Best MBA Internships Ranked
An MBA internship can help you gain experience and stand out from your peers. Read on to learn about the best MBA internships and how to land one.
Attending graduate school does not guarantee that you'll receive a promotion or job offer when you finish. Because of that fact, many students pursue internships to learn new skills and grow their network. MBA internships are temporary positions that offer professional experience for graduate students in their field of study or career interest. The best MBA internships provide valuable opportunities for students to work alongside established professionals, build their resume and stand out from their peers when searching for a job after graduation.
Best MBA internships
The best MBA internships are the ones that will help you gain relevant experience and knowledge for your degree and career goals. This list provides examples of the best MBA internships for graduate students:
- McKinsey: Most summer internships last eight to 12 weeks, but some may be shorter. Internships are available across the globe if you're looking for international experience. McKinsey typically makes a decision about offering a permanent position before the end of the internship.
- Boston Consulting Group: Internships are typically two to three months and vary based on role and office location. Domestic and international internships are available, and some require travel. The majority of interns receive an offer for a full-time position upon completion of the internship.
- Amazon: MBA interns focus on function-specific projects that have the potential to drive the future of the business. Positions are available across multiple functions within the company, including retail, finance, product management and operations. International and domestic opportunities are available, and the duration is generally 11 to 12 weeks.
- Google: Interns are paired with mentors and participate in a rotational program that exposes them to multiple lines of business within the company. Google MBA internships are available in California, New York and Michigan and last 11 to 12 weeks over the summer.
- Nike: Nike MBA internships in the U.S. are based at the company's headquarters in Beaverton, Ore. Interns are exposed to all areas of the business, including sport, fashion, retail and e-commerce.
- Genentech. MBA students interested in biotechnology will gain hands-on experience with Genentech. Interns work on a project during their 10 to 12 weeks and present their findings to senior management. The company wants MBA interns to have four to six years of prior work history and prefers those with biotechnology, pharmaceutical or health care experience.
How to find the best MBA internships
Graduate students have numerous options when searching for the best MBA internships. These are some of the most common strategies MBA students use to find internship opportunities.
Search the internet
When looking for opportunities, many people simply Google “MBA internships” and choose an internship from the links that come up first. While this may be an OK strategy for generic opportunities, you are better off narrowing down the results. Depending on where you live, what your interests are and what types of companies you want to intern with, you should use keywords to refine your search.
Examples of keywords in your searches are:
- "MBA internships Los Angeles" for opportunities in Los Angeles
- "MBA internships health care" when you want to work in the medical field
- "Paid MBA internships" if you want an internship that offers a salary
- "MBA internships accounting" for accounting internships
- "Part-time MBA internships" for a part-time position
- "Summer MBA internships" if you want an internship that lasts only for the summer
Speak with a guidance counselor
Guidance counselors at school are there to help you. Although this free resource is available, many students never take advantage of it. Your best bet is to meet with a guidance counselor at least once a semester. Regular visits will give the guidance counselor an opportunity to get to know you, your interests and your strengths. When it comes time to recommend internships or write a letter of recommendation, the guidance counselor will be able to speak from personal experience and avoid being generic.
Job fairs and recruiting events
Many colleges, companies and community organizations host job fairs and recruiting events for interns and college graduates. They provide excellent opportunities to network with potential employers and discuss opportunities for summer internships and permanent jobs once you finish your MBA. Some job fairs and recruiting events target specific industries, giving you an opportunity to target those that appeal to you the most.
Talk with the head of your department
Companies reach out to university business departments on a regular basis. They do this to learn about up-and-coming talent and to let professors know what's important to them in their business. Get involved within your department and become friends with the chairperson. That will keep your name top of mind when it comes to opportunities that you'd be a good candidate for.
Contact companies that you're interested in
Not all internship opportunities are publicly available. Create a list of the top 10 companies that you'd like to intern with and make contact with their human resources department. LinkedIn is a valuable resource for finding out who the decision-makers are. Let them know that you're interested in interning with the company, share your talents and explain why you'd be a good fit. Even if they don't have an established internship program available, they may create an opportunity for you if you make a compelling case.
Network with alumni from your school
College alumni tend to have pride in their school and are more willing to help students from their alma mater. Universities often organize networking events where current students can meet alumni and learn about their careers and the companies that they work for. These conversations can provide an inside look at companies or industries that you're thinking about pursuing. In between these events, seek out alumni through campus directories or networking websites such as LinkedIn.
The bottom line
MBA internships give current students the opportunity to gain experience and learn about careers or companies that they're considering. Some internships are paid, which makes them even more valuable. The money that you make can be used to pay for living expenses, minimize the amount you borrow for school or even start repaying your student loans.
If you need help paying for your education, join Juno today. We've negotiated the lowest private MBA loan rates in the industry — guaranteed. Compare our rates and terms with no obligation or credit checks.
Lee is a travel writer and podcast host based in Nashville, Tennessee. Lee spent 18 years in banking and investments and now uses that insider knowledge to write about credit cards, travel, and other personal finance topics.
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