The Work-Based Learning program encourages paid internship experiences, enabling students to gain high-quality work-based experiences while not restricting participation to those who can afford to work without compensation. Texas minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. While employers can set their own rates, employer partners are encouraged to pay a competitive wage. The Texas Workforce Commission notes that employers report paying between $12-$15 per hour for internships, and more in some in-demand fields.
For roles that require tools and equipment or uniforms, employers may not deduct expenses for these materials to the extent that it would reduce the employee’s pay below minimum wage. Where appropriate, employers should consider providing necessary work tools and equipment directly. Where this is not possible, either because employers cannot accommodate additional expenses or because student workers cannot absorb additional costs, the employer should connect with Workforce Solutions. The Workforce Solutions team may be able to identify other funding sources to cover tools, materials, and uniforms for student workers.