No Rest for Recession-Weary MBA Programs

Posted by: Louis Lavelle on February 6, 2009

By Anne VanderMey

A dismal job market with no end in sight is forcing career services departments at MBA programs to shift into overdrive. Between seminars on interviewing and workshops on perfecting the recession-era résumé, schools are squeezing in an accelerated schedule of lectures on the employment outlook and proactive support groups for the jobless.

Here are just a few: At the MIT Sloan School of Management, they’re bringing out seminars and career events that haven’t been seen since the 2001 downturn. At the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, MBAs who haven’t found work yet meet in small groups to trade tips and leads. And at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, Director of Career Management Roxanne Hori has started an internal blog to give students up-to-the minute news from recruiters.

One of the most creative fixes comes from the UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, which is offering video clips of students to potential employers as a resume-supplement and interview-preview. The service is provided through Revolution Careers, a company founded in 2007 by Anderson alumni.

Although they’re designed to give graduates an edge in the downturn, there’s no guarantee that emergency job search measures will die out when the country’s employment numbers are back to normal. Even if financial crisis has a short-lived impact on MBA job opportunities, it might have a long-term effect on how they pursue them.

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