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September 2012

The Newsletter of the Graduate Management Admission Council

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Data to Go: Internships Put Management Students on the Fast Track

Providing students a way to gain work experience and prove themselves to potential employers, internships have long been a staple of two-year MBA programs. And they are increasingly attractive to students of other types of management programs.

“Employers want to see work experience, and internships can provide that ─ particularly for younger students who haven’t built up an extensive work record before entering management programs,” said Michelle Sparkman Renz, GMAC director of research communications.

GMAC’s 2012 Corporate Recruiters Survey confirms the importance of work experience as 61 percent of employers who plan to hire recent business school graduates in 2012 consider job function when looking at work experience, 51 percent look at industry, and 44 percent look for length of experience, she noted. Internships appear to be a key technique for companies in hiring, illustrated in the graphic below by the percentage of companies in each industry that hired MBA interns in 2011.

And the Global Management Education Graduate Survey of the class of 2012 shows students with internship experiences reap the benefits even prior to completing their graduate management degree:

  • 95 percent of interns rated the value of their internship as good to outstanding.
  • Interns expected a 78 percent increase in post-degree earnings from their pre-degree salary, as compared with peers who did not have an internship. They expected a 50 percent salary increase from their pre-degree earnings.
  • Some 40 percent considered their internship as a job search method, with 70 percent converting their internship to a job. 


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