Sometimes businesspeople get a bad wrap, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t a vital part of our economy, and our society as a whole. Many students enter college looking to declare a major that will help them be successful post-graduations, and few majors fit the bill quite like business and finance.
But business and finance internships aren’t what they used to be. They extend far beyond the accounting and investment banking that we are used to hearing about. That isn’t to say that accounting and investment banking aren’t great career paths for a recent graduate. It just means that while you are looking for a business internship, you’ll find that you don’t have to limit yourself.
There are two main kinds of internships for business and finance:
The two types of internships can be as different as college and business school. MBA scholarships are generally a requirement of a school program, and are seen as a stepping-stone into full time employment. Most students who participate in MBA internships and do a great job can expect to be either offered full time employment, or get a stellar letter of recommendation to another firm that is anxious to hire talented business school graduates.
Undergraduate business internships are very different, and can vary from office assisting to data entry to client services. While intern stereotype (lots of filing and copying) holds true in many industries, business school students may find that they need to put in a few summers as the office intern in order to secure a position with their company after they graduate.
One thing that is very special about business and finance internships is that (with few exceptions) they all pay. And usually pretty well. The hourly wage for an office intern, especially one who shows a genuine interest in the company’s work and is actively looking to take on more and more responsibility, is generally higher than internships that offer summer stipends, like those in the arts, media, or nonprofit organizations. While you shouldn’t let the paycheck define the success of your internship experience, it can also help to know that you’ll have more than pocket money after spending time in the file room, or grabbing coffee for your boss.
But if you are interested in business, but also want to work outside of traditional corporate America, make sure that you look into internships outside of the traditional career tracks. Every kind of business can benefit from someone with an aptitude for numbers and the tenacity that often comes with an education in business. If you happen to have a head for business and a heart for cooking, music or anything else, you might be able to combine the two in a small business internship. You should definitely take advantage of the wide range of possibilities that exist for business majors in the world of internships.
If you are interested in finding out more about specific internships for business majors, please read through our internship listings.