June 26, 2024 | Admissions & Programs Team


The following blog post is part two of a Q&A with Katie Mulheron, director and Business Analytics career consultant for Simon’s Jay S. and Jeanne Benet Career Management Center. She shares her insight on resources the Benet Center offers to MS students, the partnership between the Benet Center and the students, and more!

Admissions & Programs: This one feels a little program specific, but Wall Street Prep is a popular tool among our MS in Finance students. What benefits does that have for our students? 

Katie Mulheron: Wall Street Prep is a resource that is provided to our students, and it even offers lifetime access, which is a big perk to most. This is a resource that’s available on-demand to students that gives students access to foundational finance and modeling courses. For example, a student may have an interest in learning more about Excel, and there is a series of articles or lessons available to complete. Other popular topics accessed by students include analyzing financial reports, DCF modeling, and the ultimate guide to technical finance interviews. In addition, we occasionally offer boot camp-style workshops, which are instructor led throughout the year and may be a half or full day. These are typically geared toward MSF or MBA students with a concentration in finance given the highly technical components to them.

A&P: Can you describe the partnership between the Benet Center and the students? What differences might students find between our Center and Career Services Offices in their home country?

KM: I do think it’s important that students and new arrivals understand the expectations of a particular industry or role. Some students come to Simon with clearly defined goals of working at a specific firm or in a specific function and are curious as to how the Benet Center can help them. Others come to Simon and want to understand options available to them. It’s important to understand that it’s a shared responsibility. It's a partnership. We will play a role in your journey and you will play a role in your journey. That’s a message we share at Orientation as well. The Benet Center is not a placement service, which differs from countries like India, where that is very common. Some countries have a hiring system that hinges more on a candidate having the highest GPA, which is not how it works in the US, so it’s important to understand that effort and time goes into recruiting. The Benet Center will absolutely support you and partner with you in that process every step of the way. 
I’m always impressed by the range of employers who hire our MS students and the types of roles that our MS students across all programs secure. Every year students use the tools, resources, and the skills that we've developed together throughout the program to find roles through common job postings. I always also encourage students to understand and consider not only their first destination but other options as well. For instance, if someone says, “I want investment banking,” and they don’t get into investment banking initially, that doesn’t mean it’s a failure. We’d want to understand other options available to build that same skill set that could help the student advance in a year or two. Your career is a journey and each stop along the way is meaningful!

A&P: We receive many questions from prospective MS students about the internship track. What are some factors students should consider when trying to make that decision? 

KM: One flexible feature of Simon’s four full-time MS programs is the ability to choose your track: you can complete the program in two semesters, or you can opt for the internship track, which extends the program by an additional semester to allow for a summer internship. As with every decision, there are pros and cons. It’s important for students to be aware that internships are competitive and require the same type of focused recruiting as landing a full-time role. Typically, there are fewer summer internship offers on the market than full-time roles, but the Benet Center will be right here with you to partner in your search. Internships are a great learning tool for those looking to build up experience—particularly US work experience—and for those who are making more of a pivot or still deciding what they’d like to do post-graduation. 
One nice thing about choosing the internship track is that an internship is not required. Students can use the summer to study for certification exams (CPA, CFA, etc.) or pivot to searching for a full-time role. The last semester of the program for internship track students is designed to accommodate part-time or full-time work alongside coursework—and is also able to be completed remotely aside from the final class and exam—so a fall internship is also a possibility to consider. Students on the internship track have been successful through various pathways, so we like to share examples with students so they can see there are several ways to ultimately land the outcome they are looking for.

A&P: As a final takeaway, what’s one important thing you’d like MS students to know?

KM: My personal coaching style is that I’m here to help you build skills for your career not just something right now. Initially, our partnership may feel transactional. You may come in and need to work on your résumé or write a cover letter. Those are staples and are important, but I also want you to have lifelong skills. I want you to be able to understand how to negotiate with your boss—you can learn some of those practices through negotiation strategies when you have an offer. I want you to be able to understand the risk of a decision that you have to make that might feel fairly difficult. How do I decide who I'm going to spend time researching or engaging with for a particular employer or if I have multiple offers and they're competing? How do I make the right choice for me? What does it mean to have a good conversation with my supervisor when I start a 1:1 with them? What questions should I ask if I go on an internship or as I start as a full-time employee? I want you to have skills for a lifetime. I don't want you to think “the Benet Center is here to write my résumé.” We're going to draw those stories out—what do you want visible to an employer? How are you going to carry that through throughout the entire journey? I want you to think bigger. How are you going to take the things you learned at Simon and in the Benet Center—in the classroom, in club involvement that you have, or the things that you learn in a professional setting from us—how do you take those and how do you apply it moving forward? That’s my main goal when working with students. 

If you're interested in one of Simon's full-time specialized master's programs (Accountancy, Business Analytics, Finance, or Marketing Analytics), we have rolling admissions for those programs through July 19. It's not too late to begin your MS degree at Simon in 2024—apply now!

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