Remember last week when I started sending applications for my internship ? Well, there are 2 potential offers for me ! I don’t want to say more because nothing is done but I want to talk about something that I discovered when I received these emails : In the US, it’s okay to ask for a specific salary.
Outside of simply working in acoustics, this project is also about discovering cultural differences between France and the United States. And one of them is our behavior with money. In France, talking about money is quite taboo. Of course it depends on the people, but we will rarely say how much we paid for a car or a house.
An example which speaks for itself : A friend of mine has its company with his twin brother. They do all the sound and lightning for concerts, weddings or any other event. We know he makes good money with this business because of what he wears, what he eats, and his lifestyle in general. But he never says an exact number when he talks about his income, he often changes the topic of the conversation and talks about his organic relationship with his clients.
In my spare time, I read a blog about a French woman that now lives in Boston. She has a specific post about the cultural differences and she writes that she knows each of her friends’ salary and bonuses. I knew this was okay to talk about it in the US, but I was not prepared when this email arrived in my inbox :
Do you have a student visa? Do you have a place to live? What stipend would you expect?
Hum … I am currently applying for a visa and I will search for a place to live once I know I can be hired, but how can I answer this last question ?
First, I started to search on the Internet. But I couldn’t find an average salary when you are an intern. So I chose to tell the truth : I want to earn at least $625 per month. I think this, combined to my savings and some financial help that I have, can be enough to live in the US.
Fun fact : I hesitated to write $625, this is my French side 😉
I honnestly don’t know if it’s reasonnable for me to ask for this stipend. I don’t know if it’s too much or ridiculously low. But there is one thing that I know, if I can make good money for this internship, I won’t refuse because everything that I will earn this summer will be reinvested next year !
Depending on the feedback on this article, I will probably ask for a different amount, so let me know your thoughts ! But that will be for the next post !
Thanks for reading and tell me if you spotted any English mistake =)
PS : Don’t forget to download my resume and my vCard if you are interested in hiring me for a 2-month internship this summer, just read this article !