General Timeline: September – December
Regardless of whether you are pursuing an internship or job in investment banking or accounting, the key is starting your research and preparation early. As you could easily discover through basic research on the internet, finance recruiting takes place much earlier than almost all other industries, including but not limited to: technology, education, nonprofit, government, advertising, and marketing.
Hiring and recruiting for finance internships/jobs is carried out during the fall semester. Depending on the area within finance that you’re interested in, whether it be wealth management, investment banking, accounting, etc., the timeline, days in the hiring cycle, and traditional path to securing an internship may vary.
For instance, the recruitment timeline for those interested in securing a junior year internship or full-time position with an accounting firm should seek externships in this area of the industry (note: each of the Big Four recruit on Bucknell’s campus) during the summer after his/her sophomore year. Interviews for these externships will take place early spring semester of sophomore year. The externship is traditionally two to three days long, where students will both interview for a junior internship as well as learn more about the career opportunities with and culture of the firm. If you, for whatever reason, don’t complete an externship, do not fret. There will still be opportunities to interview with accounting firms at the start of your junior year. Nevertheless, it is important to keep in mind that recruiting in the fall may be slightly more competitive given that many students have already secured the junior internship through an externship.
Recruiting for most other areas within finance, like asset and wealth management as examples, will take place at the start of your junior and senior fall semesters, with offers being extended around the first week of November (though, keep in mind this is subject to change—it is also possible that you receive an offer sooner/later than this date).
While there may be slight variations in the length of the hiring cycle and timing of offers, it is most important that you are aware that finance recruiting starts earlier than that of other industries. Consequently, while your friends pursuing internships or full-time positions in technology, education, or marketing may not be seeking these positions yet, don’t get complacent. It is crucial that those who want to work in the finance industry start early.
- CDC Bonus Tip: The CDC offers a Finance specific career fair in New York City generally in late September/early October after the Employer Expo. This is a good opportunity to learn more and connect with alumni.
- CDC Bonus Tip: First Years and Sophomores should keep an eye out for our Finance Jump Start sessions. By taking one Saturday to participate in this day-long program, you will best prepare for and understand what critical next steps are ahead for your internship search between now and summer.