Summer internship choices to achieve Target Master program (Europe)

Dear WSO visitors,

I have recently come into a spot where I have to make a tough decision. Allow me to describe my situation:

I am currently a 20-year-old Bachelor student in the Netherlands. I go to a non-target university without any prospect of BB IB or MM PE. I am finishing my 6 month internship period (this is in my bachelor curriculum) at a very small investment boutique (4 employee's). The employees are very satisfied with my results and my boss offered me a summer Job. I will receive a decent compensation.

During my internship, I have also come in contact with a local Private equity (80 employees). This is an organisation that functions as a for-profit investment fund but receives funding from the government. I am quite close to receiving a summer internship offer. Unfortunately, the compensation will be at least 2000 euros less over the period compared to my current offer.

I apparently also have a very close connection to small local M&A firm(15 employees). I am quite certain I will be able to achieve a summer internship location here too. I also assume compensation will be at least 2000 euros less over the summer period compared to my current offer.

After the summer period, I will go Asia to study there for 6 month's, this requires a certain level of funding to live comfortably. The added 2000 euros might prevent me from taking a loan from the nice Dutch government (0% interest).

My overall fear is that by accepting my current offer I will not have sufficient, diverse or interesting work experience to be accepted to a "target" master. (Think of Bocconi, LSE, RSM, IE, HEC etc)

So my question is. What would you guys recommend me to do? Will the experience from my current offer be sufficient to get accepted into these elite programs? Will it be beneficial to accept the other offer, if so which offer would be most interesting? Since all companies are relatively small and unknown in an international atmosphere, will it even matter which choice I make?

Sorry for the long post, good advice will be very much appreciated.

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Comments (4)

Jun 8, 2017


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Jun 8, 2017

Can you afford doing the fanciest of those things and then go to a target school with their tuition fees+living costs? If the answer is yes then go for it. People in Admissions love diverse experiences , intercultural jobs and stuff.
If the answer is no, then again you don't have an option so stay where you are or go to the less costly alternative. While these experiences are valuable admissions are mostly about selling yourself right. I got into a EU target school so if you want to discuss more PM me.

    • 1
Jun 8, 2017

Experience matters for masters' application but definitely not as much as GMAT. If you have a good score, some relevant experience in your field (bear in mind that some applicants don't have any previous experience for those pre-experience masters) and some international/extracurricular bullet points on your CV, you will be fine. Choosing your current offer will not penalize you at all.

My main concern would rather be which of the potential offers would help you the most to land your dream job after your master. If I were you, I would try to get definitive offers from all the places you mentioned and pick the most visible job (prestige, international, FO responsibilities) in order to maximize my chances for my future applications. I would not worry about 2000 EUR for a summer internship. Early on in your career, money should not be the end goal. As you said, a student loan is very common and rates are low. Job market in the NL is quite good, so go for it.

Jun 9, 2017