With layoffs on Wall Street and a contracting economy, MBA classes of 2009 are facing a very difficult hiring climate. Although many investment banks and other financial institutions are still recruiting, the number of financial institutions has declined and some banks are only recruiting half the number of students they recruited last year. Students, recruiters, and school administrators alike have expressed concern regarding the tight job market.
“If I was a second-year student I wouldn’t be too optimistic,” said Dan Waters, who was recruiting at a job fair at Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. Kellogg Assistant Dean Roxanne Hori said, “It certainly favors the companies to be more selective, which they’re going to be in this environment because everybody’s being more conservative in their hiring targets.”
Despite Wall Street’s predicted loss of 45,000 jobs, Chicago Graduate School of Business Assistant Dean, Stacey Kole still expressed some reserved optimism, “We’ve seen firms go away and the level of M & A activity is down. But there is still a lot of demand for these folks.” Some Business School graduates have already accepted offers, while others have been told that they must postpone their start at work. Still others face fierce competition from both their peers and from those who graduated a few years ago and find themselves back on the job market due to layoffs.
First year student, Ngaio Palmer, summed up the situation, “Most will have a job offer by the time they graduate, but it may not be their preferred company and it may not be their preferred location. But at this point, beggars can’t be choosers.”
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