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Internships - January 06, 2005

High season for recruiting interns opens

A large and growing number of financial institutions are routinely using interns to inject young blood into their organizations both for short periods and the longer term. Provided the recruitment process has been thought through and adequately timed, internships are a means to secure high calibre and eager candidates who will be willing to go above and beyond to contribute to corporate goals.

While interns typically provide short-term assistance by supporting existing teams or helping in the launch of new projects, top recruiters also regard them as a pool and breeding ground for future permanent employees. Leading institutions are openly marketing their internship programmes as pre-recruitment devices. Internships indeed give companies the unique opportunity to hire someone on a no-commitment basis, get them familiar with the organisation and the job, get the work done and evaluate them before deciding whether to keep them on permanently.

"Summer and end of programme internships have been a mandatory part of our degree courses for several decades, while the sandwich-year is a recent innovation now adopted by over 90% of the participants in the Master in Management (MiM) programme", says Daniel Haguet who manages the final year Capital Markets Major of France’s second most selective Grande Ecole (MiM) programme.

"The graduate finance programmes at EDHEC Business School are a great source of high-potential, well-trained, internationally-minded new recruits for the asset management industry", says Frédéric Ducoulombier, head of the school’s MSc in Finance programme, a demanding one year course that attracts participants from all five continents. "Our finance programmes combine academic rigour with industry orientation, and technical training with managerial skills development. Programme contents, methods, and structure are designed to concur to the preparation of industry ready graduates", he explains.

MiM Capital Markets and MSc in Finance courses draw heavily upon the expertise developed in the EDHEC Risk and Asset Management Research Centre and enable the latest advances in research to be brought to participants’ portfolios of skills. Seminars are delivered by an international faculty team featuring academics actively involved in applied research, consulting or executive education, and practitioners with extensive industry experience. Learning methods foster independent thinking, problem-solving skills, managerial and communication competencies and the ability to function as a team member and project leader in a multicultural environment.

"Internships are a win-win proposal: they provide degree candidates with opportunities to further their industry readiness and offer companies an attractive vehicle for integrating fresh input over short periods and testing potential permanent recruits", Professor Ducoulombier concludes.

With the growing awareness of the many benefits of internships, financial institutions vying for the best candidates are approaching leading business schools to secure a privileged access to students and graduates.

"The closest forms of association include large endowments and donations and multi-year contributions of corporate lecturers and keynote speakers", says Professor Haguet. "The financing by Société Générale and Fininfo of the two virtual dealing rooms and their contribution of specialist and executive time to training sessions and conferences are textbook examples of close relations between financial institutions and EDHEC Business School", he adds.

"Over 70 companies take part in our annual job forum in Paris – 20% of these are financial institutions and many MNCs also have interesting finance jobs on offer", says Lydia Corbeau, head of the internship and career office at EDHEC Business School. “The main motivation of these recruiters is to have a "direct contact" with students and recent graduates. Company delegates, which include human resources and technical personnel, provide potential candidates with information on career paths and job assignments and advertise openings", she adds.

"Companies also come to campus for finance career days, employer briefings and recruitment meetings organized throughout the year", explains Professor Haguet.
Axa Investment Managers, Deutsche Bank, Calyon, Dexia, Exane, Fidelity Investments, Fortis, HSBC and JPMorganChase are examples of financial companies that have come to campus over the Fall term to try and sign recruits as early as possible in the year.

Internship offers and job openings can also be broadcast electronically with the help of the school’s internship and career office which advertises summer internship and graduate programmes and maintains online databases.

Last year, we processed about 6,500 internship offers and close to 5,000 job offers targeted at students and recent graduates from the MiM and MSc programmes", says Catherine Savin at the Nice office.

"Our Master in Management Capital Markets students can start as early as March and the MSc in Finance candidates are available from July 1st", says Professor Haguet.
As most graduate students secure internships or permanent positions during winter, now is the right time to approach them.

If you would like to forward an internship offer or a job opening, or would like to receive further information on how to target EDHEC Business School students, please contact Catherine Mathieu.