CINCINNATI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Feb 16, 2022–
Today, hair care brand Next of Us (NOU) launched the “Next of Us Intern Opportunity Fund” to help Gen Z interns supplement unpaid internships, in partnership with Pay Our Interns, a leading non-profit organization committed to equitable career access and paid internships, especially for students from historically excluded communities.
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While internships are essential to breaking into professional industries and gaining practical experience, unpaid or low-wage internships create a financial burden impacting future success and growth, especially in young communities of color. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers’ (NACE) 2019 Student Survey 1, 6% of Black students and fewer than 8% of Latinx students had a paid internship experience. Students from low-income backgrounds were more likely to work jobs or internships that limit their long-term career goals, prevent expansion of their professional networks, and impact their overall performance. 2
NOU is a newly launched hair care brand created for the unique textures, porosities, and styles of curly- and coily-haired Gen Zers. Committed to creating access and opportunities for the next generation of changemakers, NOU worked closely with Pay Our Interns to identify challenges associated with career advancement, most significantly experienced by BIPOC and working-class students and interns. The “Next of Us Intern Opportunity Fund” was created to help students jumpstart their careers by offsetting financial needs associated with unpaid internships.
The “Next of Us Intern Opportunity Fund” will award $50,000 in need-based stipends to college students to cover living and educational expenses including food, housing, transportation, or family care/contribution. Between February 16 and March 31, 2022, students can apply for a grant at https://payourinterns.org/nou-internship-opportunity-fund.
“NOU believes in the power of the next generation to make the world better for themselves and generations to come,” said Lela Coffey, Vice President, Multicultural Hair Brands and North America Hair Care Portfolio, P&G Beauty. “We are proud to partner with Pay Our Interns to establish a program that tangibly serves the unique needs of Gen Z communities of color, helping to make their hair and life journey a more fulfilling experience.”
Pay Our Interns works to achieve equitable career path access for all students by identifying gaps and establishing benchmarks; shifting perceptions and spotlighting the growing role of internships in today’s economy; and activating stakeholders to take action toward ending unpaid internships. The organization aims to develop pathways for advancement, with the objective of creating a more equitable workforce, more diverse leadership across all sectors, and a more just world.
“We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with Next of Us on the Intern Opportunity Fund,” said Carlos Mark Vera, Executive Director of Pay Our Interns. “NOU’s mission to support Gen Z and ensure equity and representation in hair care aligns closely with our ongoing work to increase diversity in our overall workforce. The idea that we can all strive to be our best when we have the tools to do so, is something both POI and NOU believe in strongly, and something we believe this fund will help our applicants do.”
For more information, visit the application website, follow @NextofUs on Instagram and Tik Tok, and follow @payourinterns on Instagram and Twitter.
About Next of Us
Founded in 2021, Next of Us (NOU) is a brand of hydrating hair care products made for the texture and porosity needs of a new generation who want to express themselves through fluid styles and individual looks. A group of curly and coily-haired folks helped craft hair care products for the specific ways 3A to 4C hair retains and sustains moisture. NOU includes eight products all suited for various hair and porosity types. All products are sulfate-, paraben-, dye-, and cruelty-free and feature moisture-rich ingredients, including coconut oil, avocado oil, and shea butter. NOU is available for purchase in Walmart stores nationwide and on Walmart.com.
About Procter & Gamble
P&G serves consumers around the world with one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leadership brands, including Always®, Ambi Pur®, Ariel®, Bounty®, Charmin®, Crest®, Dawn®, Downy®, Fairy®, Febreze®, Gain®, Gillette®, Head & Shoulders®, Lenor®, Olay®, Oral-B®, Pampers®, Pantene®, SK-II®, Tide®, Vicks®, and Whisper®. The P&G community includes operations in approximately 70 countries worldwide. Please visit https://www.pg.com/ for the latest news and information about P&G and its brands.
About Pay Our Interns
Pay Our Interns is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that advocates for more paid internships and expanding workforce development opportunities among youth. A student’s socioeconomic status should not be a barrier to getting real-world work experience. POI has offices in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles. For more information visit www.payourinterns.org.
1 National Association of Colleges and Employers’ (NACE) 2019 Student Survey
2 Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce
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PUB: 02/16/2022 08:00 AM/DISC: 02/16/2022 08:02 AM