Which experience? Paid parliament internship, unpaid IB internship, or paid debt collection gig?

Hi guys,

I'm from Greece and I am already applying for several Masters in Economics and Masters in Finance programmes in Western European unis (already applied for FSFM's MIF and I will apply for the Master in Economics at HSG, Mannheim, and Bonn, the Master in Management and Technology at TUM (which has a double degree programme with HEC), as well as the Master in Finance, Economics, and Data Science at Ecole Polytechnique and Master in International Management and Sustainability at SciencesPo (I chose all these programmes because they don't need the GMAT and I have very little appetite to resit it). But as I now have a gap year - and a budget way too limited to do internships abroad - and have been unemployed since my discharge from the Greek Army on October 16, I have three opportunities.

One is an offer at the German Bundestag, under the International Parliamentary Scholarship. I will basically work at a German parliamentarian's office and interact with his/her constituents. Paid tickets to and from Berlin, paid accommodation, full insurance, and a 500 Euro monthly stipend. Not too relevant for my eventual goals (working in finance, M&A specifically). It runs from March to July 2019.

Another is an IB internship at a boutique here in Athens. The internship's for 3 months and it's unpaid. Considering that I am cash-strapped I am not sure whether the most relevant to my goals opportunity is actually worth it financially, because, since it runs from January to March 2019, what will I do from April onwards?

Then there is another option. A full-time job at a company under contract by a major Greek bank to collect debt. Basically you sit on a phone and call debtors for debt restructuring offers. They teach you the legislation and the bank's policies and you call debtors who can't pay. It's the best paid offer of the above, with 800 euros per month before taxes and insurance - worth it, since I live with my parents. I can work for two months at them and then sail for Deutschland, but I am not sure how bad two months of work would look on the resume.

Greece's economy has gone to shit. That much is known, hence next year I will do my Masters abroad, no matter what. What matters is what would be most relevant to my goal. My main goal is to place in Frankfurt or Zurich (German-speaking - the French programmes I will apply to are also quite interesting in content). Considering that I speak fluent German and this year I am going for the C2, I believe I won't have a problem with the language.

What do you guys think?

Comments (13)

Dec 10, 2018 - 11:50am

I would advise to take the unpaid IB internship (as it is relevant to the eventual goals you mentioned), or the debt collector. I would disregard the latter if you are not really in need of extra cash.

Dec 10, 2018 - 1:36pm

Looking at the dates you've mentioned, couldn't you just do the IB Internship from Jan-Mar 2019, and then do the Paid Parliament Internship Mar-Jul 2019?
That way you could do 2/3....

thots & prayers

Jan 11, 2021 - 8:22pm

Yeah I'm sure that's what he thought to do, 2 years ago

Quant (ˈkwänt) n: An expert, someone who knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing.

  • 1
Jan 20, 2021 - 1:17pm

I eventually went to Germany. While I later returned to Greece, that internship helped me get a German government scholarship, which helped me afford a Master at a German university where I am studying now. It's funny how two years can fly by and things change so radically. 2020 was not a shitty year for me at all. So I am eternally grateful to have been granted the opportunity to GTFO of Greece. 

Jan 11, 2021 - 8:12pm

I would advise you to take a free internship, as it would better reflect on your resume. The last option in the form of working as a collector does not really appeal to me, because it is morally very hard work. Conversations on the phone with debtors are not so cheerful and cheerful, you will be sent and cursed. For 800 euros a month, you will kill your nervous system and learn a lot of new swear words that you did not know before. It's a perpetual trial, I'd think very well if I were you.


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