Around 25% of students at Oxford and Cambridge and 13% of students at INSEAD come from North America. Many of them are curious about the job prospects of the one-year MBA program.
Many American companies set their recruitment schedules according to the American university calendar. The MBA programs at Oxford and Cambridge have an extended school year, running from September until July and therefore, there may be clashes with the start date of a new internship or job. It is also worth noting that the MBA is more embedded in the American corporate culture, which means two things. The first is that there are more MBA-entry tracks in these companies. The second is that some companies do the majority of their recruiting from a set of target schools.
However, one-year MBA programs are climbing in the global MBA rankings released by Financial Times and this is positively correlated with the job market success for students of these schools. The following are a few examples that show the successes of the one-year MBA program.
Amazon is a large recruiter from Oxford and Cambridge, having hired more than 10 students from each program for full-time positions. The firm also hired a significant number for their internship programs. Other tech firms such as Microsoft, Google, and Uber are also consistent employers. Another large channel for recruiting is with the top consulting firms. McKinsey, Deloitte, BCG, A.T Kearney and others regularly hire from one-year MBA programs.
I spoke with a current MBA student at Cambridge who went through the recruitment process with McKinsey. When she visited their London office for interviews, the recruiter told her that in the past they would add Cambridge students on to LBS interview days because there were only a few students that they were considering. In more recent years, Cambridge students have devoted interview days just for their school, a great sign that this specific firm was taking the one-year MBA program more seriously.
Another interesting anecdote that I heard was from a Cambridge student interested in banking. He interviewed with a Tier 1 American investment bank in their London office. The interview was for a Summer Associate role in the M&A division. The candidates were from different MBA programs, both from the US and the UK. This meant that candidates from the one-year MBA would graduating that summer while the students in the US would have another full year after the summer internship.
He asked the recruiter how that bank accommodates one-year MBA students if they were to receive a full-time offer. The recruiter told him that if a candidate from a one-year MBA receives an offer at the end of the internship, they ask her or him to start the following January. This is overall manageable as students usually want to take some time off to travel or settle down in a new city before they start. More interestingly, the recruiter also commented that “we used to not accept students from one-year MBA programs. But two years ago, we changed this after realizing that all of our competitors are hiring from these programs’’.
These examples show a clear trend that one-year MBA programs are gaining traction.
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