In Search of the Best Chicago Internships for MBAs

Internship Program

Chicago is an ideal place to earn an MBA. In addition to having some of the strongest business schools in the country, the Chicago area is home to nearly 40 of the Fortune 500 companies. The bustling metro is also the financial and cultural hub of the Midwest, making it an ideal place for major corporations to set up large outposts. This means a wealth of internship program opportunities for MBAs at the start of their careers. So, for those with the gusto to live in the gustiest metro, the rewards can be huge. Below, we’ve laid out at which companies Chicago MBAs most often seek internships with.

Given Amazon’s involvement in nearly every industry, it is no surprise that the company is on the hunt for innovative MBAs to help maintain its dominance and status as the world’s greatest internet retailer. The mammoth corporation assigns interns a project for which they will partner with clients to glean true insight into the inner-workings of the company.

According to the Wall Street Journal, “Amazon took in more interns from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business than either Bain & Co. or McKinsey & Co., which were until recently the school’s top hirers of interns …” Amazon also offers many interns the opportunity to come back to work at the company full-time.

Just last year, Amazon was a major player in hiring Chicago Booth School of Business MBA graduates and interns. Twenty-six graduates managed to earn a full-time job with the company, while an impressive 33 interns joined its ranks, which was the single highest total among all companies that employed Booth interns.

The companyalso brought in students from nearby Indiana. Several Class of 2018 MBA students from the Notre Dame University Mendoza College of Business earned vital internship program experience at Amazon, which often leads to direct hiring.

Many of the companies hiring MBA interns offer exposure to retail, tech, and financial services, or consulting. But Abbott Laboratories, headquartered in Lake Bluff, Illinois, is a popular internship destination for MBAs interested in pursuing a career in pharmaceuticals. The Commercial MBA Internship allows interns to get their foot in the door of this massive and growing industry.

Several MBAs at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University joined Abbot Laboratories, according to the school’s most recent employment report, joined the company’s summer internship program.

Deloitte, which has a Chicago office located right near the iconic Willis Tower, employs 40,000 people in the U.S. The company’s Client Service Internship can take place throughout the course of a semester or over two months during the summer. Consulting tends to be a popular area of focus for MBA grads, but Deloitte also offers a plethora of opportunities for advanced degree students interested in financial sectors such as auditing and tax. Depending on their interests and professional backgrounds, interns can join a client service team in Deloitte & Touch LLP, Deloitte Tax LLP, Deloitte Risk and Financial Advisory, or Deloitte Consulting LLP. According to The Balance, summer interns at Deloitte can make anywhere from $3,850-$12,000 per month. Deloitte also made Fortune’s list of “25 Top MBA Employers.”

Around 50 percent of McKinsey & Company’s incoming hires have MBA degrees, so business school recruiting is a high priority for the mega firm. The consulting giant—which now has over 120 offices worldwide—was actually founded in Chicago in the 1920s, so it makes sense that the company is one of Chicago metro’s most active MBA recruiters. Though gaining entry to the elite consulting firm is extremely competitive, both University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Business have been able to claim the company as one of the top places their MBA students land for internships and full-time employment after graduation.

In fact, no company hired more Booth grads than McKinsey and Co. The company managed to snag a staggering 48 employees from the business school last year, which accounted for nearly 10 percent of the entire Booth MBA Class of 2017. Not so surprisingly, McKinsey also brought in 26 Booth interns within the same year—the second most among any employers in that time frame.

So, what should an MBA at in the McKinsey internship program expect? According to the firm’s website, MBA interns “… join us as associates, working either as generalists or practice consultants if they have and area they’d like to focus on.”


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