This Is What 8 Former Condé Nast Interns Are Doing With Their Settlement Checks

Photo: D Dipasupil/FilmMagic/ Getty Images.
Ever wonder how much cash the ex-interns who joined the class-action suit against Condé Nast got paid? Or, better yet, what they did with the cash? It's unclear exactly how many Anna Wintour or Graydon Carter aspirants actually opted to join the suit by the mid-June deadline, but those who did received their checks in the past few weeks. A quick recap: Back in 2013, former interns from W and The New Yorker sued the publishing behemoth for not paying them enough — at least minimum wage — for their internships. (Condé Nast promptly suspended its internship program as a result). Last November, the company agreed to provide $5.8 million to interns who had paid their dues (while being unpaid), between June 2007 and December 2014. The win for inadequately compensated interns everywhere could've potentially affected an estimated 7,500 upstarts who were pursuing their dreams in the fabulous world of glossies during that timeframe. The payouts differed based on the time of year, type of internship, and whether or not there was any stipend involved. Summer interns may have received more dough than anyone working during the school year, and fashion closet interns got heftier reparations than desk-jockeys who weren't schlepping massive garment bags all over NYC. Summer fashion closet interns reportedly made approximately $1,400 or $1,900, non-closet summer interns nabbed $1,000 or $1,400, and non-summer interns received $700 or $1,250, depending on whether or not they received stipends, respectively, according to WWD. Now that the checks have arrived, here's what eight former Condé interns already spent, or are planning to spend, their retroactive internship salaries on, from the pragmatic (straight into that savings account!) to the slightly more fanciful (Chanel bag, anyone?). Check out their full budgetary breakdowns from the settlement funds, ahead.
Photographed by Rockie Nolan.
Teen Vogue intern, 2013: “Because I'm a type-A monster, I budgeted my settlement money between student loan payments, savings, a trip I'm taking to Europe in the spring, paying off this month's credit card bill, and a minor shopping trip. What I should have done is treat myself and put it towards a Céline bag, because I never splurge on myself. But, I couldn't live with the guilt, so...into responsible things it goes.” Self intern, 2011: "I’ve been awaiting this money since I first filled out my settlement what seems like forever ago. Seriously, the idea of getting reimbursed for one of the, debatably, worst and most expensive summers of my life was a genuinely exciting prospect for me. I wish I could say I planned on doing something extravagant with my cash but, honestly, I’ll probably save 40% of it, put 40% toward my loans, and either go shopping with the other 20% or put it toward my birthday plane ticket. I guess this is what it’s like to be an adult (spoiler: it's lame)." intern, 2009: “I'm using my money to take a trip to South America. I had been planning on booking a big vacation for a while, but getting this surprise check in the mail — which is always nice! — was exactly the extra push I needed to go ahead and book it.”

intern, 2010: "I got my check last week, and it went straight to my credit card bill (sorry, it's nothing juicy). But it felt great to pay it ahead of schedule and gave me more room to hit a couple sales — I went a little HAM at Sephora, hit the Bloomingdale's friends-and-family sale, and got some Gap basics, a.k.a. cozy new sweaters and a solid beanie."
Photographed by Raven Ishak.

intern, 2009: “I somehow received nearly double what I’d expected; it’s the equivalent of two months’ rent. Not complaining! I’d like to put it all into savings like a real adult. But realistically, two-thirds will get saved (for a mortgage, or something not at all on my radar yet). The rest will go towards an international trip somewhere in 2016. In the immediate future, a small portion will inevitably be spent on good meals. And weed.” W intern, 2013: “I had an amazing experience interning at W and learned a lot. I loved, and still love, my bosses there. I'm really boring and I'm going to put the money into my savings. But I am going to make it a round number, so I’ll spend $82 on dinner and booze — you know, as ya do — and then put the rest in the bank."

intern, 2009: “Getting that check in the mail was the best way to kick off Halloween. What am I doing with the money? Putting it all towards my recent Chanel bag purchase. Felt appropriate!" Brides intern, 2008: “After receiving the money, I put half into my savings account and booked a trip to Los Angeles to visit my best friend with the rest. So nice to get what feels like play money in the mail, especially when you're a struggling twentysomething living in NYC.”
Photo: Adam Gault/ Getty Images

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