*Couldn't think of a better title. Suggestions?
If a student pursuing a degree in a highly technical field has already completed all of their upper division coursework, and the only courses seperating the student from graduating are a senior project and some 100-level introductory science courses in another field that are a requirement, can they make their salary request based on an entry level full time salary of a graduate instead of a part-time intern?
For instance, experience aside, suppose an average person with a particular degree makes $50,000 out of college. However, an intern (at any class level) makes $20 per hour. Not considering taxes, 50K is $4100 per month or $26 per hour at 40 hours per week. Say the student wants to make $26 per hour, but only part time while taking a reduced class load. Assuming they are not applying as a full-time employee, can they base their justification for a higher salary / hourly rate based on graduate salaries?
*Work experience can play a big factor here, so let's assume none. The company is getting a fresh student with an essentially "complete" collegiate-level academic experience.
UPDATE: Based on the answers provided, indicating that I will be in the same 'experience boat' whether I graduate now or not, it doesn't actually seem to make much of a difference. While one may be able to start working full time after graduating, depending on the students' workload and the employer, it may be possible to swap the two semesters.