Thursday, April 5, 2012

Internship stats

I feel as if I need to document my internship journey in its entirety. I know, I know, it's been the main topic of this blog for the last three months, but this is going to be it.

I first started to apply to internships in December. A.T. Kearney was the first one on the 19th, followed very quickly by the other consulting firms that perform on-campus recruiting. I also submitted a ModCloth internship application to interview in San Francisco when I would be there for the Bay Area trek.

"Wow, you have a great memory" would think I if I was reading this on another blog. The fact of the matter is I actually have a spreadsheet set up with a listing of all the companies that I applied to, for what position, at when I submitted, when I would hear back (if it was an on-campus job), interview invites, and finally the results in a colour-coded scheme of Red if rejected and Green if accepted.

Contained in this spreadsheet were tabs that had the job listing copy + pasted, for later reference. Kinda helpful with interviews later.

This spreadsheet has made a very handy reference as to what is a typical job search for an MBA.

No of applications: 27
No of interviews: 10 (includes three second rounds and one third round)
No of offers: 2 (and one ambiguously defined "waitlist")

I think I'm in the center of the bell curve here. I know classmates that did upwards of 15 interviews before getting an offer, and some that got an offer for the first company they interviewed at. This success appears to be random. One of the smartest fellows in the class - he's on a full Dean's scholarship - hasn't received an offer yet. Another one who has a 780 GMAT didn't get moved onto the second round for his dream job at Amazon. There's a woman who came into the program right out of undergrad and is working for Deutsche Bank. One classmate received an internship offer before she event started school! I believe she received it through the Consortium (if you're Hispanic or Black, you should check it out).

Well, either which way, I'm now a part of the 61% with offers :)

I'm not going to list all the places that I applied to, but I will note this one experience with ModCloth that changed my entire job searching outlook. I received an invitation to interview at the last minute with them. As such, I had the last slot of the day. So I turn up and engage in a good conversation with the HR rep. About halfway through, he admits that he invited me because he was curious why I was applying for the internship - my background, he explained, didn't seem suited for the role or the company. But after talking with me, he could see that I was very passionate, intelligent, and would be pretty awesome.

I walked away with his words ringing in my ears, and I took it to heart. With my resume, I looked like I did finance in oil and gas; but, meeting people in person or chatting to them overcame that initial observation. Thus, the significant importance of networking kicked in and I tried really hard to put myself in a position where I would be judged on other factors outside of my resume. I also reworked my resume over and over to de-emphasise the finance piece.

As such, networking made an indelible impression. I'll probably write about this area a bit more indepth later.

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