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Applying for an internship instead of permanent position?

Anonymous A asked on Mar 15, 2019 - 4 answers


I have recently finished my studies and would like to become a consultant. Unfortunately I haven't done any internships throughout my university studies or gained any other work experience. Is it advisable/possible to apply to MBB/Tier2 firms for an internship first (instead of a permant position as a consultant) in order to gain some experience/have a chance of being hired at the end of the internship?

Thanks in advance!

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Francesco replied on Mar 15, 2019
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Hi Anonymous,

the answer depends on the country, as not in all countries internships are possible after graduation.

In general applying for an internship should increase the chances for an invitation given your lack of experience. In many countries, though, not having other internships may put you at a disadvantage even for an internship compared to other candidates, which often have banking, tech or other consulting experience. I would thus recommend to:

  • Keep options broad in terms of the applications – try to target at least 6-7 firms
  • Apply via referrals – you can find more about referrals at the following link:

Hope this helps,


B replied on Mar 18, 2019
McKinsey cases only

I believe so yes. When you apply for a full time position, you are competing with individuals who have done internships in top firms and have an advantage over you. It's better to do an internship first, then apply for full-time positions to have a better chance of being accepted

replied on Mar 16, 2019
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Hi A,

It depends on your educational level and your CV as well. Although you may don't have work experience, you probably had some projects during your studies. If you have tangible results, put them down as a work expeience.

On the one hand, if you finished your bachelor recently, then the best strategy is to gain some work experience before you get into BIG3, because interns have at least 6m work experience in general.

On the other hand, if you completed your master, then you should apply directly for internship.

All the best,


Is it advisable to put college projects on the cv? it's not exactly tangible like an internship's projects right? — B on Mar 19, 2019

Vlad replied on Mar 15, 2019
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I'm afraid since you have no other work experience - that might be the only option. However, you should apply to many companies to increase your chances of being invited.