 18-22ish though I could be wrong). You aren't entitled to anything and I'm sick of people, especially younger people, who think they are. If you want pay, get another job, or skip the WS position and find a regular paying job. Or, a grand idea would be to find a WS position that actually pays.

        You need to weigh your benefits and how those effect your decisions before you dive into anything, this is no exception. People don't work their butts off so you can collect unemployment while playing with ponies that cost more than what they make in a year on your rise to the top so you can get paid at the same time as getting other benefits from the position.

        Nope, I'm not young (far from it) and I'm not a working student. LOL This post just got me to thinking about all those poor, poor overworked working students.

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        • #24
          always. Working Students are all Slaves.
          My Horse Show Photography/ Blog

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          • Original Poster

            #25
            My point in starting this is...

            Too many places and people ABUSE the term "Working Student". They have little or nothing to offer in the way of top notch experience, and are using the title just to get stable hands without paying for them...

            True working student positions are great and like I said before I had a great one 20 years ago. Just tired of seeing people taking advantage of young people (Which I am far from) and pretending to teach them.

            The ad I was referring to probably would be more truthful to advertise for barn help in exchange for board and lessons. Also maybe get in 2 people so they would have time to have a real job and make money if they needed too.
            Last edited by grandprixjump; Jan. 16, 2013, 02:01 PM.
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            • #26
              Originally posted by pds View Post
              Nope, I'm not young (far from it) and I'm not a working student. LOL This post just got me to thinking about all those poor, poor overworked working students.

              Sorry, didn't mean to aim it at you! But if there are more people with that general train of thought... then grrrr.

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              • #27
                I'm currently a working student for a hunter/jumper and dressage barn. Don't own my own horse, so I help out around the barn, at shows and etc. in exchange for riding a couple horses a day and lessons. Works out quite well for me. I only do it during the summer and winter breaks from college though.
                "One reason why horses are happy is because they are not trying to impress other horses."
                "Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear, or a fool from any direction"

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                • #28
                  Originally posted by grandprixjump View Post
                  But with no housing and hours that say 42 per week.
                  Do you really think that 42hours per week are long work hours? To me that sounds like short work hours for someone working in the horse world.

                  Originally posted by pds View Post
                  Can a WS recieve unemployment benefits while doing the WS thing if all they get is board and lessons in exchange?
                  Best I know to get unemployment (if you qualify for it, obviously) you have to be willing and able to work. If you are working as a WS then you are not willing and ABLE to work so no you can not collect unemployment for the days that you are working at the barn. At least not while being honest.

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by findeight View Post
                    Ummm...pride? With a dash of ethics?

                    Plus you would have needed to have lost a regular full time job fairly recently to qualify.
                    Not quite true. You must have had a job with an employer that paid unemployment insurance for you and been laid off in the right way. If you were fired for bad crap you did or were an independant contractor? No Unemployment Insurance paid into the system, so no benefits back out for you.

                    Which leads me to...

                    Originally posted by horsegal301 View Post
                    You aren't entitled to anything and I'm sick of people, especially younger people, who think they are. If you want pay, get another job, or skip the WS position and find a regular paying job. Or, a grand idea would be to find a WS position that actually pays.

                    You need to weigh your benefits and how those effect your decisions before you dive into anything, this is no exception. People don't work their butts off so you can collect unemployment while playing with ponies that cost more than what they make in a year on your rise to the top so you can get paid at the same time as getting other benefits from the position.
                    If you want to rag on people collecting unemployment, then you'd better be prepared to be pissed off at the people in your health insurance pool who do things like have premature babies, triple by-pass surgeries and other expensive stuff. Blame the old, infirm or basically infertile folks while you are putting the hate on the "young and entitled."

                    Why? See above on unemployment insurance. Unemployment isn't paid for in the same way that benefits like food stamps and welfare are.

                    I agree that "Labor" here has something to do with creating the problem. When you work for free, you lower the value of your labor. That's how we got into this mess: People who wanted to work hard also came with enough wealth to be able to do that "pay your dues" thing with less and less compensation. Employers (here, trainers) naturally took those opportunities. They will continue to do that as long as they can find people who will effectively pay to work.

                    The other thing that "Labor" has done and continued to do to shoot themselves in the foot is accepting work paid to them as an independent contractor when the job properly meets the IRS's definition of employment. By doing this, employers don't have to pay unemployment insurance. Also, they might have workers being laid off left and right, but that's not reported. In this case, the independent contracts accepts the risks and costs of an industry that doesn't want to provide steady, full time work.

                    Just so you know.
                    The armchair saddler
                    Politically Pro-Cat

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                    • #30
                      Working student positions are designed as apprenticeships. Some may treat them as barn slave positions, and demand labor without providing instruction, but the point of doing that work in a proper WS arrangement includes learning to do it all properly.

                      Back in the old days, you could learn to run a very tight ship that way; there was a right way and a wrong way to muck a stall, handle turnout, groom and tack a horse for the client or pro to ride etc. In other words - you were taught how and when to do all those things and that TUITION was part of the compensation received by the WS, in addition to lessons or perhaps a stipend or housing or whatever.
                      **********
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                      • #31
                        Have you ever thought about what they pay law students to work their asses off for big firms? Zero.

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                        • #32
                          Originally posted by grandprixjump View Post
                          I was looking through a reputable equestrian website at jobs. One was for an eventer I haven't heard of, they want a 6 day a week barn help, in exchange for board for 1 horse and a lesson a week. Must be the most expensive board in the country...

                          It's crazy that people expect a slave to work for them in exchange for NOTHING....Because they call it a Working Student...

                          Working students should be respectable learning experience, NOT FREE LABOR FOR NOTHING....
                          Let's say it's a smallish barn-- 7 hours of work/day x 6 days/week at $10/hr= $420. Board alone in a lot of places costs double than that, not to mention the lesson. If it's not a huge huge operation and a person who is could to work for, it could be a really good opportunity. Not everyone wants to grow up to be a trainer. Some people want to grow up to be a barn manager. Doing the chores end of things might be great training for that. Depends what you're looking to get out of the experience.
                          ~Veronica
                          "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
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                          • #33
                            Originally posted by Atlas Shrugged View Post
                            Have you ever thought about what they pay law students to work their asses off for big firms? Zero.
                            Huh? I can assure you as a summer associate at a big firm I was indeed paid and that was absolutely the norm for firms.

                            Do you mean in-semester co-ops/internships? Sometimes those are unpaid but usually they're for credit. And tend to be government/court/non-profit experiences and not at big firms.
                            ~Veronica
                            "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"
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                            • #34
                              We can hire interns legally and pay them nothing but we have to give them educational benefits (e.g. we have to have them doing actual things like code or graphics etc. instead of just having them make coffee). That doesn't mean that we have to teach them to code, just that we have to be observing and mentoring.

                              That's how internships work. The idea is that you learn how to actually work in the field instead of just sitting in a classroom...because those two things are very very different.

                              You're not unemployed as a working student, you're underemployed. Welcome to the world that many of us live in. Wal-Mart employees can't collect unemployment either, and they often make less than a Working Student's compensation package is. It's not slave labor (nor SLAVE LABOR). You get a massive benefit. If that benefit is not to your liking, don't do it.

                              But I guarantee there are people who want it and deserve it.

                              And sure, is it more valuable to be some BNT's WS than some local barn? Possibly. But man, it's also valuable experience to a lot of riders that don't have their own horses and that's an in for those people without the money to just pay for that experience.

                              Think of it this way - to get value from...well...anything, you have to either pay in money or in labor. In college, you pay in money (and grad school it's both!). In a WS position you pay in labor.

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                              • #35
                                Originally posted by Atlas Shrugged View Post
                                Have you ever thought about what they pay law students to work their asses off for big firms? Zero.
                                And if you have been paying attention to stuff being written about higher ed and law school, people are starting to get a little bummed about the ROI on those degrees.

                                A part of that has been people figuring out that unpaid internships depress wages for those who will want their first jobs in a year or two, degree in hand.

                                And some lawsuits recently about law schools not being quite complete/honest in reporting their graduates' salaries and employment status.

                                So Lucassb is right: Think of the WS position as an apprenticeship and your cost some form of tuition. Take that schooling if you can afford it, but also make sure their is a decent ROI there. It screws everyone-- even you when you hang out a shingle!-- if you don't insist on everyone getting paid a living wage.
                                The armchair saddler
                                Politically Pro-Cat

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                                • #36
                                  The only aspect to the post that seems a little off to me is when you insinuated that this was a barn with no BNT/R. In my opinion, the advantage of the Working Student position is to be working under someone who is extremely accomplished. However, for someone who maybe wants to learn more about eventing or showing but can't afford it would find a position like the one you described well suited to their needs.


                                  But, seriously, point me to the Olympian or International GP rider who needs an Unpaid Barn Slave in exchange for lessons and board. I would wear the UBS badge proudly if it meant I could work my butt off and get that kind of experience for my horse and I.

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                                  • #37
                                    It screws everyone-- even you when you hang out a shingle!-- if you don't insist on everyone getting paid a living wage.
                                    You know, I used to believe this too, until I started a business.

                                    I cannot afford to hire someone that does not actually produce work to the standard that my business requires. Many people (even those right out of school) DO NOT have the requisite skills nor experience to actually come in the door and produce the work that is required.

                                    So I have two choices.

                                    A. I hire someone who can actually "make money" for the business and pay them well.

                                    B. I give some intern a chance to earn the experience, and then actually hire them when they are trained "enough" to produce the actual results that are expected.

                                    That's the only way to keep a business afloat. And I'm in a fairly lucrative one. We all know that most of the local barns aren't exactly rolling in it.

                                    Just pointing that out...

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                                    • #38
                                      Originally posted by pds View Post
                                      Can a WS recieve unemployment benefits while doing the WS thing if all they get is board and lessons in exchange?
                                      Originally posted by pds View Post
                                      Well if they are not getting paid $ as a working student what would prevent them from collecting unemployment?
                                      You have to have worked for a company paying unemployment insurance for you for a certain period prior to your unemployment claim in order to prevail. The reason for leaving that employer must also fit a specific criteria. If a WS can qualify, they would have to declare the income from the WS position which would reduce the UE benefit.

                                      Originally posted by Kadenz View Post
                                      My entire time in the horse world (30ish years) working student has been exactly a euphemism for unpaid barn worker.
                                      Yes and no. The position the OP is talking about is NOT unpaid. In fact, depending on where it is located, it could provide decent compensation for unskilled work. If I had the same deal where I currently am, which is relatively inexpensive in the grand scheme for board and lessons, it would be about $800 a month.

                                      You could look into the FLSA and see what the salary rules are for whatever occupation WS would fall under. If the compensation does meet the minimum requirements, well...you've got a point. If it does meet minimum requirements, then there's no reason to be upset about the "slave" labor. Just don't take the job.


                                      Originally posted by OneGrayPony View Post
                                      We can hire interns legally and pay them nothing but we have to give them educational benefits (e.g. we have to have them doing actual things like code or graphics etc. instead of just having them make coffee). That doesn't mean that we have to teach them to code, just that we have to be observing and mentoring.
                                      Actually, not completely. If you are a for-profit company, you cannot legally hire unpaid interns if they are doing any work that you would normally have to pay another employee to do or if they are providing any advantage to the company by being there. That's VERY limiting. In other words: If you have unpaid interns that are just observing...you're fine with the FLSA. If you have unpaid interns that are actually doing anything (like coding/graphics), you are most likely in violation.

                                      Check out this for an easy-ish way to determine if there is an FLSA violation:
                                      http://www.moneysideoflife.com/illeg...hip-flowchart/
                                      Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                                      Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

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                                      • #39
                                        Originally posted by OneGrayPony View Post
                                        You know, I used to believe this too, until I started a business.

                                        I cannot afford to hire someone that does not actually produce work to the standard that my business requires. Many people (even those right out of school) DO NOT have the requisite skills nor experience to actually come in the door and produce the work that is required.

                                        So I have two choices.

                                        A. I hire someone who can actually "make money" for the business and pay them well.

                                        B. I give some intern a chance to earn the experience, and then actually hire them when they are trained "enough" to produce the actual results that are expected.

                                        That's the only way to keep a business afloat. And I'm in a fairly lucrative one. We all know that most of the local barns aren't exactly rolling in it.

                                        Just pointing that out...
                                        If you are for-profit and are using option B for unpaid interns, you are most likely in violation of the FLSA.
                                        Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                                        Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

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                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by Atlas Shrugged View Post
                                          Have you ever thought about what they pay law students to work their asses off for big firms? Zero.

                                          Same for every internship I ever had.. And I was doing regular employee work for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week.

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