Trainees have a 0.1% chance of debuting

Another one of those articles that I was interested in but no one cared about lol T_T...


Article: Celebrity trainees... less than 0.1% chance of debut.. What are their futures?

E-Daily via Naver

With the public's attention focused on Park Shi Hoo and his sexual assault case, people have increasingly become more interested in the lives of celebrity trainees.

The woman who filed the lawsuit against Park Shi Hoo is currently a trainee herself and she's not the only one to have been sexually assaulted, as it was only just recently that another company CEO was arrested for sexually assaulting his own trainees.

'K', a 38 year old woman working in the entertainment industry, currently faces a dilemma regarding the future of her 9 year old daughter. Perhaps due to her daughter's beauty, the people around her are often suggesting how easy it would be for her to become a trainee considering that she works in the industry herself.

Although she considered the idea, she's now  not so sure. "I know that not all trainees are faced with such problems, but to start, the chance of debuting is already so low, and I don't want to expose my daughter to the potential of such crimes on top of that. Even if there's only a 1% chance that trainees are at risk for sexual assault, that 1% turns into 100% once it becomes your family member who's involved."

In the current generation, there are a million trainees with the same dream. Last year, there were 50 new idol group debuts, each with an average number of five members. That means only 250 people made the cut. Even when including the statistics of rookie actors and solo singer debuts, the chance of debuting is less than 0.1%.

The problem of the situation lies in the fact that there is no security system for the trainees who aren't able to debut. 2AM's Jo Kwon is largely regarded as a 'legendary trainee', having trained for over 10 years before finally making his own debut, but for the rest of the trainees in the current market, their futures seem dark.

Trainees range in age from junior high school students to people in their early 20s. Most are still students and thus choose to train and attend school at the same time. AOA's Seolhyun, currently a high school student, would attend class and then train at her company starting after school to the very next morning at 7~8 a.m.

FNC Entertainment's rookie development rep said, "About 3 out of 10 trainees are in the top 20% of their studies but the rest of them are usually more focused on succeeding as a celebrity so they rehearse more than they study."

For those young enough to switch paths before college, there's still a chance that they can study in a different area and secure a future for themselves. Such is the example set by Jang Ha Jin, who entered SM as a trainee in 6th grade and trained until her third year in junior high school. Although she was included in the SNSD line-up, she quit because she wanted to study more and is now a student at KAIST.

Other trainees who lose their chance to debut will usually continue chasing their dreams by moving to a different agency for another opportunity. Unfortunately, as time passes, the pressure builds. Once you reach your mid-20s, it's near impossible to hope for a debut.

Those who are considered 'too old' will then switch paths to become vocal or dance trainers or end up in other broadcasting jobs like home shopping channel hosts.

One company representative said, "I have seen a minority of trainees give up their training and enter adult entertainment because purely to make ends meet. It's impossible for companies to ensure that each of their trainees are able to live proper, healthy lives. It's up to them in the end because it was a choice they made, but there definitely needs to be a system set up so that they're not left completely in the dust when plans foil."


"The industry blows so much hope into these kids with all the audition shows... and now this is what they come out with?"

"Kids should learn composing and writing lyrics instead of trying to become singers... You make a lot more money that way."

"A dose of reality for the students of today... Is it worth the gamble to risk your futures for that 0.1% chance? How are they going to apply singing and dancing to the real world? By becoming karaoke girls?"

"Well, it was their choice to give up studying to become singers so they'll figure out a way if it doesn't work."

"I find it hard to believe that there are really a million trainees at the moment... That means 1 out of 10 teens are a trainee. I bet the number also includes people who make passing statements about wishing to become a trainee but aren't actually..."

"Even the 70-80% who do make it into college have a difficult time finding jobs in the real world.."