While the internship-to-job funnel has long existed in the banking and consulting industries, a Wall Street Journal article reports that more industries are filling full-time positions with their former MBA interns. And they’re not just increasing their internship-to-job rates, but some have started their hiring a year before the position start date, offering full-time positions to future MBAs while they’re still in their internship positions.
The result: Students have begun scrambling for top internship positions almost as soon as they begin their b-school studies. As the stakes rise and employers begin to rely on an internship as a sort of interview, the pressure builds to secure that coveted internship that may turn into a long-term position two or more years down the line.
Here are some stats from the WSJ article, and then a nice graphic that they posted:
• 40% of Darden’s class of 2012 accepted full-time job offers from their summer employers. In 2010 that percentage was only 25%.
• 31% of Columbia’s 2012 class accepted full-time positions from their summer internship employers. In 2010, less 20% of graduates made the internship-to-job jump.
• At Caesars Entertainment Corp., five out of six full-time MBA hires took full-time positions this year.
• 69% of summer interns seeking full-time employment received job offers.
• Each year Bain & Co. hires 400 full-time MBAs; 40% of them are former interns.
• 5 out of 18 interns at Enova have returned this year for full-time positions.
Implications for MBA Applicants
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. And again: You need to have a clear goal when you apply to business school, certainly when you arrive at business school. The critical internship search starts within weeks of the start of classes. To make the most of your MBA investment, arrive with direction and focus so that you will know where to expend time and energy. If you see something while there that looks better than your original goal, go for it. But don’t arrive at b-school thinking you will have time to figure out what you want to do not only while you are there, but with the rest of your life. You won’t. Do that homework before classes start.
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