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Ask the MBA Recruiter

Gabrielle, an MBA recruiter in New York, discusses career opportunities for MBAs at Goldman Sachs and gives advice on the recruitment process.

What are your responsibilities as an MBA recruiter?

As a member of our University Relations team specializing in recruiting MBAs I work closely with Investment Bankers, Private Wealth Advisors, our recruiting team, and our partners at universities to identify and cultivate talent at top MBA schools. I then work to connect students with professionals from the areas that interest them while ensuring they are getting good exposure to the culture of the firm and the work they could potentially be doing.

What campuses does Goldman Sachs recruit on and what if I am studying somewhere else?

We recruit at more than 75 campuses around the world. Most are located in the US and the UK but we also recruit on a number of campuses across Europe and Asia including INSEAD in France and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. However, the recruiting process is open to candidates from all schools and regions. If we aren’t coming to your campus, simply apply via our website. You can also leverage your school’s network to seek out alumni that currently work at Goldman Sachs; many of our employees are eager to serve as a resource to fellow graduates.

Wherever you are studying, keep in mind that we love to see MBAs thinking beyond New York because we hire MBAs in multiple US offices in addition to offices in South America, Asia and Europe.

What career opportunities are there for MBA students at Goldman Sachs?

You’ll find MBAs throughout the firm. A substantial number of MBAs start at Goldman Sachs in Investment Banking or Private Wealth Management but there are also opportunities in Asset Management, Finance, Global Investment Research, Merchant Banking and Securities.

What tips do you have for MBA students going into the interview process?

No matter what the position is at Goldman Sachs, we look for highly motivated leaders with talents for working collaboratively and problem solving that have a strong sense of ethics. Going into the interview, MBA students should look to their previous work experience as well as their MBA programs for specific examples that demonstrate these traits.

For candidates who did not work in finance prior to beginning their MBA program, is there more specific advice to keep in mind?

Most of the MBAs who work here have made a shift in their career paths and we appreciate the unique perspectives they bring from those earlier experiences.

That being said, there are a few key things we look for in these cases. First, candidates should be prepared to discuss how the skills developed in their previous career lend themselves to the role they are currently pursuing and have a well-articulated response to why they want to change career paths and join Goldman Sachs. We also look for a genuine interest in our industry. An awareness of current events and how they impact our firm is a great way to demonstrate this so we encourage you to read the newspaper each day.

Every MBA program is structured differently but, if elective courses in finance and investing were available to you, we like to see that you have taken advantage of that opportunity to familiarize yourself with the technical side of our work. Students may also be able to build on their financial acumen by participating in case competitions and classes on campus with outside companies – just check what’s available at your school.

What type of training and on-boarding do you offer?

At Goldman Sachs, training and supporting our people is a focus for all hires. Our new employees start off with an orientation that allows them to learn about the culture of the firm and meet senior leaders followed by several weeks of training on subjects including accounting, financial modeling, presentation skills and more.

From there, we offer continuing opportunities to learn throughout your career including mentorship, in-person and online seminars from our GS University team and Talks@GS. Training the next generations of leaders is also vital to the success of our firm. Our leadership development group, Pine Street, offers customized leadership coaching once our people advance to the MD level.

Do you also consider part-time/executive MBAs and those in other types of graduate programs?

Campus recruiting for our associate positions is open to full-time, part-time and executive MBA students and we assess all applicants in exactly the same way.

While we focus on MBAs, we highly encourage students of other graduate programs to apply and engage in our recruiting process. Generally, law students gravitate to roles in Legal and Compliance, Private Wealth Management and Investment Banking; Public Policy grad students gravitate towards Private Wealth Management and Investment Banking; and we have a number of PhDs in Global Investment Research and Engineering. There are no hard and fast rules about which degrees qualify you to work in which areas and part of my job is to make sure we are steering candidates to where they can be the best fit at the firm. Talk to your university’s careers office and we will work together to guide you.

What is the recruiting process for MBAs? What is the timeline?

MBA programs have policies that dictate when recruiting and interviewing can begin. These policies are put in place to give students the time to acclimate to a new learning environment, focus on academics and meeting classmates, and explore all career options. You should familiarize yourself with your program’s specific policies.

Recruiting typically begins in the fall of the first year of business school, with interviews taking place over the winter. Most firms across Wall Street recruit summer associates for an internship between MBA students’ first and second year of school, and from there extend full-time offers for when the students complete their second year.

To learn more, please watch our Google+ Hangout featuring Goldman Sachs employees, Pierre, Nathan and Sabrina as they discuss their MBA experience.

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