After graduation, I will be working for Accenture PLC in their Chicago office. Knowing this going into senior year gave me a pretty nice feeling, as I could relax and not stress about applications and interviews for my final year at ND. I remember that some people I knew were flying all over the country for interviews, but luckily for me, Accenture had come to campus in the spring semester of my junior year for internship interviews (many large firms and companies that recruit heavily from Notre Dame hold interviews in the Center for Career Development on campus). After completing my summer internship, my offer was extended to a full time position, no further interviewing required.
As an Information Technology Management (ITM) major in the Mendoza College of Business, I was pretty set on consulting, and specifically, I wanted to stay in the technology space. Since Accenture is a global tech consulting firm, this was my first choice for landing an internship. For me, I wanted to be in a large global firm that had clients from every industry so I had the flexibility to move from different types of work as well as different locations if need be. In addition, I knew that Accenture was a highly regarded consulting firm and that it is consistently in the Chicago Tribune’s Top Workplaces.
I only applied to one company for my internship, but this is a rarity, and probably not recommended. My friends applied to multiple companies, went on multiple interviews, and even got to visit different offices to get a feel for what was best for them. Also, if any one company had turned them down, they still had other available offers.
While I wouldn’t suggest putting all your eggs in one basket as I did, I would still recommend focusing heavily on your top 1 or 2 choices. This means making early connections with that company in whichever way you can (i.e. contacts at career fairs, contacts through personal/academic/work networks, etc.), researching the company (mission statements, achievements, current news, etc), and following up with your interviewer(s). For my position, and for most others, I sent my application through GoIrish, which is the Center for Career Development's primary recruiting database. Before this, though, I had attended the Internship Fair and the ITM Fair held on campus, where both times I spoke with Accenture representitives and kept in contact. I think my early and heavy interest in Accenture showed in my interviews and communications, and definitely helped in landing the internship.
In addition, I also chose to pursue a company/position where I believed my skills, interests, and experiences would make me their ideal candidate. Not only did this help in the interviewing process, but also helped me to be successful and engaged in my internship itself. I’m looking forward to my full time experience – not only for the work I can contribute, but also for the challenge of learning, growing, and constantly working with a variety of different technologies and people.