Since 1973, MAIP has helped jumpstart the careers of more than 2,400 Asian/Asian American, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latino, Black/African American, American Indian, Alaska Native, Multiracial and Multiethnic aspiring advertising professionals.
Each year, undergraduate and graduate students are selected for a 10-week paid summer internship at [a] 4A’s member advertising agency. Students gain practical work experience, establish key industry contacts, and perhaps most importantly, become better prepared to land a full-time job in advertising when they graduate. At the same time, the program gives advertising agencies a cost-effective way to identify and recruit talented multicultural students.
Upon completion of the program, interns become members of the MAIP Alumni Association, a close-knit family of over 2,400 MAIP graduates that fosters the development of future MAIP interns as well as the professional development of the program’s alumni.
MAIP is an admirable effort. Hell, some of MultiCultClassics’ best friends are MAIP graduates. At the same time, has anyone done the MAIP math?
The program has been around for 40 years and boasts over 2,400 graduates, which translates to about 60 people annually. This might sound pretty good at first blush—until the figure is put into perspective. For example, if the new Publicis Omnicom Groupe employed every MAIP graduate, they would account for less than 2% of the total staff. If Publicis Omnicom Groupe and WPP merged and employed every MAIP graduate, they would account for less than 1% of the total staff. And if Publicis Omnicom Groupe, WPP and IPG merged and employed every MAIP graduate, they would account for roughly 0.7% of the total staff. Plus, keep in mind that MAIP covers multiple minority groups. At the rate detailed above, MAIP does not make much of a dent in the dearth of diversity.
But what’s really obscene is that MAIP likely accomplishes far more than WPP’s approach to diversity, Omnicom’s Diversity Development Advisory Committee, the Human Digital Agency and IPG Firsts combined.