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Investment Banking Internship Programs

A guide to IB internships

Overview investment banking internship programs

Most banks offer investment banking internship programs each year and hire a number of Summer Analysts and Associates to work for 9-12 weeks in their offices.  These programs are great for both parties: the interns get phenomenal experience and get to see what its like to work at the firm, and the banks get to see the interns skills, work ethic, and personality fit first hand before deciding if they want to hire them fulltime.  More: read an investment banking job description.

Interns get to learn first hand the skills required for investment banking by working with a product group or industry group and supporting real transactions and deals the bank is working on.  Granted, the work will be at a very entry level, but the deals themselves can be very high profile.


investment banking internship coffee
It’s not only just getting coffees!


Timing and application process

The majority of investment banking internship programs are over the Summer, however, there can also be co-op internship in the Fall, Winter, and Spring.  Unless your university has a co-op program or rotating academic cycle (like Dartmouth College), you’ll be going for the Summer program.

A typical timeline is as follows:

  1. September – internships posted
  2. October/November – interviews conducted and offers made
  3. May/June – internships begin (average length is about 10 weeks)


Goldman Sachs CEO advice for summer interns

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein offered some advice to summer interns at GS in the below YouTube video.  In the interview, Blankfein describes his personal career path, starting out as a lawyer before moving into investment banking.

Some of his best advice is to have a wide range of personal interests and gather diverse experiences that make you an interesting person to be around.

Additionally, he encourages ambitions interns to be a little less anxious and makes an analogy to the game of golf.  He explains that if you grip the club too tight, the ball won’t go as far or as straight.  Loosen up a bit on your grip and you’ll be amazed at the improvement!


The video is 41 minutes, and CFI highly recommends watching it!


Internships are critical for full-time offers

The main reason getting an investment banking internship is so important is because a large percentage of all full-time offers go to interns who are hired back.  The bottom line is, if you don’t get a job at a bank or some other relevant position over the Summer, your chances of getting a full-time offer when you graduate are definitely lower.

There are things you can do to help the situation!  The first is, start applying for positions as early in your university career as possible.  Many companies will hire students in the summer after their first year.  Even if the job isn’t as high profile as working in IB, it can be used as a stepping stone next year, and the year after that as you build your way up.


Financial modeling skills

One of the best ways to boost your resume and standout is by having financial modeling and valuation skills on your resume.  CFI offers a wide range of courses, starting with the very basics of Excel and Accounting, working all the way up to DCF modeling and even an M&A financial model.  These courses will help prepare you for your investment banking internship by giving you the skills you need to hit the ground running.


investment banking M&A financial model

Source: CFI financial modeling courses.


More investment banking internship resources

Thank you for reading this guide to investment banking internship programs.  CFI’s mission is to help you advance your career and become a world-class financial analyst.  With that mission in mind, these additional resources will help you on your way:

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Advance your career in investment banking, private equity, FP&A, treasury, corporate development and other areas of corporate finance.

Get certified as a financial analyst with CFI’s FMVA Program.