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The director of Wharton's MBA career office worked as a recruiter, so she understands what recruiters want and what her students need
Michelle Antonio has been the director for the Masters in Business Administration Career Management office for the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School since August 2006, heading a staff of 20 full-time employees (href="bschools/06/full_time_profiles/wharton1.htm). The approximately 800 students in the class of 2006 received median total compensation of $137,500, with a median base salary of $100,000. In addition, 93% of Wharton grads also received or accepted offers within three months of graduation.
While the most popular industries for Wharton grads remain consulting (28%) , investment banking (27%), and private equity/venture capital (7%), Antonio tells BusinessWeek.com reporter Janie Ho what changes she sees in student and recruiter interest this year, and how she plans to facilitate that. What follows are edited excerpts of their conversation:
How does your job as the former director of MBA recruiting at Deloitte Consulting for four years affect your job managing Penn"s Career Services department?
I have a sensitivity to both populations. I have a more balanced understanding of what recruiters face when recruiting on campus. I also make sure that the students shine through by doing their homework, knowing something about the interviewer, something that personalizes.
What was the most important thing that you sought as a recruiter? How do you instill that in Wharton students?
That cultural fit with the organization is the key element. A genuine passion and desire to work for the company makes the real difference—that goes beyond superficial "let me repeat back to you what I saw on your company Web site" responses.
At Wharton, I tell them that they must do some self-assessment and know why they're going to thrive in that environment. Know what they're looking for in an opportunity and be able to match that up with what they know about the company through doing their homework.
What are the top companies that recruit from Wharton? Is there an uptick in student interest in socially responsible jobs?
At least five of our students accepted full-time positions at McKinsey, Goldman Sachs (GS), Bain & Co., The Boston Consulting Group, Morgan Stanley (MS), Citigroup (C), Microsoft (MSFT), Medtronic, Google (GOOG), and Fidelity Investments.
Socially responsible club presidents said that membership has increased over past several years. Two programs that show the interest of our students are the Wharton Community Consultants, which provides advising to nonprofit and community organizations throughout Philadelphia, and the Wharton International Volunteer Program, where students work as consultants for NGOs.
What nontraditional sectors, like real estate, are you looking to lure to Penn?
We're always looking to broaden the portfolio, so we definitely continue to...
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