The key to scoring your dream Wall Street internship

Skeleton key
There’s one method students use to score their dream internships: loading up on existing offers and using them as leverage. Shutterstock

Wall Street recruiting season is in full swing.

Students should have begun perfecting their résumés for investment bank recruiters in September. In October, they will have kicked off interviews and info sessions.

Now, it’s interview — and offer — time.

If you’re lucky, you might get more than one offer. But how do you land the one you really want — your dream internship offer?

And if you do get multiple offers, how do you choose which one to take?

Business Insider spoke to a few recent Wall Street interns about their strategies.

It starts with leverage.

One recent summer analyst, who asked to remain anonymous, described how she managed to turn a consulting offer into an internship with a competitive team at a bulge bracket bank.

In her sophomore year summer, the analyst scored a Deloitte internship for the following summer. But she knew she really wanted to get into banking, so she used that offer, which had a November deadline, to get an accelerated offer with a small investment bank in Baltimore, where she was from.

Having scored that internship, she decided to push a little further.

“I was like, ‘Wait, I was raised in Baltimore and I’ve been here forever. I kind of want to try going to New York.'”

So she started networking with all the alumni she knew at bulge bracket banks, using her current offer as a talking point.

One offered her a “super day” — an important step in the application process that usually follows a first-round interview. During a “super day” students are invited to a bank’s headquarters for a full day of back-to-back interviews with different vice presidents and managing directors.

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The summer analyst got an offer following that super day with only two weeks to respond — one of which was a holiday.

She used the offer to score interviews and super days at a handful of other firms in that time. But in the end, she wound up taking the original bulge bracket bank offer.

It’s all about that first offer.

That summer analyst’s story is not uncommon.

For many Wall Street interns, getting an offer fast from a top firm is key, regardless of which bank it is with.

Here’s how one Deutsche Bank intern put it:

“There’s the upper echelon … the bulge bracket banks, but outside of those, they’re all very similar,” he said. “Deutsche was just kind of one of the ones I got into early.”

He said the bank “hooked” him in with an early interview and offer and only gave him one week to decide.

The first intern described the whole process of using one offer as leverage for another like “a snowball effect” that allows you to land one interview after another. But ultimately, she said, there’s only one end goal for young Wall Street hopefuls:

“They want that offer as soon as possible.”

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