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Summer Job Reports

Company name: Corporate America

Job title: Finance Intern

Avg. hours per week: 40

Responsibilities: Starting right fielder for the Finance Gangstas softball team. Sometimes played left field if Joe was traveling. Also, I had to do some activity-based costing projects.

Career plans: I want to return to Corporate America but I’m not sure about the Finance department. My natural spot in softball is centerfield but there is no way that internal auditor guy is ever going to give up that position. That’s why I’m thinking Marketing. The Marketing Beer Guzzlers have a definite weak spot in center.

Comments: That ABC project I had normally would have taken me a week, but since they didn’t have anything else for me to do, I spread it out over ten. The only thing that stunk about the whole summer was that my computer screen faced the entrance to my cubicle, so I was constantly alt-tabbing away from my Yahoo! fantasy baseball team to an excel spreadsheet.

Company name: Investment Bank

Job title: Summer Associate

Avg. hours per week: 90+

Responsibilities: Building financial models; conducting due diligence; attending clients meetings; waiting around until four in the morning for pitch books to come out of the print shop; canceling weekend trips with my girlfriend at 7pm every Friday night; fighting with the T&E department to be reimbursed for four client lap dances.

Career plans: While the lifestyle is difficult, I’m definitely going back to Investment Banking. You just make way too much money not to do it.

Comments:Even if you can’t enjoy the cash immediately, banking is still worth it. I figure if I hit the cover off the ball, I’ll be dating a stripper from Scores within five years. After seven, I’ll ditch the stripper for someone more respectable. Like an analyst assistant.

Company name: Consulting Firm

Job title: Summer Associate

Avg. hours per week: 70

Responsibilities: After a week of training in Nantucket, I spent eight weeks on a client engagement in Toledo. The deliverable was an 84-slide presentation for senior management. My team leader gave me sole responsibility of 12 slides in the deck. 12 slides! I couldn’t believe I was given so much responsibility for a summer job, especially when I had no previous consulting experience. When an associate director of purchasing at the client said “great slide” about one of my slides, I was ecstatic. He was actually complimenting my work…and the work of that graphics guy in a call center in Bangalore, India.

Career plans: I will probably return to consulting as I have no idea what I want to do.

Comments: The culture at Consulting Firm is very diverse unlike other professional service industries – there was one associate who didn’t go to an Ivy League undergrad and there was a husband and wife team who only worked six days a week so their nanny could get a day off from raising their children.

Company name: Hedge Fund

Job title: Analyst

Avg. hours per week: 65

Responsibilities: Researched food and beverage stocks for $2bn long-short hedge fund.

Career plans: If I get an offer, I’m taking it.

Comments: I don’t know if I really like the job all that much – never really been all that interested in the stock market – and I’m lukewarm on Hedge Fund itself – the guys were a little too arrogant, even for me. But this is what you do at HBS if you did banking and PE before you came to school. I figure if everyone else is doing it, there has to be a good reason. But I’m not completely following the herd. If I don’t get an offer, I’ll also look at opportunities in distressed debt, real estate and biotech.

November 22, 2004
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