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Looking for an International Job? Recent HBS Initiatives Will Make it Easier

For the last two years, providing more resources and support for international job searches has been one of the top ten issues on the agenda of the Student Association. International job searches include any students looking for work outside the U.S. or any international students searching inside the U.S. Recent initiatives by both regional student clubs and MBA Career Services are intended to make the process much easier.

During the summer, Martin Gonzalez (OC) held an internship at MBA Career Services and conducted a needs assessment to establish the most effective way to enhance services for international job seekers. The results of the assessment, which were reached through contacting U.S. and international companies, meeting with students and clubs, and benchmarking other MBA programs, led to the following recommendations:

1) Hire a person to lead international job search initiatives, including programming, counseling and market outreach, and 2) Develop an international “Resource Kit” as part of the Career Services materials and website.

Since then, approval has been received to hire a part-time consultant (on a trial basis until June 2002) to provide support for international job searches. The recruitment process has already started and it is hoped the person will be on-board shortly.

In addition, the international section of the careers web site has been re-launched. It is designed to guide students through the various stages of the international job search and to identify resources available to assist students in their efforts. Check out the international section on the Careers tab at my.hbs. Career Services is also working with Executive Education to provide more networking opportunities with international participants.

Regional clubs are a key resource in any international job search and many are active in promoting career opportunities for their members. Some are organizing specific career panels. On Oct. 19, the European Club will be holding a series of panels on job search strategies for various countries in Europe. The Asia Business Club recently hosted a panel of graduates who provided advice on job seeking in the US for international students, and the Ibero-Americano Club is working on developing panels on specific industries in the region as well as breakfast networking receptions. Career Services also has plans to partner with the clubs to develop resume writing and interview skill workshops specifically for international students.

Many international networking opportunities arise in connection with treks and conferences. Career Services co-sponsors the treks, and most clubs host career fairs and small-group networking lunches at their conferences. This year, the European Conference will include executive search firms presenting job search strategies and providing individual counseling. Both conferences and treks usually include club resume books, which will be compiled by Career Services and sent to companies identified by club members.

In today’s market, all these initiatives are more necessary than ever. As a result of these actions, the school hopes to see an increase in the number of total listings of internships and post-graduation jobs next year, as well as a higher proportion of international opportunities.

December 3, 2001
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