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Grow Further.

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Table of Contents Welcome............................................................................................5

Interviews...................................................................................... 31

Welcome to OCS...........................................................................6

Ace the Interview.........................................................................32 Interviewing Tips.........................................................................33 Interviewing Types......................................................................34 Second and Final Round Interviews...........................................37 On-Campus Interviews...............................................................37 Using Crimson Careers...............................................................38

the job search............................................................................... 8 The Job Search...............................................................................9 Job Searching Is a Contact Sport................................................10 OCS Fall Programming...............................................................12 Are You Prepared for the Job Search in an Uncertain Economy?...................................................................16

On-Campus Interview Program 101..................................17 On-Campus Interviews...............................................................18 Summer Internships....................................................................19 OCI Registration.........................................................................22 Information for Study/Work Abroad Students..........................22 Using Crimson Careers...............................................................23 Common Application Questions or Mistakes...........................24

resumes & cover letters.........................................................25 Create a Strong Resume..............................................................26 Sample Resume............................................................................27 Write an Effective Cover Letter...................................................28 Cover Letters and Crimson Careers...........................................28 Sample Cover Letter....................................................................29 Get Resume and Cover Letter Help at OCS...............................30 150 Sample Action Words...........................................................30


offers...............................................................................................40 Offers............................................................................................41 Once You Make a Decision.........................................................42 What To Do .................................................................................43 On Campus Interview Offers......................................................45

Industry Profiles.......................................................................47 Consulting...................................................................................53 Corporate Strategy......................................................................51 Education.....................................................................................59 Entrepreneurship.........................................................................60 Entertainment..............................................................................56 Non-Profit Consulting................................................................57 Public Service...............................................................................55 Retail Merchandisng....................................................................49 Technology...................................................................................61


HARVARD U niversity

The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search, 16th Edition PUBLISHERS Martin C. Ye ’12 and Deb Carroll THE HARVARD CRIMSON, INC. Business Manager Martin C. Ye ’12 Advertising Sales James E. Holt II ’14 Sandesh K. Kataria ’14 Martin C. Ye ’12 Andrew G. Walsh ’14 Design Xi Yu ’13 President Naveen N. Srivatsa ’12 HARVARD OFFICE OF CAREER SERVICES Deb Carroll Bob Cohen Robin Mount Nancy Saunders Copyright 2011, The Harvard Crimson, Inc. All rights reserved by The Harvard Crimson, Inc. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the expressed, written permission of The Harvard Crimson, Inc. For advertising information, please call (617) 576-6600. For job search questions not answered, please call OCS at (617) 495-2595.



Welcome The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




Welcome to OCS Opportunities, connections, success Whether you have some specific goals in mind or have no idea what to do after Harvard, the Office of Career Services (OCS) is a valuable resource for any stage of your job, internship, fellowship, or graduate school search process. OCS can help you identify and explore options, help you build a professional network, focus your efforts, and maintain your motivation – all of which is important in a challenging economy. Think of yourself as an athlete in training. OCS can be your coach, but you still need to score the winning goal. One strategy that has stood the test of time is that “the early bird gets the worm.” Don’t wait until the last minute to begin to explore and plan for your next step. Let OCS help you find the right approach and guide you from start to finish.


Educate yourself about diverse careers options. • Senior Month at OCS—Don’t miss out on all the programming during September and beyond! • Select from over 75 diverse panels and workshops offered each semester. • Join the 2012 OCS class listserv to receive relevant updates about events!


Find people who can help you in your job search.


• Meet employers, Harvard alumni, and students with similar interests at numerous workshops, panels, and events hosted by OCS. • Alumni speakers and panels. • 20+ OCS career fairs and expos already scheduled for this year. • See the OCS Google Calendar for all the details!


Get personalized advice to help you get where you want to be! • OCS Drop-In Hours, Monday through Friday, 1-4 pm, for resume and cover letter reviews, quick questions, just getting started, or touching base. • Special extended Drop-Ins for seniors, 11 am - 1 pm until September 30th. • Special “Getting Started” advisors to help you take the first steps. • Half hour advising appointments with counselors covering a diverse range of career areas and career decision-making. • New this year, complete the Senior Check-In so that we can tailor services to your interests!

Be sure to stay connected with OCS through the OCS website, including the OCS Class List Servs and OCS Google Calendars, at We look forward to working with you this year! —The Office of Career Services Staff










Friday, Feb. 10

Friday, Feb. 10

Friday, April 13

Hot Opps Fair

Energy & Environment Expo

Thursday, Feb. 16

GSE PreK-12 Expo

Thursday, March 29

Extension School Spring Employer Networking Night

Humanitarian Activities Fair TBA


AMBLE Spring Career Conference TBA

Clinical Volunteer Opportunities Fair

Friday, Oct. 21

Advertising, Marketing, & Public Relations Expo



Thursday, April 5

GSE Social Impact Fair


All Ivy Environmental Career Fair


Undergraduate Law Internship & Career Fair

Monday, Dec. 5

Start-Up Career Fair

Thursday, Nov. 17

Thursday, Nov. 3

Summer Opportunities Fair

Human Rights Fair

Friday, Oct. 14

Thursday, Oct. 13

Thursday, Oct. 6

Global Health Fair

Job & Internship Fair

Virtual Grad School Fair

Friday, Sept. 9

On-Campus Interview Program Fair

Crimson Journalism Fair

Friday, Sept. 9

Study Abroad Fair



the job search The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




The Job Search Most students find the job or internship search process both exciting and stressful, since it is a time of exploring options but also a time of narrowing choices and decision-making. At OCS we appreciate this, and we are ready to help you through each step of the way. Before applying for specific opportunities, it is important to think about what you want to do next.

Explore options and discover which organizations, graduate schools, industries, and types of employers most closely match your interests, personality, skills, and offer you the best learning opportunities.

Learn about yourself and think about how you would like to participate in the world of not-for-profit, for-profit, and/or government work, now and in the future.

Think about other opportunities, such as international experiences, fellowships, or research positions, and determine which path is best for you at this point in time.

Stop by the Office of Career Services at 54 Dunster Street and let an advisor personally help you get focused and started on your search. • OCS Drop-in hours are 1 - 4pm Monday-Friday. • Extended Dro-Ins for seniors are 11am - 1pm August 31st - September 30. • Make a one-on-one appointment through Crimson Careers • Not sure where to start? Make an appointment to see one of OCS’s new “getting started” counselors. • Call 617-495-2595 or email for additional information.




insider tip: the entrepreneural job search

“You should approach career strategy the same way an entrepreneur approaches starting a business.” —LinkedIn Founder Reid Garrett Hoffman

In this current hiring climate, some of the characteristics of a successful job search are very similar to the components of launching a successful new business or venture. Both require taking initiative and being proactive, finding ways to stand out and differentiate yourself from the pack, being resilient and adaptable if your first plan doesn’t work, and making professional connections that will help you through each step of the process. It is not enough to hit the send button on several applications and then sit back expecting your Harvard credentials to do the work. The job search is a very active process that involves meeting and interacting with many professionals, which is why OCS often refers to the job search as a “contact sport.”

Searching for a Job Is a Contact Sport You have to talk to people in order to learn what is out there, to get up to speed on current issues in a particular field, and to determine which options are a good fit for you. “Building a Professional Network” means making contacts with people who can provide you with up-todate information and help you develop some “gravitational pull” from inside an organization, increasing your chances of being noticed and successful in your search. Especially in a sluggish economy, the connections you make building out your network can be crucial to finding and landing a great job or internship. Over 90% of job seekers land jobs or internships through this process of building professional connections. Take advantage of all the opportunities Harvard offers you, both on and off campus, in person and online, to speak with lots people about your interests.

Attend Professional Networking Workshops.

Attend Career Fairs and Expos.

Learn the skills that will help you succeed in broadening your connections. You are going to be networking throughout your professional career, including each time you want to change jobs, so make sure to learn and practice these skills before you leave campus. Networking workshops are among the “Nuts & Bolts” programming offered at OCS. Check the OCS Google Calendars for more details.

Speak informally with employers about jobs, internships, and career paths. Get contact information and stay in touch. Below are some of the key events already planned on campus for the 2011-2012 academic year. Be sure to check the OCS Google Calendars for any updates and changes.

Go To Events.

Harvard FAS On-Campus Interview Program Fair Friday, September 9th 1:30pm – 4:00pm @ the Sheraton Commander Hotel

This is a chance for you to: • Ask questions • Meet people face-to-face • Experience the culture of a company or organization • Learn about full-time and summer internship opportunities • Learn what is a good fit for you and what is not • Get application and interview tips • Demonstrate your interest, knowledge, and skills • Get contact information and stay in touch if interested

The Harvard Crimson/OCS Journalism & Media Fair Thursday, October 6th 3:00pm – 6:00pm @ the Harvard Crimson, 14 Plympton Street *NEW* Harvard Job & Internship Fair Friday, October 14th 1:30pm – 4:00pm @ the Sheraton Commander Hotel




Participate in Career Panels. OCS arranges many panels with diverse employers and organizations where alumni and other professionals talk about careers in areas such as non-profit management, fashion, sports, entertainment, global public health, human rights, international development and many other areas. Most organizations do not hire through an on-campus interview program, so use these opportunities to build your professional network and connections. Remember that speakers are always looking for new people who are passionate about what they do to join their organizations and become the next generation of leaders in their field.

Attend Employer Networking & Information Sessions. Over 75 organizations, mostly large employers who hire a lot of people at one time, come to campus between September and December looking specifically to meet Harvard students and to present information about their organizations. Make sure you check out the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendar for specific dates and times. You do not need to be registered with the On-Campus Interview Program to attend. Don’t be discouraged if the type of organization you would like to work for does not offer an employer session, as there are many other ways to get in front of potential employers. While these sessions can be great learning experiences, they are also a chance for you to stand out from the other candidates who will apply to these organizations. Take the opportunity to demonstrate your “soft skills,” including how well you interact and communicate with different kinds of people. If an employer sees that you handle yourself well in a professional social situation, it will help them remember you and pull your resume out from the pile of other candidates!

Career Fairs and Expos (cont’d) Harvard OCS Advertising, Marketing, and PR (AMP) Expo Friday, October 21st 2:00pm – 5:00pm @ the Office of Career Services Harvard OCS Global Health Fair Thursday, November 3rd 4:00pm – 6:00pm @ the Office of Career Services Harvard OCS Human Rights Fair Thursday, November 17th 3:00pm – 6:00pm @ the Office of Career Services Harvard OCS Summer Opportunities Fair Monday, December 5th 12:00 – 4:00pm @ The Gutman Conference Center & Radcliffe Gymnasium Harvard OCS Start-up Fair Friday, February 10th Check the OCS Google Calendars for more details Harvard OCS Energy, Environment, and Clean Tech Expo Friday, February 10th Check the OCS Google Calendars for more details Harvard GSE Pre-K-12 Teaching Expo Thursday, February 16th @ The Gutman Conference Center Harvard OCS Clinical Volunteer Opportunities Fair Friday, February 17th @ the Office of Career Services AMBLE/OCS Spring Career Conference: Marketing, Media, Fashion, and Entertainment February date TBA Check the OCS Google Calendars for more details Harvard GSE Social Impact Expo Thursday, April 5th @ The Gutman Conference Center Harvard OCS Hot Opps Career Fair Friday, April 13th @ the Office of Career Services




Undergraduate Programming

FALL 2011


Harvard University · Faculty of Arts and Sciences · 54 Dunster Street, Cambridge, MA

Learn More About… OCS Fall Programming Creative Arts: Film, Music, Dance, Photography, Theater, and Fashion Design

• That’s Entertainment! Exploring Careers in Film, Theater, Music, and Dance: Wed., Oct. 12, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room • Self-Promotion for Performing Artists: Wed., Oct. 26, 5:00-6:00pm, OCS Seminar Room

Entertainment Management: New Media, Television, Film, and Sports

• Harvard Alumnus Tom Strickler (Hollywood Agent to Charter School Founder): Fri., Sept. 30, 5:30-7:00pm, OCS Reading Room • Exploring Careers in Sports Administration: Thurs., Oct. 27, 7:00-8:30pm, Murr Center • How to Find Jobs and Internships in Entertainment: Thurs., Nov. 17, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room

Museums, Galleries, and Auction Houses

• Arts Fellows Program Information Session: Mon., Sept. 26, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Seminar Room • How to Find Jobs and Internships in Museums: Wed., Sept. 28, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room

Fiction and Non-fiction Publishing, Journalism, Writing, and Illustrating • • • •

The New Journalism: Finding Your Place in an Evolving Field: Wed., Sept. 21, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room Crimson Journalism Fair: Thurs., Oct. 6, 3:00-6:00pm, Harvard Crimson: 14 Plympton St. Writing the Query Letter: Thurs., Oct. 20, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Exploring Careers in Publishing: Thurs., Nov. 3, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room

Government, Politics, International Relations, and the Military • • • •

Working for the Federal Government: Exploring the U.S. Department of State: Mon., Sept. 26, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Conference Room Exploring Careers on Capitol Hill: Finding Work with Elected Officials: Thurs., Oct. 6, 5:30-6:30pm, OCS Reading Room Freshmen: Cupcakes and Careers in Government: Wed., Oct. 26, 7:00-8:30pm, OCS Reading Room Applying Your Harvard Education to a Military Career: Fri., Oct. 28, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Reading Room

International Development, Human Rights, Poverty Alleviation, and Global Health • • • • •

Exploring Careers in International Development: Tues., Sept. 13, 5:00-6:30pm, OCS Reading Room MCC International Development Internship Fair: Sun., Sept. 18, 12:00-3:00pm, Northwest Labs: 52 Oxford St. Finding and Funding Internships in Africa: Thurs., Oct. 27, 4:30-6:00pm, OCS Reading Room Global Health Fair: Thurs., Nov. 3, 4:00-6:00pm, OCS Human Rights Fair: Thurs., Nov. 17, 2:00-5:00pm, OCS


• How to Apply to Law School: Thurs., Sept. 15, 5:00-6:00pm, OCS Conference Room • Exploring Careers in Law and Law-related Areas (Alumni Panel): Thurs., Sept. 29, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room • To Be or Not to Be a Lawyer: Mon., Nov. 7, 5:30-6:30pm, OCS Conference Room

Education, Social Services (Psychology and Counseling), and the Ministry • • • •

Harvard Alumnus Tom Strickler (Hollywood Agent to Charter School Founder): Fri., Sept. 30, 5:30-7:00pm, OCS Reading Room Exploring Graduate School in Counseling, Social Work, and Psychology: Fri., Oct. 21, 4:00-5:30pm, OCS Conference Room Exploring Careers in Education: Tues., Nov. 15, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room How to Find Teaching Jobs Abroad—Summer or Full-time: Thurs., Nov. 17, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Conference Room

For the most up-to-date schedule and more information, visit

For the most up-to-date schedule and more information:

Updated: 08/16/11





Undergraduate Programming

FALL 2011


THE JOB SEARCH Harvard University · Faculty of Arts and Sciences · 54 Dunster Street, Cambridge, MA

Learn More About… Social Enterprise, Corporate Social Responsibility, Foundations, and Philanthropy • Exploring Careers in Social Enterprise, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Non-Profit Consulting: Mon., Oct. 24, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room

Science, Engineering, Biotech, Medical Devices, Electronic Gaming, and Technology • • • • • •

How to Find Jobs and Internships in Scientific and Technical Industries: Mon., Sept. 26, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room My Apollo Experience, with H. Stephen Schloss, ’74: Mon., Sept. 26, 5:30-6:30pm, OCS Reading Room Exploring Careers in Biotechnology and Medical Device Manufacturing: Mon., Oct. 3, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Exploring Careers in Science and Engineering: Beyond the Bench: Wed., Oct. 12, 4:00-5:30pm, Maxwell Dworkin 119 Graduate School in the Sciences and Engineering: Applying, Surviving, and Thriving: Wed., Oct. 26, 4:00-5:30pm, Maxwell Dworkin 119 Finding and Funding Summer Research in Engineering: Wed., Nov. 30, 4:00-5:00pm, Maxwell Dworkin 119

Environment, Sustainability, Global Food Production, and Energy

• How to Find Jobs and Internships in Energy, Environment, and Sustainability: Mon., Nov. 14, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room

Architecture, Urban Development, and Green Construction

• How to Find Jobs and Internships in Architecture, Green Construction, Urban Planning: Tues., Nov. 8, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room

Marketing, PR, Advertising, and Fashion/Retail • • • • •

Exploring Careers in Brand Management: Wed., Sept. 28, 6:00-7:00pm, OCS Reading Room Exploring Careers in Fashion and Retail: Tues., Oct. 18, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room “AMP” Up Your Resume: Wed., Oct. 19, 5:30-6:30pm, OCS Reading Room Advertising, Marketing, and PR Expo: Fri., Oct. 21, 2:00-5:00pm, OCS Advertising 101 with WPP: Thurs., Oct. 27, 5:30-6:30pm, OCS Conference Room

Consulting, Finance, Hedge Funds, Private Equity, Real Estate, and Venture Capital • • • • • • •

Case Interview Workshop with Marc Cosentino: Mon., Sept. 19, 8:00-10:00pm, Science Center A Exploring the Diversity of Careers in Finance: Tues., Sept. 20, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Exploring Careers in Consulting and Corporate Strategy: Tues., Sept. 27, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Nanocase for Undergrads and Grads: DiabetEAZE Case: Fri., Sept. 30, 6:00-9:00pm, OCS Banking and Consulting: Myths and Realities: Wed., Oct. 5, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Business School: Myths and Realities: Tues., Nov. 15, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room Banking and Consulting Internships: Myths and Realities: Tues., Nov. 29, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Conference Room


• Introducing the NEW Harvard Innovation Lab (i-Lab): Thurs., Sept. 15, 4:00-5:30pm, Science Center C • Harvard i-Lab Entrepreneurship 101: Sat., Oct. 15, 10:00am-12:30pm, Harvard i-Lab: 125 Western Ave., Boston

Hospitality, Travel, Culinary Arts, and Restaurants

• Exploring Careers in Food and Wine: Tues., Oct. 11, 4:00-5:00pm, OCS Reading Room • Exploring Careers in Travel and Hospitality: Tues., Oct. 25, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room • How to Find Jobs and Internships in Hospitality: Food, Wine, Hotels, and Travel: Mon., Nov. 14, 4:30-5:30pm, OCS Reading Room

ForCalendars the most schedule more information: Be sure to check the OCS Google for up-to-date updates, changes, and OCSand Spring Programming. Updated: 08/16/11


 OVER 13


Attend Special Employer Programs.

Research Employers and Industries

On-Campus Interview Boutique Nights – Learn about the opportunities at some of the smaller or niche employers in the On-Campus Interview Program. • Finance – Wednesday, September 7th, 4-6pm @ the Harvard Faculty Club • Consulting – Friday, September 16th, 4-6pm @ the Harvard Faculty Club Resume Clinics – A number of employers conduct fieldspecific resume review clinics in areas such as consulting, financial services and banking. See the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendars for dates and details. Interview Workshops – Many employers come to campus to present finance, marketing, and case interview workshops. These are excellent learning opportunities for students who think they may be interested in interviewing for these types of positions. Employer or Recruiter Office Hours – Held at OCS or the OCS Interview Facility, get recruiting, application, and interview questions answered. Bring your resume and/or cover letter and get employer feedback. See the OCS Employers on Campus Google Calendars for dates and details.

insider tip: professionalism

This will help you tailor your resumes and cover letters for greater success, prepare for interview questions, and ensure you are prepared to evaluate job and internship offers when you get them.

INSIDER TIP Year after year, OCS employers consistently rank employer research as the weakest element among Harvard candidates. For example, do you know the CEO of the company you are interviewing with? Can you talk about a recent article that mentioned the organization? Do your research and separate yourself from the pack!

Where to conduct research? • Employer websites • Search engines • OCS website, including access to: −− Crimson Careers −− Wetfeet −− Vault • Industry Publications, including:

−− The Wall Street Journal −− Business Week −− Fortune Magazine −− The Economist • OCS Reading Room and Library −− Vault and Wetfeet Guides −− Hoovers (Hollis)

“We want to see you be yourself, but we want to see you be your best self.” —Betsy Covitt, Credit Suisse

When going through the job or internship search, it is always important to present yourself as someone ready for employment and the responsibilities that go with it. Interactions with employers, though sometimes more casual than others, should always be professional. Be polite and engaged with everyone you encounter, even people who you don’t necessarily think will be part of the hiring decisions, like receptionists and wait staff at restaurants. Make sure to think beyond just face-to-face events, but consider all the ways you might communicate with an employer. • Email: Make your emails businesslike with proper grammar and punctuation. For example, a pet-peeve of many recruiters is when students begin an email with “Hey.” Also, don’t forget to revise your email signature to something appropriate for employer correspondence. • Telephone: Check your voicemail message and ring back tones, as employers will try to reach you by phone. Remember to return voicemails with a phone call – take the cue from the employer as to how they want to communicate with you. • Online: Edit what you have on Facebook and other social networking sites. What would happen if a recruiter Googled you? Also, be proactive about your online presence by setting up a LinkedIn account. Some things vary by industry and organization, such as dress code. This is why you should always do research online, make connections with alumni and other professionals in the field, and follow any formal instructions or informal cues given to you by an employer. When in doubt, always err on the formal side until you are sure.




Explore OCS Online Resources and Searchable Databases. Some exclusive to Harvard students, these online resources provide job and internship listings, networking contacts, and industry information access 24/7. Attend a workshop to learn more about these databases, or stop by OCS during Drop-Ins to have a member of OCS first-floor team give you a personal demonstration. Crimson Careers Search broadly through our job and internship database. Look regularly—listings are added frequently. This past year alone there were over 8,000 jobs and internships posted in Crimson Careers. Keyword searches may lead to better results when searching “non-profit” or “engineering.” Specialized searches also can be selected for jobs and internships posted by: • Harvard Centers and Departments • Harvard Alumni • On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) • Internship Consortia −− UCAN - 22 select colleges and universities from across the country jointly post over 8,000 domestic and international internships each academic year in order to represent a wide diversity of geographic locations, industries, and job functions −− iNet - an elite Ivy+ internship database with nearly 5,000 internship postings, iNet includes a range of industries, with non-profits, communication/media, marketing, internet, and start-ups as the 5 most-posted industries this past year Going Global Includes job and internship listings, as well as informative country guides with tips on local professional etiquette, tailoring resumes and curriculum vitae by country/region, and visa information. WetFeet Helpful tips and insider information on over 55 career areas; provides interview tips, job search advice, and company guides. Vault A free, PIN-protected resources with over 140 downloadable career guides, employer profiles and rankings, discussion boards, industry blogs and news. LinkedIn A professional networking site; provides job listings and opportunities to connect with students, alumni, and employers. Join the Harvard College Group to connect with thousands of alumni. Insider Tip: “LinkedIn is a recruiter’s bread and butter.” Joshua Scull, Oak Ridge National Laboratories. Peer2Peer Network Searchable database of fellow Harvard students who have volunteered to share their summer experiences with you – a great way to make a contact in a particular organization of interest to you. Crimson Compass Connect with alumni who have volunteered to speak with students about careers and industries. Select multiple career areas and keep searches broad; this resource is for informational interviews, not for job placement or listings.




Are You Prepared for the Job Search in an Uncertain Economy? Despite the current economy, as a Harvard student you have many reasons to remain confident and optimistic, provided you approach your job search with realistic expectations and are ready to invest both time and effort. Cast a wide net. Don’t approach the job search with your heart set on one dream employer, job, or industry. It is important to think about multiple paths you can take in the short term to gain the skills you need to achieve your goals in the long term. It is important to extend your search beyond on-campus interviews, which only represent a small fraction of the opportunities available to Harvard students. If you don’t get an offer from your first choice organization, think about where else you could learn similar expertise or develop other valuable abilities. Furthermore, keep in mind that some industry sectors are more or less impacted by different economic factors.

Build your professional network. In an uncertain economy, employers are often less able to predict their hiring needs in advance and therefore rely more heavily on “just in time” hiring. For this reason, it is essential to be proactive and not wait until a job gets posted. Use friends, OCS events, family members, and the Harvard network to meet people in the organizations and industries where you would like to work. Stay in touch so you are at the top of their list when a position becomes available. Furthermore, having a good network is your greatest asset in the future as you try to change jobs, change sectors, get relevant inside information, or advance in your chosen field.

Use all the resources available to you. OCS has expert staff and resources to help you navigate your job search in varying economic climates. Take advantage of resume and interview workshops to put your best foot forward. Attend career fairs and panels to meet faceto-face with potential employers. Meet with a counselor to strategize the best course of action for you and your goals. Use the online and library resources to expand your job search.

Stay positive. Although the job search may seem more difficult or take longer than you expected, keep in mind employers want to hire people who can solve tough problems, overcome obstacles, and stay enthusiastic through challenging times. OCS staff, programs, and resources can help you stay motivated and stay on track. Keep in mind that people hired during a recession often advance more rapidly, as they have had opportunities to take on more responsibility earlier in their careers and have demonstrated success in the face of adversity.




On-Campus Interview Program 101 The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




On-Campus Interviews What is the On-Campus Interview Program? Some students mistakenly think of the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) as the “easy” way to find a job or internship. While many aspects of the program make the application and interview processes more convenient, it is important to realize that OCI is often stressful with multiple quick deadlines and demanding interview schedules. OCI streamlines the application and first round interview process for both full-time and internship opportunities with approximately 200 employer participants each year. The majority of on-campus interviews are held in our interview facility at 1033 Mass Ave, 5th Floor. However, the process is highly competitive and only used by certain types of companies. The program is one tool among many that students should utilize in their search for jobs and internships.

Why are there so many finance and consulting firms?

Successful candidates are those who:

Every year students ask this question. Over 25 different industries were represented in last year’s On-Campus Interview Program, including popular opportunities at Abercrombie & Fitch, Facebook, Pepsi and Walt Disney. That being said, many types of companies and organizations do not hire through such an elaborate process as OCI. Formal programs are very time consuming and expensive for employers. Highly sought after firms in areas such as sports, media, electronic gaming, non-profits, and entertainment are overloaded with applications and have no need to spend resources traveling to college campuses in search of additional candidates. Other types of employers such as startups, venture capital, journalism, and biotech firms are looking for applicants to show initiative by finding them. In addition, many companies prefer to make “just in time” hiring decisions closer to the employment start date and cannot predict hiring needs in advance. If you do not see an employer, organization, or industry of interest to you interviewing on campus, they may still be interested in hiring you! Refer to the other sections of this guide and use OCS Drop-In Hours, Monday through Friday, 1 – 4pm to let OCS help you develop an individualized job search plan.

• Engage in a significant amount of advance preparation • Conduct industry research and employer outreach • Take the time to learn which companies interest them and why and can communicate this clearly during an interview • Build connections with people who work where they are applying

Crimson Careers OCI is facilitated using the Crimson Careers online system. Students are able to manage their OCI applications and interviews using the same website where they can search other job and internship opportunities posted by companies, organizations, and Harvard Departments and Centers.


Important OCI Dates First Fall Application Deadline Wednesday, September 14th @ 11:59pm in Crimson Careers Full-Time Job Interviews September 23rd– October 27th First Spring Application Deadline Wednesday, January 11th @ 11:59pm on Crimson Careers Summer Internship and Spring Full-Time Job Interviews January 24th – February 23rd



By the Numbers (2010-2011) FULL-TIME






Number in class





Number (and % of class) active OCI participants

639 (39%)

542 (33%)

187 (11%)

32 (2%)

Number of OCI applications





Average number of OCI applications

18 / student

19 / student

6/ student

3/ student

Number of OCI Interviews





Average number of OCI interviews

6/ student

5/ student

2/ student

2/ student

Number (and percent of applicants) who accepted offers through OCI

277 (43%)

242 (45%)

45 (25%)

5 (16%)

Percent of class who accepted an offer through OCI





Summer Internships Program Eligibility Harvard College students and alumni, including undergraduates on a leave of absence Graduate School of Arts and Sciences students and alumni Select Harvard Extension School and MIT Students

Many firms in the On-Campus Interview Program are increasingly turning to their summer interns to fill their full-time openings. These employers specifically target juniors and some sophomores for internships that allow both the student and the employer to test drive a future full-time employment relationship. Students applying for these summer positions must meet high standards and should prepare accordingly. In many cases competition for summer internships is more intense than for full-time jobs. Last year, only 3% of participating sophomores and 5 freshmen accepted summer internship offers through OCI. Other employers in the On-Campus Interview Program choose only to manage their full-time hiring through OCS. These companies often have summer internships but ask that students apply directly to them through their website.

NOTE to Juniors and Sophomores: Don’t hesitate to attend an Employer Networking & Information Session in the early fall, especially if you do not see one scheduled specifically for summer internships later in the semester. Many employers only have one session during the year, regardless of how many times they come to interview on campus. As with full-time positions, the On-Campus Interview Program may not include the type of summer internship that every student is looking for. The program is not meant to be the single source of all employment opportunities. The program is one tool among many that students should utilize in their search for jobs and internships. For more information about other resources see the other sections of this Guide and the OCS website.





On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) Academic & OCI Calendar, 2011-2012 Senior Job Search & OCI Orientation

Wed, Aug 31 & Thurs, Sept 1

Fall Networking & Information Sessions

Wed, Aug 31 - Thurs, Oct 6

Finance Boutique Night

Wednesday, September 7

On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) Career Fair

Friday, September 9

First Fall OCI Deadline, Full-Time only

Wednesday, September 14

Consulting Boutique Night

Friday, September 16

Mock Interview Marathon, Full-Time

Tues, Sept 20 - Thurs, Sept 22

Fall On-Campus Interviews, Full-Time only

Fri, Sept 23 - Thurs, Oct 27

No Off-Campus Second Round Interviews

Fri, Sept 23 - Fri, Sept 30

The Job & Internship Forum

Friday, October 14

Intern Networking & Information Sessions

Mon, Oct 31 - Thurs, Nov 17

Summer Opportunities Fair

Monday, December 5

Fall Reading Period

Sat, Dec 3 - Sun, Dec 11

Fall Examinations*

Mon, Dec 12 - Tues, Dec 20

Winter Recess

Wed, Dec 21 - Tues, Jan 17

First Spring OCI Deadline, Intern & Full-Time

Wednesday, January 11

Mock Interview Marathon, Intern

Thurs, Jan 19 - Fri, Jan 20

First Day of Spring Classes

Monday, January 23

Spring On-Campus Interviews, Intern & Full-Time

Tues, Jan 24 - Thur, Feb 23

No Off-Campus Second Round Interviews

Tues, Jan 24 - Fri, Feb 3

Spring Break

Sat, Mar 10 - Sun, Mar 18

Spring Reading Period

Thurs, Apr 26 - Thurs, May 3

Spring Examinations*

Fri, May 4 - Sat, May 12


Thursday, May 24

*Absolutely NO recruiting events, i.e. interviews or meetings, are to take place during Harvard's Exam Periods.

Offer Decision Deadlines Job Offers Resulting from a Previous OCI Summer Internship

Thursday, November 3

Job Offers Resulting from FALL OCI

Thursday, December 1*

Summer Intern Offers Resulting from a Previous OCI Summer Internship

Thursday, March 1*

Job/ Summer Intern Offers Resulting from SPRING OCI

Thursday, March 1*

*Or three weeks from date of written offer, whichever is LATER.


THE HARVARD GUIDE TO YOUR JOB SEARCH 2011–2012 Last printed on: 8/17/11 4:08 PM



On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) ON-CAMPUS INTERVIEW DATES AND DEADLINES 2011-2012 FALL 2011 Employer Interview Date Friday 9/23 - Friday 9/30*

Student Application Deadline Wednesday 9/14 @ 11:59pm

Employer Preselect Deadline Tuesday 9/20**

Monday 10/3 - Friday 10/7

Wednesday 9/21 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 9/27

Tuesday 10/11 - Thursday 10/13

Wednesday 9/28 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 10/4

Monday 10/17 - Thursday 10/20

Wednesday 10/5 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 10/11

Monday 10/24 - Thursday 10/27

Wednesday 10/12 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 10/18

*No interviews will be held on Thursday, 9/29 due to the Rosh Hashana holiday. **Employers with a Friday 9/23 Visit Date will have a Preselect Deadline of Friday 9/16.

SPRING 2012 Employer Interview Date Tuesday 1/24 - Friday 1/27 Monday 1/30 - Friday 2/3

Student Application Deadline Wednesday 1/11 @ 11:59pm Wednesday 1/18 @ 11:59pm

Employer Preselect Deadline Tuesday 1/17 Tuesday 1/24

Monday 2/6 - Thursday 2/9

Wednesday 1/25 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 1/31

Monday 2/13 - Thursday 2/16

Wednesday 2/1 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 2/7

Tuesday 2/21 - Thursday 2/23

Wednesday 2/8 @ 11:59pm

Tuesday 2/14

Interview Schedule Notes 1) All students must register to participate in the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI). 2) Student Application Deadline: Students submit all application-related materials via the Crimson Careers OCI system each Wednesday night, two weeks prior to the Employer Interview Date. 3) Employer Preselect Deadline: Invited, alternate and not invited decisions are typically entered by 6pm on this date in Crimson Careers. Check your "interviews" tab in Crimson Careers to view your status. 4) Pre-select (Invited) Sign-up Start Date is 12:00am the day after the Employer Preselect Deadline. 5) Schedule Types: Interview schedules may be one of two options listed below. a) Preselect - Alternate Schedules: Alternates will be able to select any remaining interview time slots at 12:00am three days before the interview date. b) Open Schedules: Interviews are scheduled entirely on a first-come, first-served basis. 6) Interview Changes: You may change your interview time in Crimson Careers if there are open interview times available up until 12am two calendar days prior to the interview date. If you need to switch an interview time and there are no open times available, please email to request an interview switch with another student. 7) Interview Cancellations: You may cancel an interview up to 12am two calendar days prior to the interview date through Crimson Careers. Late cancellations are a violation of the On-Campus Interview Program Policies. Students may not cancel a first-round interview to attend a second-round interview. Harvard University FAS- Office of Career Services On-Campus Interview Office: 617-495-2598 / \ 54 Dunster Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 THE HARVARD GUIDE TO YOUR JOB SEARCH 2011–2012  


Last printed on: 8/17/11 4:08 PM


OCI Registration All currently enrolled Harvard College and GSAS students already have access to Crimson Careers. However, to earn “OCI rights” – to be able apply to on-campus interview opportunities, schedule on-campus interviews, and otherwise participate in the On-Campus Interview Program – you must follow the registration procedures listed below: • To apply to employers with the first OCI deadline on Wednesday, September 14th, seniors and recent alums must attend one of the Fall Senior Orientation Meetings on Wednesday, August 31st or Thursday, September 1st at 4:00pm the Science Center. • GSAS students are invited to attend an Orientation Meeting or the special GSAS session for the Job Acceleration Work Group on Friday, August 26th, 10:30am @ OCS. • Underclassmen are invited to attend Orientation Meetings that will be scheduled in October, November and December, allowing them to gather information and register in plenty of time for the first internship deadline on January 11th. • Students who do not attend an Orientation Meeting may register after September 12th via our website. Students must complete a brief online tutorial and pass an online quiz with a minimum 80% correct score in order to participate. Online registrations will take two business days to process.

Information for Study/Work Abroad Students Students who study or work abroad are attractive candidates to employers. Going to an international destination shows initiative, independence, curiosity, a willingness to explore and acclimate to a new culture, and other valuable qualities. Employers do not want to miss these candidates, but the logistics of being out of the country do create some obstacles and may require the student to do extra leg work. The most important things to remember about On-Campus Interviews or your job/internship search while you are studying abroad are: • Start early – Make a plan for how you will proceed given your unique circumstances. Remember that some elements of your search can be conducted even before you leave the country. • Be flexible – Each employer will have their own way of working with students who are going abroad, so be ready to research and adapt to their processes. This is also why it is important to start early. • Use all your resources – The counselors and staff at OCS are available to help you strategize your individual approach. Many of our resources are online and accessible from anywhere in the world where you have internet access. • Know the logistics – Be sure to attend an Orientation Meeting before you go abroad or plan to take the online Tutorial and Quiz from overseas (see OCI Registration). While you may be able to apply to OCI positions through Crimson Careers if you have registered, it is important that you do not sign up for an interview time unless you will be physically present on the interview date. • Stay connected – You can still belong to OCS list servs, utilize OCS online chat hours, and login to OCS proprietary databases from abroad. Don’t forget to check the student section of the OCS website at both before you go and while you are away to get the most up to date information and information that is more specific to you.




Using Crimson Careers Through the Crimson Careers online system, access to jobs and internships posted exclusively to Harvard students, opportunities posted by Harvard Centers and Departments, internships posted by our consortia partners, and OCI jobs and internships have all been centralized to one website. However, to apply to OCI positions, students must still register with the On-Campus Interview Program to gain “OCI Rights” (see OCI Registration). Below is a brief overview of how to navigate Crimson Careers for employers participating in the On-Campus Interview Program.

NAVIGATION BAR Crimson Careers is streamlined so that students can see diverse opportunities together in one searchable database. Current students have access to the following services as indicated on the navigation bar apart from the “interviews” tab. The “interviews” tab is only available to students once they have registered for the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI).

HOME TAB On the home page of Crimson Careers, you will find “shortcuts” that are specific to your profile description, “announcements” from OCS, and “alerts” indicating activity on your account or steps you need to follow, such as signing up for an OCI interview.

PROFILE TAB This basic yet important information is for OCS internal use only and is not visible to employers. It is used for contact information and for scheduling appointments. Keep your phone number and email address up-to-date so that we can contact you in case of a change in schedule, interview cancellation, or a last minute open interview time! Please note that you must use your @fas, @college, or @post email address to access the Crimson Careers system. If you are having this email account forward to another account, like gmail, be sure to double-check that you are not missing any important system messages by continuing to check your Harvard account while you are going through the OCI process. Email messages, such as interview sign-up alerts and reminders, are sent from Crimson Careers on a batch basis and may be filtered as spam during the forwarding process.

DOCUMENTS TAB All application documents can be uploaded or viewed from this tab and may include resumes, cover letters, unofficial transcripts, and writing samples. Customized resumes and documents can also be uploaded directly to specific positions from the job description page. Below is some important information to help you use the documents


tab most efficiently: • Upload resumes, cover letters, and writing samples from Microsoft Word. • “Unofficial Transcript” means your “Student Record” or “Official Transcript” only, see the OCI section of the OCS website for more details. • To remove encryption, your Student Record must be printed and then scanned into a pdf. • If you do not upload your documents as instructed above, employers may receive your application materials as a blank page stating “document could not be included.” • Always “View” uploaded documents from the documents tab to ensure proper formatting was maintained in the file conversion. • There is NO LIMIT as to how many documents you can upload.

JOBS & INTERNSHIPS TAB There are many preset searches to help you find the kind of opportunities that you are looking for. Crimson Careers allows you to set up your own searches, set favorites, and set up “search agents” to get email updates on new postings. Depending on your search criteria, you most likely will see OCI positions side-by-side with other non-OCI opportunities. This key will help you identify what sort of opportunity has been posted.

Non-OCI Job Postings: J= Job Listing These are NON-OCI jobs and internships and DO NOT have on-campus interviews associated with them. Apply by following the instructions in the job description. Employer representatives will contact you directly to set up an interview time and location. Your application to these postings will show up in the “Applications” subtab of the “Jobs & Internships” tab.

OCI Positions and Interviews: P = Pre-Select Positions that have this classification are ALWAYS On-Campus Interview positions. This term means that the employer is selecting


ON-CAMPUS INTERVIEWS interview candidates prior to the interview date. Apply by clicking on the job description and submitting the requested documents through Crimson Careers. Your application to these postings will show up in the “OCI Applications” sub-tab of the “Interviews” tab. O= Open Although few employers use this type of selection process, positions that have this classification are ALWAYS On-Campus Interview positions. This term means that the employer is willing to interview students without prior screening. Apply by clicking on the job description and submitting the requested documents through Crimson Careers, and then you will automatically be able to sign up for an interview slot. This is also the position type used for educational events like the OCS Mock Interview Marathon. You may

view your scheduled interview under the “Scheduled Interviews” sub-tab of the “Interviews” tab. *C= Resume Collect, CF= Career Fair classifications are not used at this time. Students are responsible for providing to individual employers exactly what the employer requests. One of the first things a recruiter asks him or herself is “Did the student give me what I asked for?” Whenever possible tailor your application materials to the specific job or industry for which you are applying. Be sure to read all sections of the posting carefully to ensure that your application is complete.

Common Application Questions or Mistakes This employer does not indicate that they want a cover letter, should I attach one anyway? For OCI opportunities each employer has individual specifications and needs, so demonstrate your ability to pay attention to details and follow instructions by providing exactly the documents requested, no more and no less. Don’t send one general cover letter for all your applications! You may have filled out a common application for college, but your job applications should be tailored to the needs and specifications indicated in the job description. Can employers see the saved document names? Yes! Be careful to name your documents carefully. For example, you do not want to send a document called “Consulting Letter” to a non-profit organization! How do I attach my GPA or SAT scores? If an employer requests GPA and/or SAT scores, simply include them in your resume. A separate document is not necessary. Note: Employers may wish to check the accuracy of these figures before formally hiring you by requesting an official transcript and/or reports from the relevant testing service.


Do I need an official copy of my transcript? No! You may use your “FAS Registrar’s Student Record” in lieu of your official transcript. See the OCI section of the OCS website for specific information about scanning and uploading your transcript. Note: you are on your honor to supply accurate transcript information to employers and must use your official transcript or Student Record only. Misrepresenting your Harvard transcript is an Ad Board offense. Why is the employer asking me to apply on their website in addition to Crimson Careers? Some employers, whether for legal or tracking purposes, require students to also complete applications through the organization’s website. If an online application is required, the employer’s web address will be given, and you must complete BOTH the online application at the company website and the Crimson Careers application to be considered for an on-campus interview. Be sure to check the entire job posting carefully to see if an employer requires an additional application on their website.



resumes & cover letters The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




Create a Strong Resume A resume should be a brief, informative summary of your abilities, education, and experience. It should highlight your strongest assets and skills, and differentiate you from other candidates seeking similar positions. Although it alone will not get you a job or internship, a good resume is an important element towards obtaining an interview. Tailor your resume to the type of position you are seeking. This does not mean that all of your work history must relate directly, but your resume should reflect the kind of skills the employer would value. Find additional guidance on resumes and cover letters, as well as resume samples, on the OCS website or on the first floor of OCS.


Specific rather than general Active rather than passive Written to express not impress Articulate rather than “flowery” Fact-based (quantify and qualify) Written for people who scan quickly

DON’T: • • • • • • • •

Use personal pronouns (such as I) Abbreviate Use a narrative style Number or letter categories Use slang or colloquialisms Include a picture Include age or sex List references on resume

TOP 5 RESUME MISTAKES: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Spelling and grammar errors Missing email and phone information Using passive language instead of “action” words Not well organized, concise, or easy to skim Too long (keep to a single page for most industries)

DO: • Be consistent in format and content • Make it easy to read and follow • Use spacing, underlining, italics, bold, and capitalization for emphasis • List headings (such as Professional Experience) in order of importance • Within headings, list information in reverse chronological order (most recent first) • Avoid information gaps such as a missing summer • Be sure that your formatting translates properly if converted to a .pdf

Plan to work internationally? Resume guidelines can vary from country to country. Check out Going Global at




Sample Resume Sample Resume


433 Mather Mail Center Harvard College Cambridge, MA 02138-6175 (555) 111-2222

Always use your @fas or @college email account and check it frequently, even if you have enabled forwarding. If an employer asks for your SAT scores or GPA, you can include them in your education section.

Roberta Josephina Maddox

17 Rodeo Road Irvine, CA 92720 (555) 222-3333

Education HARVARD UNIVERSITY Cambridge, MA A.B. Honors degree in History. GPA 3.73. June 2012 Coursework in International Political Economics and the European Community. Commit 25 hours per week to the Harvard Varsity Field Hockey Program. UNIVERSITY OF LONDON Study abroad coursework in Investment Analysis and Financial Accounting. IRVINE HIGH SCHOOL Graduated with high honors. SAT I: M:780 V:760. National Honor Society. Member of Varsity Field Hockey Team.

London, UK Fall 2010 Irvine, CA May 2008

Professional Experience PEPSI-COLA NORTH AMERICA BEVERAGES New York, NY Marketing Analyst Intern Summer 2011 Examined profitability of foreign market for new fruit drink using analysis of comparable local brands. Managed focus groups and consumer surveys gathering >500 data points. Created ideas for niche marketing campaigns including use of social networks and viral marketing. Presented findings to senior managers using quantitative analysis and creative visuals in a combined PowerPoint presentation. THOMAS WILCK ASSOCIATES Newport Beach, CA Assistant Account Executive Summer 2010 Researched and assembled requests for proposals for medium-sized public relations and communications firm. Actively participated in staff meetings and brainstorming sessions. Generated correspondence with top executive officers. TECH HILLS Laguna Hills, CA Technology Intern Summer 2009 Implemented new web site, including backend database storage system and dynamic web pages. Note that relevant interests and skills can be Leadership Experience demonstrated through campus and volunteer activities as well as through previous employment. HARVARD UNDERGRADUATE WOMEN IN BUSINESS (WIB) Executive Committee Member Spring 2010–Present Organized marketing and advertising campaign to increase membership. Coordinated business conference and networking reception for 50 business professionals and 500 students. Watch out for typos! HARVARD COLLEGE MARATHON CHALLENGE Training Program Director Spring 2009 Developled training program for 25 charity runners. Raised over $25,000 to support Phillips Brooks House Association and The Cambridge Food Project. Skills & Interests Computer: Microsoft Excel, Power Point, and Access, Stata, SQL, Java and HTML. Language: Fluent French and Conversational Spanish. Traveled extensively in Europe.




Write an Effective Cover Letter A cover letter is an important part of the application process. It is an opportunity to make a concise argument as to why you are a great fit for the particular position and how you can contribute to the organization. Your cover letter should demonstrate that you have thoroughly read the job description and the employer’s web site while highlighting your skills and experiences that are most applicable to the job or industry. It is not a narrative version of your resume but instead a means of connecting your resume to the specific needs of the position and organization. While many sections and ideas in your cover letter can be reused for multiple positions, even in multiple industries, avoid using a generic cover letter. You may have filled out a common application for colleges, but for job applications your materials should always be as tailored as possible to the needs and specifications indicated in the employer’s job description.

Some general rules about letters include: • • • • • • • •

Address your letters to a specific person if you can. Tailor your letters to specific situations or organizations by doing research before writing your letters. Keep letters concise and factual, no more than a single page. Avoid flowery language. Give examples that support your skills and qualifications. Put yourself in the reader’s shoes. What can you say that will convince the reader that you are ready and able to do the job? Remember that this is a marketing tool. Use lots of action words. Have someone proofread your letter. If converting to a .pdf, check that your formatting translated correctly. You can find additional guidance on cover letters, as well as letter samples on the OCS website or on the first floor of OCS.

Cover Letters and Crimson Careers Below are some of the frequently asked question regarding cover letters and the Crimson Careers online system. How do I know if a cover letter is required on Crimson Careers? Once you click into a specific job or internship in Crimson Careers, application requirements are listed on the right-hand side of the webpage. You need to upload a resume for the system to know that you are eligible to apply and to reveal the application requirements, so you might want to upload a blank document as a resume to get started. If a cover letter is not required, should I submit one anyway? For OCI positions, no. The employers are very specific about what they want and are looking for candidates to follow instructions. For non-OCI positions, you should also generally follow instructions, but as long as it is not specifically prohibited, a thoughtful, tailored cover letter will add value to your candidacy. Who do I address my cover letter to? Unless there is a separate contact listed somewhere in the body of the position description, you should use the contact information posted on Crimson Careers. You can find the contact’s name on the right-hand side of the position description below the application requirements. If you do not find a contact name, “To Whom It May Concern” is sufficient.




Sample Cover Letter


Sample Cover Letter September 20, 2011 Ms. Ellie Wells Senior Manager Wallaby Yogurt Company 110 Mezzetta Ct American Canyon, CA 94503 Dear Ms. Wells: I am a senior at Harvard University and would like to be considered for the Manager in Training opportunity at the Wallaby Yogurt Company. I am very interested in the field of marketing and would welcome the opportunity to contribute my research and writing skills and experience to your growing business. I am excited about Wallaby’s commitment to organic, all-natural ingredients in its products. As a varsity field hockey player, I am very aware of the importance of healthy food as the foundation for a healthy life. Your emphasis on “learning by doing and leading by serving” is also very consistent with the training I received as an athlete. Whether on the field learning new drills in the worst weather conditions or patiently working with a new team member, I am most fulfilled when contributing to the team effort. At Harvard, my concentration is in History while also exploring coursework in Economics. My academic work has strengthened my research and writing skills as well as my understanding of the economics of business growth and development. Working with Harvard Undergraduate Women in Business (WIB) over the last two years gave me the experience and confidence to work in a dynamic, fast-paced organization where being a quick learner and pitching in are instrumental to success. As a member of the Executive Committee, for example, I managed campus advertising campaigns that increased overall membership and attracted more than 500 students from 12 different schools to our annual Intercollegiate Fall Conference. Thank you for your consideration. I very much look forward to the opportunity to speak with you in person about my interest in this position. Sincerely,

Roberta Maddox




Get Resume and Cover Letter Help at OCS • Resume and Cover Letter Workshops. Learn the nuts and bolts of getting started. First resume workshop is Wednesday, September 7th, 4pm @ OCS. See the OCS Calendar for additional dates. • OCS Drop-Ins. Monday through Friday, 1 – 4pm – come by and sign up for a ten minute session. Have someone review your resume or cover letter, get any career question answered, or get help getting started. • Extended OCS Drop-Ins. In addition to the regular OCS Drop-Ins, OCS advisors will review resumes and cover letters from 11 am–1pm August 31st - September 30th. • Industry-Specific Resume Review Clinics. Led by employers in areas such as consulting, financial services, and banking; listed on the On- Campus Interview Program Google Calendar. • Employer Office Hours. Use these 1-on-1 sessions with recruiters or alumni to get feedback on your application materials.

150 Sample Action Words Accomplished Achieved Acted Adapted Added Administered Advised Analyzed Assembled Assessed Broadened Budgeted Built Calculated Centralized Changed Clarified Classified Collaborated Compiled Completed Composed Conducted Conceived Concluded


Constructed Controlled Coordinated Counseled Created Defined Delivered Derived Demonstrated Designed Determined Developed Devised Directed Discovered Earned Edited Enhanced Established Evaluated Examined Executed Expanded Expedited Fabricated

Facilitated Followed Formed Formulated Founded Generated Governed Guided Headed Identified Impacted Implemented Improved Increased Initiated Inspected Instituted Instructed Interviewed Interpreted Introduced Invented Launched Lectured Led

Liaised Maintained Managed Marketed Mastered Maximized Mediated Minimized Modeled Monitored Motivated Negotiated Operated Organized Originated Participated Performed Persuaded Planned Predicted Prepared Presented Prioritized Processed Programmed

Promoted Proposed Proved Provided Publicized Published Purchased Recommended Redesigned Reduced Regulated Renegotiated Reorganized Reported Represented Researched Resolved Reviewed Revised Rewrote Scheduled Selected Served Shaped Simplified

Sold Solved Streamlined Strengthened Structured Studied Summarized Supervised Supported Surpassed Surveyed Synthesized Taught Tested Trained Translated Unified Updated Upgraded Utilized Verbalized Verified Visualized Worked Wrote




The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




Ace the Interview During an interview, potential employers are trying to assess your qualifications for the job, your “fit” with the employer or organization, how well you have considered your reasons for applying, how clearly you can communicate your potential contribution to the organization, and your “soft skills,” such as communication and professionalism. In other words, the interviewer wants to know: Why do you want to work here? and, Why should we hire you? Employers are looking for students who are focused and mature, understand the requirements of the job, and can communicate how their skills can be used to meet those requirements. They want to hire people who are cooperative, organized, and hard-working. Listed below are some suggestions for improving your interviewing skills.

Research the employer, field, and position

Dress appropriately

Before the interview, read the employer’s website as well as any print material that you may have picked up at job fairs or other hiring events. Be sure to stay current on industry news by reading daily news publications and associated periodicals. Google search the organization on the day of the interview to be current on any new developments. Utilize Harvard online subscriptions such as Vault (available online through the OCS website) and Hoovers (Hollis) for additional industry and organization information. Whenever possible, attend the employer’s Networking & Information Session or speak with someone who works at the organization to increase your visibility in the organization and to gather additional first-hand information.

A well-groomed, professional appearance is essential to making your best possible impression. Attend employer Networking & Information Sessions to pick up cues on how to dress for particular industries. Generally, both men and women should plan to wear conservative attire in a dark color. In some creative, technical, or non-profit fields you may have more leeway in terms of formal vs. casual dress, but it is always safe to err on the formal side.

Know your resume Be prepared to discuss everything on your resume. Remember that your resume is the only information most interviewers will have about you. Expect questions about your choice of activities, concentration, and thesis if you have included a reference to it. Employers and organizations are interested in knowing how you’ve chosen to spend your time and energy, and why. Help your interviewer get to know you and differentiate you from other students. Don’t be terse when answering “what and why” questions, but don’t ramble, either. Expand on your experience and skills, but whenever you can, focus your responses on how these relate to the job for which you are interviewing.

Practice Interviewing The old saying “practice makes perfect” certainly applies to the interview process. Practice doesn’t imply that you are memorizing questions and answers, but instead that you are making eye-contact, clarifying your explanations, understanding the reasoning behind certain questions, and connecting your own experience to them. You can practice with roommates, friends, tutors, and OCS counselors by scheduling a half hour appointment and requesting interview practice. The more experience you have articulating your thoughts and highlighting your skills, the more effective and polished your presentation will be.

Corporate Dress, for Men • dark suit with a light shirt • conservative tie • dark/well-polished shoes Business Casual, for Men • khakis or dress pants • button-down long-sleeve shirt or polo • have a blazer and tie handy Corporate Dress, for Women • dark suit or tailored dress • simple jewelry • dark/well-polished close-toe shoes Business Casual, for Women • skirts or dress pants • sweater sets or blouses • have a blazer handy

Prepare some questions to ask an employer Thoughtful questions will help you underscore your interest in the job and demonstrate that you have done your own research regarding the available position. Make sure you know the next step in the process before you leave. Ask, “When might I expect to hear from you?” and, if applicable, indicate your continued interest in the position.



INTERVIEWS Have a good attitude Project enthusiasm, confidence, and a positive attitude! You must convey the message that you are the best candidate for the position you are interviewing for, and that this is the employer you want to work for. A job interview is not the place to be “laid-back;” it is up to you to “sell” yourself for the job. You must market your skills and experience to fit the job requirements, which you know from careful and extensive research of the employer. Be professional, polished, and confident.

Interviewing Tips Interviewing Nuts & Bolts Tips: • • • • • • •

Google the location of the interview Arrive 10-15 minutes early Bring extra copies of your resume and paper to write on Silence your cell phone Smile and shake hands Make eye contact After the interview, send a thank you note or email

Phone Interviews The phone interview is often used to screen candidates. Especially in a slow economy, employers may opt to use the phone interview more comprehensively beyond a general pre-screen, perhaps even asking case questions and technical questions to assess your ability to do the job. In light of this, we encourage you to prepare for a phone interview as you would for any interview. Be ready to answer challenging questions and provide feedback on a variety of issues related to the field and the organization. The difference between a phone interview and a face-to-face interview is that you are not able to see the interviewer’s reactions and adjust accordingly. There is a certain amount of energy that is shared between interviewer and interviewee that is somewhat lost in a phone interview. Make sure you compensate for this by being prepared, focused, and able to communicate clearly. A few tips: • Enunciate clearly and do not speak too quickly. • If possible, use a landline instead of a cell phone to avoid static, noise, and losing signal. • Plan the time and place of your phone interview so that you know you will have privacy, quiet, and a good connection. You may be able to schedule a room and phone at OCS if the interview takes place during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, 9am-6pm, by calling 617-495-2595 option 0. • Dress as you would for a real interview. Dressing the part will help you focus on the importance and purpose of the conversation. • Have clear and organized notes in front of you as reminders of questions to ask, background information about the employer, and perhaps even strategies for answering tough questions.

Get Interview Help at OCS OCS offers a number of opportunities to learn more about interviewing and to practice your skills. Refer to the calendar section of the OCS website for dates and times. Ace Your Interview: Strategies for Success Wednesday, September 21st, 4pm @ OCS Case Interview Workshop with Case in Point author Marc Cosentino Monday, September 19th, 8:00pm @ Science Center A Mock Interview Marathons Schedule a mock interview with an volunteer employer or graduate student who has experience in your preferred industry. You must be registered with the On-Campus Interview Program and sign-up through Crimson Careers in order to participate. • FALL (Seniors and Alumni): Tue Sept 20th – Thurs Sept 22nd • WINTER (Underclassmen): Thurs Jan 19th & Fri Jan 20th General Mock Interviews After the Mock Marathon, you may schedule a half hour appointment with an OCS advisor though Crimson Careers. We also recommend that you take advantage of the resources available in the houses through your house business and/or pre-career tutors. Industry Specific Interview Workshops Led by employers in areas such as consulting, financial services, and banking. See the OCS Google Calendars for dates and times. OCS Publications Available at OCS and on the OCS website. OCS Resource Library Includes online texts by Vault and WetFeet, and titles like Case in Point by Marc Cosentino, and free access to http://




Interviewing Types Behavioral and “Fit” Interviews At some point in the interview process, the majority of employers use what is called a “Behavioral Interview” to assess a candidate’s skills and fit with their organization. The principle behind this type of interview is that past behavior will predict future behavior. In most cases, the employer has predetermined a specific set of characteristics, often referred to as “competencies,” that are required to be successful in the available position. Some examples of competencies include problem-solving, teamwork, communication, writing skills, and leadership. The employer then designs open-ended questions that ask you to refer back to a particular situation and describe how you responded. INSIDER TIP: Many employers will openly discuss their chosen “competencies” with candidates at a Career Fair, Networking & Information Session, or other recruiting or educational event, like a “pre-night” the evening before the on-campus interviews. For example, an interviewer may request, “Tell me about a time when you were on a team that was not working well together.” The expectation then is that you cite a specific situation from your own experience. Unless the interviewer indicates otherwise, the incident you describe can come from your work, school, activity, or volunteer experience. It is important that you have something specific to say and that you can describe your own role and what you learned from the particular situation. Be aware that the interviewer is expecting to ask you multiple questions in a thirty minute interview, so be as concise as possible while getting your point across. This type of interview is a great way for you to tell the story behind your resume. Rather than merely presenting a list of your achievements, you have the opportunity to elaborate on some accomplishments that you may be particularly proud of. But like a good story, it is best to keep a few guidelines in mind: • • • • •

Show, don’t tell—use a specific example and relevant details Stay on topic—remember the question you are trying to answer; don’t get sidetracked Have a conclusion—be sure to include the outcome or what you learned from the situation Make it resonate—touch upon why your behavior or response would be useful to the employer or in the position Show passion for the mission – in non-profits, sports, entertainment, bio-tech, start-ups and other areas, a core competency may include a passion for the goals of the organization

In addition to determining how your interests and skills “fit” with the position and organization, the interviewer is often also trying to assess how you might fit in regards to the company or team culture. Sometimes fit questions are simply about whether you can connect with the interviewer on some other topic apart from your work or Harvard experience. Consider how you want to discuss another interest that you have, whether it be art, current events, gaming, etc., should an interviewer ask you about them – especially if you have referenced these interests on your resume! Many interviewers also apply what is colloquially referred to as the “airport test,” especially in fields where people work for long hours in teams. While they are listening to your responses, the interviewer is mentally asking him or herself, “Is this someone I could be stuck with at an airport for 12 hours?” It is important to keep in mind that this question is not a social question about friendship – this question is in a professional context to encapsulate other questions like: “Can you make the most out of a bad situation?” and, “Can you get along with your colleagues for long periods of time under less than ideal circumstances?” You may consider applying this test yourself as you evaluate whether this is an organization or field where you want to work.

Finance Interviews Because of the highly analytical and quantitative nature of the field, finance interviewers may purposely create a challenging environment to test how you will respond in an actual work situation. It is not uncommon for the interviewer to ask seemingly odd questions in a rapidfire manner such as, “Quick, what is your SAT score?” or perhaps, “A client is screaming at you on the phone, how are you going to calm the situation?” Even the interview room may be set up so that multiple interviewers have a role to play in creating a test situation (think good cop/ bad cop). Remember, in these types of interviews, employers want you to showcase your ability to remain composed under stress, analyze a situation, and form conclusions about the situation. The finance interview seeks to assess two things in a candidate: (1) fit for the job and the organization and (2) technical knowledge. In the world of finance, there are multiple functions such as investment management, investment banking, sales and trading, brokerage, financial




advising, etc. Assessing “fit” for a position usually involves questions you are familiar with such as “Tell me about yourself,” and “Why are you interested in working for our organization?” The technical questions will be specific to the finance area for which you are interviewing. For example, common questions for investment management might be “Tell me about your dream stock portfolio? What is your investment strategy? If you are given a market or an industry, what would be the steps to evaluate them?” The point here is to make sure that you have adequately reviewed the basic concepts of the area you are interviewing for and keep up to date on the literature in the field such as the Wall Street Journal and/or The Financial Times. It is especially important to review the financial news on the day of a finance interview. Finance interviews may also use case questions as part of their general interview format. Although the use of case questions in finance interviews varies depending on the employer, it is important to be prepared.

Case Interviews

insider tip

From Adam Borchert ’98, Manager, Bain & Company A case interview is a dialogue about a business problem derived from real-life business situations. During the course of the discussion, the interviewer and interviewee will collaboratively work through a number of qualitative and quantitative approaches to the business question. The discussion typically moves from identifying a critical issue, breaking the problem into component parts, and finally recommending one or more solutions. A consulting firm, such as Bain & Company, uses case interviews to see how you think about the types of business problems we work on each day. The best case interviews are thoughtful and collaborative dialogues about potential approaches to solve a tough business problem. We are not looking for a “right answer” or asking you to display knowledge of specific business terms, current events or well-known frameworks. Rather, we hope to see a good dose of analytical problem-solving skills, creativity, common sense and recommendations aimed at generating results for our clients. Finally, at Bain we believe a good case interview should be fun and thought provoking as it is very similar to discussions you would have daily as a member of our team.

The case question, inherent in many business and consulting interviews, is one way of determining whether a candidate has the aptitude for handling complex business problems. How a candidate answers a case question can reveal both the student’s ability to do the job and his or her desire to do so. Questions are sometimes drawn directly from the employer’s experience or can be crafted on the spot from news of the day. Most employers (and most interviewers) don’t expect in-depth business knowledge or high-level business terminology (there are exceptions, usually on the individual interviewer level). What they are looking for is whether the student has the analytical or problem-solving ability and the business sense to know what matters in a specific situation and the communication skills to explain and discuss it clearly. Most often, the employer verbally presents a business scenario to the candidate and asks how he/she would approach the problem. Sometimes, usually in later round interviews, some employers will present the candidate with a case study in print and allow the candidate a designated period of time to analyze the data either alone or in groups. If the case question is presented verbally, make sure you understand what is being asked of you. Reiterating the question is an effective way of confirming that you’re on the right track, but it also gives you a moment to think about the situation with which you are faced. Once you are sure you understand what has been presented, don’t be afraid to ask a few questions. A few clarifying questions may well save you from launching into an elaborate analysis that lacks focus and misses the point.



INTERVIEWS Case Interview Step by Step: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Repeat the question Ask clarifying questions Organize your thoughts Share your thoughts on how you are solving the problem with the interviewer Suggest solutions

In preparing to answer the case, don’t feel that you need to dive headfirst into immediate solutions. Remember that it’s not the solutions they’re looking for, it’s the analysis. They want to hear how you’re thinking about this problem. Organize your thoughts. Think of a systematic way to look at the evidence that has been presented to you. The case interview guidebooks offer a variety of frameworks and strategies that can be useful tools for organizing your thoughts, but none take the place of common sense. You may not have taken business courses at Harvard, but you most certainly learned how to use analysis and reasoning. Begin by talking about how you “might” want to look at the situation. Share your thoughts with the interviewer so that he/she can hear what you’re thinking about the broadest dimensions of the problem before you begin suggesting potential paths that you might follow in pursuit of a solution. Taking the time to introduce your approach allows the employer to see that you get the “big picture.” In a first-round interview it is unlikely that you will have time to proceed through all of the analysis that is necessary. Having scored you on understanding the scope of the problem and developing a strategy, the employer may very likely suggest that you spend the rest of your time on one area of the analysis. For example, “Let’s talk about the customer. How would you carry out that analysis?”

Preparation The case or finance interview is not something you want to try without careful preparation and practice. It is important for students interested in a consulting or finance career to take advantage of every opportunity to practice case and finance interviews. There are a variety of guidebooks available that offer helpful strategies for answering case and finance questions, many of which are available at OCS. Case and finance interview resources available at OCS include: Case Interview Resources: • Case in Point...Complete Case Interview Preparation • CQ Interactive on-line tool available at OCS • Vault Case Interview Practice Guide • WetFeet Press: Ace Your Case! series (online and in print) Finance Interview Resources: • Heard on The Street: Quantitative Questions from Wall Street Job Interviews • Vault Guide to Advanced Finance and Quantitative Interviews • Vault Guide to Finance Interviews • WetFeet Press: Beat the Street series (online and in print) OCS offers a number of opportunities to learn more about Case and Finance Interviewing and to practice these techniques. Refer to the calendar section of the OCS website for dates and times. It is also a good idea to practice with friends, members of business focused student groups and people you have connected with at the firms where you are applying. Writing Thank You Letters/Emails Thank you letters to each interviewer are strongly recommended. Sending thank you letters via email are usually sufficient because many employers make very quick decisions about whether a candidate should continue to the next round of their evaluation process. However, additional hand-written thank you notes can be a nice touch and a way to stand out, especially if you feel that your interviewer went out of his or her way to be helpful or informative. For OCI interviews, contact information for your interviewers will be available for you to collect before or after your interview at the interview location.




Second and Final Round Interviews Most employers will invite you to visit on-site for a second interview if you are a serious candidate for employment. This does not mean that you are assured an offer – preparation for the second and/or final interview is essential so that you can present yourself effectively. Feedback from both employers and students indicates that second-round interviews have become increasingly rigorous and increasingly important in evaluating you as a candidate. You should never assume that you will receive an offer until the employer officially extends it. If an employer invites you back to their site for second or third round interviews, you can generally expect a fairly full day of meetings with a range of potential colleagues and supervisors. Make sure you get the names and titles of people with whom you’ll be interviewing so that you are prepared. The interviews are likely to be similar to your first round, but more in depth and with more and more senior interviewers. Know that while you are a serious candidate if you’ve made it to this stage, every part of the day (including lunch and dinner) is evaluative. Especially in this economy, second round interviews are very important to employers because they do not want to hire someone for the summer or permanent employment that they do not feel is a real asset to the future of the organization. Remember that the decision-making process should be a two-way process. Think about the information you need about the job, employer, and working conditions to make an informed decision, and go into your interviews prepared to try to glean the knowledge you need to make an informed decision. If you decide to decline an invitation for a second interview, or if you have accepted a second round interview but cannot keep the appointment, please notify the employer promptly. Employers expect to be treated with the same courtesy they extend to you. Declining employers promptly with poise allows you to maintain a relationship with that organization and keep representatives in your professional network, even if you do not end up working for them.

On-Campus Interviews The On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) is not meant to be the single source of all employment opportunities. Remember that OCI is one tool among many that students should utilize in their search for jobs and internships. See “The Job Search” section of this publication, the OCS website, and come to OCS Drop-In Hours for more information about additional tools and resources. The vast majority of OCI employers choose to “pre-select” candidates. This means that they review (“pre-screen”) applicant materials in advance and only select a limited number of candidates for interviews. Employers interviewing on campus begin making decisions about candidates approximately five days after the application deadline. The decision time will vary from employer to employer, but we request that they make a decision no later than one week prior to the on campus visit date. When a decision has been made about your candidacy, you will be emailed, and your application status on Crimson Careers will change from “Pending” to “Invited,” “Not Invited,” or “Alternate.” If your status is still “Pending” by the interview date, you should consider your application declined.

On-Campus Interview Policy Only those students who have submitted materials and applied to employers through Crimson Careers may interview with employers when they visit Harvard. If you decide to submit your application materials to an employer outside of the On-Campus Interview Program, you will have to make separate arrangements to meet with the employer outside of our facilities.




Using Crimson Careers The “interviews” tab is only active on Crimson Careers if you have completed the On-Campus Interview Registration process by attending an orientation or taking the online tutorial and quiz. (See the On-Campus Interview Program 101 section of this Guide) There are two sub-tabs under the INTERVIEWS Tab: 1. OCI Applications 2. Scheduled Interviews

OCI APPLICATIONS sub-tab: This tab allows you to manage your applications to OCI positions. Each application will have a “Pending” status until the employer submits a decision. To review applications to non-OCI positions, navigate to the “jobs & internships” tab, and then to the “applications” sub-tab. Non-OCI employers will contact you directly by phone or by email if they would like to schedule you for an interview. Invited: If you are invited to an interview with that employer, an email will be sent to you reminding you to sign up for an interview. You will also see an alert at the bottom of your Crimson Careers homepage. NOTE: You must use your @fas, @college, or @post email address to access the Crimson Careers system. If you are having this email account forward to another account like gmail, be sure to double-check that you are not missing any important system messages by continuing to check your Harvard account while you are going through the OCI process. Email messages, such as interview sign-up alerts and reminders, are sent from Crimson Careers in a batch process and may be filtered as spam during the forwarding process. When you receive that invitation email, you should return to the “OCI Applications” sub-tab and the status of that application will be changed to “Invited.” You will also receive the option to sign up for an interview to the far right of that webpage. How to sign up for an interview? • Navigate to your “OCI Applications” sub-tab • Click “Schedule Interview” to the far right of the appropriate request • Select the radio button next to an available time slot and click SUBMIT • Email confirmation will be sent to you with date, time and location of interview. TIP: Please think carefully about the time slot that you pick. If you have multiple interviews in one day, do not schedule interviews back-to-back because interviews can run long, late, or may be in separate locations. Alternate: If you are accepted as an “Alternate” on Crimson Careers, you will be able to sign up for any remaining interview spots beginning at 12am, 3 days prior to the employer’s on-campus visit date. Alternates may sign up on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to check your email and on your Crimson Careers account to avoid missing an opportunity. Open Schedules: A few employers, most often non-profit organizations, choose to have one or more interview schedules “open.” This means that they employer does not wish to prescreen the candidate, and interested students may sign up for interviews on a first-come, first-served basis. The process to apply to open positions is the same as for any other position. The difference is that if there are openings on the employer’s schedule, the system will automatically select you as ”invited” to an interview, and you will be able to sign-up immediately. The deadline for applying to open schedules is 11:59pm two days prior to the interview date. Not Invited: You have been declined for an interview. You may want to send the employer contact one final follow-up email or phone call to reiterate your interest and qualifications, but this should be done sparingly and with sensitivity.



INTERVIEWS SCHEDULED INTERVIEWS sub-tab: This tab is where you can view upcoming interviews that you have already scheduled. You are responsible for attending all interviews listed on this webpage. Changing an interview time: Click on the “Reschedule Interview” button in the “scheduled interviews” sub-tab, and it will show you the interview slots that are available. Interview slots are available on a first come, first served basis. If there are no remaining interview slots that work with your schedule and you would like to see if there is anyone willing to switch timeslots with you, please contact the OCI Team for the contact information of other students on your interview schedule. If you have tried to switch timeslots and there are no times that work with your schedule: You may need to contact the employer and/or recruiter using the contact information on Crimson Careers to ask for their advice. Understand that you will most likely need to share information about your time conflict. Employers have spent a great deal of time and money scheduling their on-campus visits and are under no obligation to reschedule a first round interview. Second round interviews are not a legitimate reason to reschedule the first round interview (See Second Round Interview Policy). Please contact the OCI Office at 617-495-2598 if you have any more detailed questions. Interview Logistics: The date, time, duration, and location of your interview(s) will be emailed to you as a confirmation of your interview. You can also find this information from your Crimson Careers Interviews tab under “Scheduled Interviews.” Typically interviews take place between 9:30am-5:30pm, last 30 minutes to an hour, and take place at the OCS Interview Facility at 1033 Mass Avenue, 5th Floor. Due to high demand, interviews often also take place at the OCS Main Office at 54 Dunster Street or the Harvard Faculty Club. However, there are exceptions to all these criteria. You have a responsibility to attend every interview listed under the “Scheduled Interviews” sub-tab, to examine your schedule for conflicting interviews, and to check your @fas or @college email account for any updates or changes.

CANCELLATION POLICY Please check your schedule carefully to avoid conflicts. If you need to change your interview time or cancel an interview, you may do so using Crimson Careers as long as it is prior to 12:00am two calendar days before your interview date. If you must cancel your interview after that time, whether due to illness or an emergency, please contact the OnCampus Interview Office immediately so an alternate can have the opportunity to interview. Cancelling an interview with less than two days notice for a non-health related reason may result in restricted access to the On-Campus Interview Program. Students are not allowed to cancel a first round interview for a second or final round interview. See the Second Round Interview Policy for more details.

You may freely cancel an interview using Crimson Careers Anytime prior to 12am, 2 days before your interview date You must contact the OCI Office immediately Anytime after 12am, 2 days before your interview date



Not showing up for an interview is extremely disrespectful of an employer’s time, denies other Harvard candidates the opportunity to interview, and jeopardizes our positive relationship with recruiters. We take this offense very seriously, and will put a hold on your Crimson Careers account and prohibit you from applying to or signing up for any further on-campus interviews until you meet with the Director of the On-Campus Interview Program. A letter of explanation and apology to the recruiter involved must be written before reinstatement in the program. Failure to comply with the No Show Policy may result in your removal from the On-Campus Interview Program. In case of an emergency, explain your situation to someone in the OCI Office as soon as possible.

Employers and students must both follow the guidelines listed below when arranging second round interviews. Students are not permitted to cancel a first round interview to attend a second round.


FALL: NO 2nd Rounds can be conducted outside the Cambridge Area September 23 - September 30. Employers MUST give students at least 72-hour notice to leave the Cambridge Area after Friday, September 30. SPRING: NO 2nd Rounds can be conducted outside the Cambridge Area January 24 - February 3. Employers MUST give students at least 72-hour notice to leave the Cambridge Area after Friday, February 3. If you are having any problems with employers not abiding by these dates, please contact the On-Campus Interview Office at 617-495-2598.



offers The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




Offers Congratulations! You’ve received an offer. Now what? The following information will help you think about how to: • Prioritize the offers you have received, and those you are still working on. • Weigh job offers against other options such as graduate school and fellowships. • Evaluate and negotiate compensation packages.

Getting the Offer • Say thank you – Many employers will give an initial offer over the phone. Show gratitude that you were selected among many candidates and express your continued and sincere interest in the position. • Ask to get your offer in writing – To thoroughly consider an offer and compare it to others, you need to have access to the written details. Request the offer in writing when offered the position over the phone. Any employer should be able to mail or email the official documentation to you. • Keep in touch – Even if you need time to make a decision, it is essential to keep in touch with your contacts at the organization. It is reasonable for them to check in and see where you are in your decision-making process. • Be an ACTIVE decision-maker – To make an effective decision, you may need to speak to more people at an organization, negotiate some details of an offer, consult friends and family, and/or do some selfand career-assessment regarding your current and future goals. While you should be given time to make a thoughtful decision, you also have a responsibility to use your time wisely and not wait until the last minute.

Self-Assessment Making decisions requires self-assessment to determine what direction you want to take. Before making a decision, ask yourself the following questions: • • • •

Where do I see myself every day for the next year or two? What skills do I want to use? What do I want to learn and what will make me happy or satisfied? How do I want to make an impact?

The goal is to reach a decision that is consistent with who you are and what you hope to achieve. This is true whether you are comparing job offers, graduate programs, or fellowships for post-graduate study or travel and weighing these against one or more other offers. The decision to accept a job or other career option is a very personal one, and often involves talking to lots of people and both listening to your gut and taking a leap of faith.




Assessment When considering job offers, also ask yourself: • What are the potential paths that could follow after accepting the position? What will I learn from this job? Where could those skills and experiences take me in the future? • Do I like and respect my potential coworkers? Do I feel comfortable with the culture of the organization? Do people seem happy working there? • Will I have the opportunity to meet new people in the field, and expand my network of professional connections? • Am I happy with the job location, in terms of cost of living, climate, proximity to family, and opportunities for social life or cultural activities?

advice from president drew faust “You are at a moment of transition that requires making choices. And selecting one option – a job, a career, a graduate program – means not selecting others. Every decision means loss as well as gain—possibilities foregone as well as possibilities embraced...if you don’t try to do what you love—whether it is painting or biology or finance; if you don’t pursue what you think will be most meaningful, you will regret it. Life is long. There is always time for Plan B. But don’t begin with it.” —Drew Faust, 2008 Baccalaureate Address

Once You Make a Decision Decline Offers When you know you are no longer interested in an employer, withdraw from the applicant pool or decline their offer as soon as possible. Interviewing with or holding onto an offer with an employer that does not interest you wastes your time, wastes the employer’s time, may impact other students who are hoping for that opportunity, and may damage your own professional reputation. You can decline an offer over the phone, but be sure to reiterate your appreciation as you do so. You should also follow up with any person at the organization who you’ve come to know during the job search process. Do not leave a voicemail message to decline an offer. If the contact person is not available, leave a message for them to call you back.

Accept an Offer You can accept an offer with an employer over the phone, but be sure to follow any instructions that they provide via email or mail. There is often a fair amount of paperwork that takes place to make you an official member of the team.

Remember, It’s A Small World In all your interactions with employers, always be polite, professional, and respectful of people’s time. Even if you ultimately decide not to work with a particular employer, you never know when your professional paths may cross again. It is in your best interest to keep the people you meet during the job search process in your network. A strong network is the best job security and vital to your own professional development.




What To Do ... If...


You received an offer that you are really excited about ...

Don’t delay! There is no reason to drag out the process if you have received an offer you are happy with. Examine the details of the written offer, clarify or negotiate if necessary, and accept in a timely manner. After you accept, be sure to decline any other outstanding offers.

You have multiple offers, but none stand out as the best choice ...

Even if you are unsure which option is best, do not wait until you have all possible offers in hand to start making decisions. You should be actively evaluating options against each other and your ideal and not hold more than two or three offers at a time. Declining offers in a timely manner helps you maintain good relationships with employers, even if you decide not to work for them. It is respectful of their time and allows them to give an offer to someone else.

You have an offer, but you want to hold out for something else ...

It is acceptable to ask an employer for more time to make a decision on an offer, but don’t do so unprepared. Have a realistic sense of how much time you need and always express appreciation and enthusiasm for the existing offer. If you are granted more time, be sure to call the other employer and let them know you have an offer pending. If they really want you, they may be able to speed up the process. Also be prepared for what you will do if the employer does not give you more time.

You accepted an offer, but something better has come along ...

Once you have accepted an offer, you have given a good-faith commitment to honor it. Reneging on an offer is a breach of your agreement, can jeopardize your professional reputation, and can damage Harvard’s relationship with that organization. However, you can initiate honest and open communication with your employer for advice and counsel. Stop by OCS Drop-In Hours or make an appointment with an OCS counselor to discuss your options.

Salary While compensation shouldn’t be the sole focus of your analysis, it is an essential component of any job decision. Keep in mind that if you are looking at more than one type of job, you may be looking at different sets of numbers. One cannot compare, for instance, an entry level position in publishing with one in consulting. The starting salaries for these fields are simply too different, but each may teach you a lot and lead to other interesting opportunities. Many websites offer a combination of salary data by job title, industry, and/or field, as well as salary calculators to help determine how salaries may be affected by cost of living in different geographic regions. Here are a few examples: • • • NACE Salary Calculator at salary-calculator-intro/


Also remember that compensation includes more than base salary. Bonuses and Benefits may seem like a minor piece of the puzzle, but they can come with a considerable price tag once you begin paying the bills. Benefits to consider include: • Bonus Structure (Yearly, Performance-Based, etc.) • Stock Options or Profit Sharing • Paid Leave (Vacation Time, Sick Time, and Personal Days) • 401K or Other Retirement Saving • Education Benefits • Relocation Benefits • Health, Life, and Disability Insurance



Making a Commitment As you are making this immediate career decision, think about where it will lead you. While this may well be your first full-time job or career decision, it most certainly will not be your last. Barring unforeseen circumstances, you should expect to stay in your first job for approximately two years. It will take time for you to gain both the quantity and quality of experience to use as leverage for your next career evolution.

Negotiating Think carefully before negotiating a job offer and actively seek outside benchmarks and guidance from industry research, your personal and professional network, and resources at the OCS. Competitive organizations usually offer a set package that is identical to those offered to all new hires. Unless you offer something significant in terms of additional, relevant education or experience over and above other candidates receiving an offer, it is unlikely that you will be able to negotiate additional monetary compensation. This is especially true in a down economy, when many organizations have frozen salaries or reduced staff. Most importantly, never accept an offer and continue looking for additional opportunities. This strategy is considered an egregious breach of ethics, and can seriously harm your reputation in your chosen field. Employers in competitive fields worry about this practice to the extent that it is not unheard of for a firm to rescind an offer if they find out that you have already accepted one from another organization. Keep in mind that people within fields usually know one another and have been known to compare notes. Similarly, employers often self-police the practice of reneging on offers by rescinding any offer to a candidate who has reneged with another firm. If an opportunity has come along that you would like to pursue after you have accepted a job offer, seek advice from OCS and contact the employer that has made you the offer, let them know about the situation, and ask their advice.

Always • Research the industry to best represent yourself during negotiation • Get advice from recent alums, professionals in the field, OCS counselors, and family members • Know what your dealmaking and deal-breaking factors are ahead of time Never • Never wait until the last minute to negotiate • Never misrepresent yourself or a competing offer in any way • Never get confrontational and always behave professionally

Maintain Relationships When you ultimately come to a conclusion, it is important to remember that it is a small world. The opportunity you don’t take today may well be right for you in a few years. Being as gracious when declining an offer as you are when accepting one can go a long way towards building a network of contacts that will stay with you a lifetime. Finally, trust yourself. In the end, only you can decide whether or not a job is right for you.




On Campus Interview Offers Students need to be aware that many employers in the On-Campus Interview Program (OCI) have a very short timeline from when first round interviews start to when offers are made to candidates. Sometimes students feel pressured by employers to accept an offer quickly. If a time frame is not within our constraints stated in the OCI Offer Policy, please contact the On-Campus Interview Office and we will help negotiate the correct amount of time needed to make the decision. Often the person making the offer is simply not aware of our Offer Policy.

On-Campus Interview Program Offer Policy In order for students to make effective decisions, they must explore as many of the options open to them as possible. At the same time, students are expected to be active decision makers, avoid waiting until the last minute, and honor commitments and agreements that they make during the on-campus interview process. All companies participating in the On-Campus Interview Program (which includes all interviews conducted offcampus with students whose resumes have come to through OCI) must follow this timetable:

Full-Time Hiring Offer Timetable Date of Offer


Offers resulting from previous summer internship obtained through OCI

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Offers resulting from Fall OCI

Thursday, December 1, 2011 or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)

Offers resulting from Spring OCI

Thursday, March 1, 2012 or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)

Internship Hiring Offer Timetable Date of Offer


Offers resulting from previous summer internship obtained through OCI

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Offers resulting from Spring OCI

Thursday, March 1, 2012 or 3 weeks from Date of Offer (whichever is LATER)




No Exploding Offers. We expect employers to honor all offers made to students and that no conditions will be placed on the offer (e.g., “We have 10 offers outstanding for 8 openings and will accept the first 8 students who get back to us,” etc.). No financial incentive (e.g., “We will provide a $5,000 bonus if you sign today,” etc.) may be offered to induce students to accept offers early. Students should always insist on receiving offers in writing. Please examine the contract you sign very carefully. Students who renege on offers after both parties have signed will be denied future access to the On-Campus Interview Program. Reneging on a Job Offer is considered an egregious breach of ethics and will create an adverse relationship not only between you and the employer, but also between the employer and Harvard. Students who do renege on a job offer will have their Crimson Careers account blocked immediately and will have to meet with the Director of the On-Campus Interview Program. If an opportunity has come along that you would like to pursue after you have accepted a job offer, consult OCS and contact the employer that has made you the offer. Let them know about the situation and ask their advice.

Get Offer Help at OCS • Offers and Decisions Workshops: −− Wednesday, October 19th, 4pm @ OCS −− Friday, November 16th, 4pm @ OCS • Check the OCS Google Calendars for updates and additions. • OCS Drop-Ins. −− Monday – Friday, 1 - 4pm @ OCS Whatever you choose to pursue after graduation, be it graduate or professional school, a fellowship, a for-profit, not-for-profit, higher education or government position, enjoy the new learning opportunity. Remember to continue to build your professional connections along the way. Your professional network, including OCS and your Harvard connections, will help guide you to the next opportunity and support you as you make the most of your Harvard education in the world.




INDUSTRy profiles The Harvard Guide to Your Job Search




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A Global Impact When I tell someone that I work for Abercrombie & Fitch, their first question is usually “Which store?” They are often surprised to learn that I work at the corporate headquarters instead of the mall. Many people think of the retail industry only in terms of the finished product, artfully presented and ready for purchase. However in the eyes of a merchant, the in-store presentation of the final product represents only a small piece of an extensive lifecycle that we manage each day. Retail merchandising gives recent graduates an exceptional sense of ownership in their work from day one. Each merchant works within a specific product category such as sweaters or accessories managing everything from the individual details of each style to the top level analysis of your category’s position within the market. The demands of the business require merchants to be efficient and adaptable in a fast paced environment. We are constantly seeking new information about our product, competition and consumer. In preparation for each season, merchants collaborate with the conceptual team to identify emerging trends and partner with our designers to interpret the trends in a way that is appropriate for our brands. For our project we were challenged to come up with fresh “green” humor that was also evocative of Abercrombie’s heritage. Market research in the form of competitive shopping and consumer survey is a key part of the merchant position. We were able to focus group our ideas as part of the process and get valuable feedback from our customer base before finalizing our designs. As the “hub” of the production wheel, the merchant is responsible for communicating the needs of the business not only to design but also to the planning, sourcing (our supplier and factory liaison), and allocation teams. We worked with these groups throughout the course of the project establishing how merchants influence the product at each stage of the development cycle. At the completion of our project, the shirts were sent to select stores around the country. I had the honor of having my slogan chosen for my team’s

t-shirt. However we quickly learned that the shirt color plays as equal a role as message, garment feel and fit in generating sales. Unfortunately for us, dark green proved to be the least salable color to our customer. The team whose shirt drove the most sales volume in test stores had their tee (“Save Energy, Let’s Make Our Own Heat”) sent into bulk production and rolled out all stores. The strengths of the training program are demonstrated by our ability to make an impact on the business immediately through real-life work scenarios. I love the global nature of the retail business, and because of my background in foreign language it was important for me to have the opportunity for international exposure on a consistent basis. A&F’s business is international on multiple levels. Everyday I correspond with my overseas vendor contacts. They are not only business partners but also friends. Between cost negotiations and production timelines, we discuss our lives and sometimes exchange small gifts that are representative of out local cultures. The future of our brands is focused on our international expansion. What began with the 2007 opening of our London flagship store on Savile Row will continue as the company plans to expand further into the UK market and in three additional international cities during the coming year; the Ginza district of Tokyo, Milan, and Copenhagen. It is exciting to be part of the company as we broaden the audience of our brands, push the boundaries of scale and learn from a developing market. The benefit of working with a tangible product is that our successes are easily measurable. It is exciting to watch your product grow from idea to reality but the most satisfying aspect of the job is to see your work walk down the street, in a magazine, or even on the big screen (as was the experience of one of my coworkers). Harvard trains its students to be hardworking, intellectually curious, and entrepreneurial; all qualities of a successful merchant. Retail merchandising at A&F provides an environment that capitalizes on and rewards these skills on a daily basis.


Joanna Miller ’08 Abercrombie and Fitch


you have talents. we have options. INDUSTRIES



leader problem

solver For more details visit our website



Morgan Stanley is an equal opportunity employer committed to workforce diversity. (M/F/D/V) © 2011 Morgan Stanley



The ‘Sexiness’ of Strategy Why choose a job in Corporate Strategy? Why choose a job in a company rather than at a service firm such as an investment bank or consulting firm? What sort of experience can you expect to gain in Corporate Strategy? After undergraduate I was only considering investment banking and consulting. In fact, taking a job at a large corporation was not on my radar screen. What I found is that a job actually working at a company in Corporate Strategy can offer many things other jobs cannot. In Corporate Strategy one gets exposure to the long term growth challenges of a company. Companies can achieve long term growth through several means: mergers and acquisitions, new business development, new market entry, or helping existing businesses grow faster. In Corporate Strategy, one is frequently exposed to projects relating to all these. In addition, one gains exposure to the operating side of the business and to senior decision makers in the company. With respect to M&A, nearly all opportunities to acquire or merge with another company are pursued through Corporate Strategy. Analysts in Corporate Strategy gain experience analyzing company performance, performing company valuations, putting together deal term sheets, and managing the buy or sell process. Working for the company itself means that there is no “pitch work”, as all opportunities under consideration are realistic possibilities. New business development is another very exciting aspect of Corporate Strategy. In this area, our work is very much like that of consultants. Developing and launching any new business requires developing an idea and analyzing its feasibility. This typically includes assessing an industry for possible entry, evaluating the company’s potential competitive advantage, and performing rigorous financial analysis to estimate the economic potential of any new venture. In many ways, this is the “sexiest” strategy work. The advantage of working on such projects as part of a

Corporate Strategy Department rather than as an outside advisor is that you live with your decisions. You continue to work in the company as it operates the businesses you analyze, recommend, and bring to fruition. You are in a position to influence implementation actively. Exploring opportunities to expand businesses into new markets is yet another facet of Corporate Strategy. These types of projects can be quite challenging and exciting. One must consider how concepts and businesses that may thrive in the United States can best be translated overseas. This involves assessing the best markets for expansion, the necessary changes to the business model, and the economic impact of launching in a new market. Through this work one gains an understanding of the subtleties of doing business in different countries and exposure to today’s global marketplace. Lastly, there is always potential to grow a company’s existing businesses faster. In Corporate Strategy one may consider pricing or distribution alternatives, structural reorganization or efficiency enhancement. Depending on the health of a company’s businesses, this may offer complex and diverse challenges. Where does a job in Corporate Strategy lead? It is excellent preparation for business school and beyond. Experience in Corporate Strategy can easily transition into a job at the operating level of the corporation. Additionally, the business, financial, and analytical expertise gained is applicable across industries and across functions and will be well-regarded in the marketplace. A job in Corporate Strategy can offer an exciting opportunity to work within a company, gain experience in a wide variety of projects including transaction-oriented work, long-term growth strategy, and new business development. In an exciting company, in an exciting industry, Corporate Strategy offers a wide array of valuable experience, and an excellent place to start your career in business.


Elaine Paul, HBS ’94 Senior Vice President The Walt Disney Company



We invite all Juniors and Seniors to attend: Fall Presentation Date: Time: Place:

Thursday, September 1st, 2011 8:00 p.m. Charles Hotel

Career Forum Date: Ti Time: Place

Friday, September 9th, 2011 1 30 – 4:00 1:30 4 00 p.m. Sheraton Commander

Case Interview Workshop Date: Time: Pl Place:

Tuesday, September 20th, 2011 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. S i Science Center C t Hall H ll A

First round interviews will be held on October 13th at the Harvard Interviewing Facility. Please check with OCS for additional Bain events this fall.





You Do What? When I began the interviewing process as a Harvard senior, like many other undergrads aspiring to land a position in management consulting, I wanted to know what it meant to be a consultant. So, I asked. I asked the question of on-campus firm representatives. I asked my interviewers. I asked older friends who had acquired positions when I was still trying to find the hidden gem that is Hemingway gym. The funny thing is that I never heard a consistent answer that concisely described what impact I would create in the world. And as expected, when I was posed the same question by undergrads throughout my first few years with Bain, I fumbled with my words to deliver a consistent message. It was not until recently that I solidified my personal point of view. I had been exposed to Bain’s recruiting literature for years. I knew all along that “Bain’s clients outperform the market 4 to 1”; that Bain operates in every financial market on the globe working with clients across industries to deliver “results” and not reports; that everyone associated with the firm used the words “adding value” as frequently as “hello” and “good-bye.” Finally, I knew of the firm’s commitment to the non-profit sector and community impact groups. What I didn’t know was how to synthesize everything I heard and knew. My thoughts finally crystallized when I was explaining what I do to my 15-year-old brother. In many ways, he was the perfect conduit for my discovery. He doesn’t know the first thing about business, he is sufficiently curious and intelligent to probe for the truth, and most importantly, he is sufficiently stubborn to keep his older brother on his proverbial toes. In the end, I think I developed a one-liner that I am proud of. When asked what I do as a Bain consultant, I now say “I create value for organizations and the people they impact.” Well, what does that mean? Bain consultants create value at corporations and other financial institutions on a daily basis by delivering results-oriented work. Over the past

three years, I have been exposed to a lot... I have used phone and survey-based primary research to develop a refreshed perspective on customer segmentation for an industrial distributor with an unloyal customer base. I have built a financial model to predict the impact of launching a new product for a global food manufacturer. I have facilitated workshops with cross-functional client stakeholders to drive consensus on future organizational design for a Sydney-based financial services provider during a six month Australian transfer. I have even participated in management-level discussions for private equity buyers considering targets in the most arcane of markets. In all of these cases, we created value for which direct impacts are seen everyday. Stock price increases reflect company earnings improvements and drive shareholder returns. Articles in the Wall Street Journal comment on M&A transactions in which we played a key role. New product launches inflate revenues via increased customer satisfaction. Improved organizational tactics create more productive, satisfying, and empowering careers. And simple “thank yous” make us feel great. It’s clear that the value we create benefits both our clients and the people they impact, including us! Bain consultants also create value outside the corporate sphere in the non-profit sector. We regularly perform formal pro-bono consulting services to non-profit organizations posed with difficult strategic questions. Examples include a recent growth strategy for the Boys & Girls Club of Boston and a litany of projects with organizations like City Year and Cradles to Crayons. Additionally, a number of my colleagues have taken the opportunity to spend six months at The Bridgespan Group, a non-profit consulting firm founded by a group of Bain partners. Regarded as an equally challenging and rewarding experience, Bridgespan, like Bain, enables consultants to apply the skills they’ve cultivated to compelling social causes. Finally,


Frank Ferrante ’06 Bain and Company




Bain supports members of its consulting staff that go on to pursue non-profit careers, a track that is becoming increasingly popular among the consulting staff ranks. To illustrate the trend, an associate consultant colleague and friend or mine recently went on to become the Director of Operations for a prestigious charter school in New York. The most refreshing aspect of our non-profit commitment is not necessarily the value created directly in the organizations with whom we partner; once again, it is the broader impact on communities, schools, and children that compel so many Bainees to continually seek out these wonderful opportunities.

In the next 12 months, I plan to attend an MBA program (hopefully!) like many of my colleagues before me. Although I ultimately plan to return to Bain, I am not sure where I will settle in permanently. The one thing I can guarantee, however, is that I will continue to create value wherever I may go. Global training programs, invaluable business experience, an exceptional peer network, and a thoughtful approach to problem solving have honed in me a unique and powerful skill set apt for creating change and lasting impact anywhere. I am lucky to have had the opportunity to begin my career with Bain. Those my colleagues and I touch will be lucky too.

Take a Lead Role in Growth Equity As an Associate at Summit Partners, you will lead our effort to identify attractive industry sectors and exceptional companies for investment. If you are a high-energy team player dedicated to success and looking for a career challenge, we want to talk with you. 2011 Finance Boutique Night Wednesday, September 7, 2011 4:00–6:00 pm: General Session Harvard Faculty Club Interviews will be held on Tuesday, October 18, 2011. Please check with OCS for details about interviews and the Summit Partners presentation at the Finance Boutique Night. Summit Partners is a growth equity firm that makes private equity and venture capital investments in rapidly growing companies. Since 1984, we have raised more than $11 billion in capital and invested in more than 330 growing companies across North America, Europe and Asia. These companies have completed 125 public offerings and in excess of 130 strategic sales or mergers.





Rewarding Service In November 2008, I arrived in Kenya to a country full of citizens claiming “Obama ni yetu” (Obama is ours) who were excited to discuss with any American they could find the recent presidential election and, consequently, their reinvigorated hope for the world. Admittedly, the timing of my arrival in Kenya could not have been better. Despite the newness of Obama’s victory having worn off, in the nine months that have followed my arrival, Kenyans have never failed to treat me kindly or faltered in their excitement to share cultural ideas. I have felt so welcomed that they might as well have been saying “Emily ni yetu.” Throughout the year, I have been working in Kenya as a secondary school math and biology teacher through the United States Peace Corps. While on any given day my experiences can run the emotional gamut, I have not once doubted my decision to serve as a volunteer. Since arriving in Kenya, I have gotten the opportunity to discover as much about myself as I have discovered about this new culture of which I have become a part. I have learned the challenges and rewards of a profession in education, some that apply globally and some that are specific to Kenya. I have forged new friendships, whether they are with fellow Peace Corps Volunteers, teachers I spend a majority of my week with, or the mama I buy my produce from who patiently deciphers my incomprehensible use of the local tribal language. At times I feel that I have lived more in the past nine months than I have in my previous 22 years.

If you are thinking about serving as a volunteer overseas, you owe it to yourself to try. The people you meet should make you smile, might make you cry, and will definitely take you in as one of their own. You will experience cultural differences that reinforce that you are thousands of miles from home while simultaneously feel welcomed by people who act as a surrogate family. While the work you do might not save the world, you will learn a lot about it and about yourself, too. If you are looking for a structured way in which to volunteer overseas, then the Peace Corps could be for you. It is an established program that knows how to look out for the safety of its volunteers while also giving them the independence and flexibility to assist their communities in the manner the volunteers identify as being most appropriate. Upon arriving in the country, Peace Corps is helpful in cultural adjustment, setting up a two-month home stay and training you in the local language(s) to ease your integration into the country in which you are serving. With the structure that Peace Corps offers come certain rules that must be followed, but these rules are generally justifiable and are instituted for the safety of the volunteer. For the most part, Peace Corps gives you the tools to be an effective volunteer, but the responsibility is on you to use them. So if you want to learn about the world and about yourself, consider serving abroad. If you want to serve with an established organization, join the Peace Corps.


Emily Baker ’08 Peace Corps




A Passion for Entertainment

Felipe Tewes ’06 Manager of Film Programming HBO


As I began making the career fair rounds my senior year, I faced a daunting realization. One glimpse at the case study method books and a handful of conversations with fatigued alumni made it clear that, in contrast with the general mentality of consulting and banking as viable, accessible options, securing any job, not to mention carrying it out post-graduation, was an arduous prospect. If I was going to be climbing uphill, why not choose a path that aligned with my personal interests? I dedicated my senior year to tackling the shroud of mystery that surrounds the entertainment industry, by conducting research and informational interviews (using the alumni directory), as well as participating in programs such as Harvardwood 101, a great introduction to the various segments of the industry through a week long trip to L.A. during January. Harvardwood is a global organization for Harvard students, alumni, faculty and staff in the arts, media and entertainment (www.harvardwood. org). The Catch-22 in entertainment is that most “entry-level” (assistant) jobs require one or two years of experience. Often the only initial option is an unpaid internship, which was not feasible for me. Several people pointed me in the direction of the talent agencies, not only because, due to their central position, they serve as a “grad school” for the business, but also because they wisely open their doors to entry-level candidates, knowing that they will serve as a wide network down the line. I was accepted into the agent training program (also known as “the Mailroom”) at the William Morris Agency (now William Morris Endeavor) the summer after graduation. WMA not only served as assistant boot camp, but it provided me with a top-notch “desk experience” qualification on my resume, as well as a network of peers that struggled through those first years together with me and still serve as contacts and friends. There is, of course, a mail cart involved for the first couple of months, but the access to scripts, materials, and individuals is unparalleled. Above all, you are trained to work entrepreneurially, even within a company, to secure each next step – the best preparation you can receive for a career in entertainment. I soon applied for and was offered a job at Focus Features, as the executive assistant to the CEO. The actual duties were unquestionably administrative, but the access to a heavy flow of information on

production and distribution, as well as to the individuals within the organization, was crucial to my growing knowledge of the business. The position required great dedication and organization, but above all the ability to work well and respectfully with colleagues and contacts. I quickly learned that, in a business that is often unquantifiable and that depends in great part on connections, the best asset you can develop is a strong reputation. I served as an assistant for over two years, which allowed me to recently join HBO as a Manager in Film Programming, focusing on the acquisition of Latin American and/or Spanish-language films for the network. I receive submissions from sales agents and other representation, travel the festival circuit, and actively reach out to rising filmmakers to find the needles in a haystack. The world of acquisitions can serve as great exposure to the wealth of material that is being produced, and is not as strictly based in Los Angeles as production is. It is worth mentioning that working in the industry as it currently stands more often than not requires a West Coast rotation. Simply put, these career paths require flexibility and pursuing opportunity where it arises, and opportunity tends to arise more often in the Pacific Time Zone. If I can offer one piece of advice in an industry that lacks a stable, determined path, it is to view each experience as an independent learning opportunity. It is overwhelming to approach each new commitment as merely a step to the next, a mentality far too prevalent in the entry-level and assistant phase. There certainly is a “pay your dues” culture that will test your patience, but there is much to be learned while doing so that is necessary before stepping into roles with the burden of greater accountability. An executive I knew began his seminar for the interns each semester with one piece of advice: “Do not work in the film industry.” He then followed up with, “if you can imagine nothing but working in film for the rest of your life, in spite of my advice, then let’s talk.” There are certainly better-paid career tracks with higher likelihoods for “success,” or fields where a Harvard degree will place you in better entry-level positions. However, if entertainment is a passion of yours that you would like to explore, and you come armed with patience and perspective, then do not let the shroud of mystery that surrounds it keep you from what could potentially be an exciting and fulfilling career.




Turning the Ship Nonprofits totally don’t have their act together. Inefficiency and corruption run rampant. Their finances are a mess, they have no idea whether or not they’re having an impact, they lack polish and a basic understanding of business. Or not. Almost 10% of the US workforce is employed by the nonprofit sector according to the Congressional Research Service; roughly the same number of Americans work in manufacturing. According to the Government Accountability Office, as much as 5% of the US GDP was produced by the nonprofit sector. Nonprofits take on incredibly lofty goals – such as reforming education, ending homelessness, and making policy changes—with extraordinarily limited resources. While for-profits only have one customer to serve (if they create the right product and set the right price they have the funding they need to operate), nonprofits have two customers: the end beneficiary and the people paying for the service (typically government or other funders.) Many people interested in nonprofit consulting believe that bringing a corporate approach to nonprofits is what will “save them.” Yet the central two premises of consulting have always been: 1. In organizational life, certain tasks have a learning curve associated with them, and a consultant can provide expertise by dint of having done that task repeatedly and having learned and improved the process. 2. Many managers would love to get their hands on certain kinds of data or learn more about what others are doing in the field, but lack the time and resources to do so. Approaching any consulting engagement with the idea that you will fix the client will not lead to successful implementation in the long run. Good consulting, whether for-profit or nonprofit, asks the consultant to put him or herself at the service of the client and provide data to illuminate the choices facing the client. I didn’t plan to spend most of my time at Harvard focused on public service, but found that I loved the people I interacted with, and my average day had far more variety than most people’s. I ended up becoming the president of

Phillips Brooks House Association and many of the students and staff I worked with then remain my most trusted colleagues and mentors – some have even become clients! After graduating, I went to the national office of Big Brothers Big Sisters, an organization with over a century of history, a powerful brand, incredibly talented local leaders across the country, and a client roster of over 200,000 young people. I learned there that conversations about nonprofit strategy often take place in the fundraising office. Two of my mentors there who had long careers in the for-profit world advised me to go to business school and focus on more quantitative subjects like operations and finance, which brought me to Columbia Business School. While there, I consulted at a number of education reform organizations in New York City on fundraising and marketing messaging to financially support myself. Many of my business school classmates were interested in nonprofit consulting and strategy, but found it difficult to translate that interest into a concrete list of jobs to apply to! I remember very clearly when, as VP of Careers for the business school’s Social Enterprise Club, I hosted an info session by Bridgespan and 70 people turned out. I knew that only five or ten, max, would get interviews, and if one or two got offers we’d be lucky. I also knew that there weren’t any other companies that I could invite (at the time) to direct the remainder of the attendees to! After graduation, I moved to Boston to join the headquarters of Bridgespan, a relatively large nonprofit consulting firm founded and still connected to Bain. Most of my clients there were large foundations exploring a new potential area of giving or looking to realign their giving with their intended impact. There’s a classic analogy that some people like to work in kayaks – small, agile organizations with few people on board but who can turn quickly—and others like to work on cruise ships – hard to turn and slow-moving, but with far more people on board. Consulting can sometimes make you feel like you’re in a liferaft with a megaphone trying to tell the cruise ship where to go! While I truly loved the clients that I met and I valued the training that I got there, I also saw that very few, if any, recommendations that we made


Laura Clancy ’03 Vice President/Chief of Staff Achievement First




were getting implemented three, six or twelve months out. We’d spend hours and hours at our cubicles painstakingly crafting 100+ slide Powerpoint presentations, but really what many executives wanted was a few new insights about data they hadn’t seen yet and ideas for what they could be doing differently. And what many executive directors pointed to as a major barrier for implementation was being shorthanded. I then moved to New Sector Alliance to become its Managing Director and Boston Executive Director. New Sector has for many years offered low-cost, high-quality consulting services, as well as an AmeriCorps program that recruits bright young people out of college from across the country and

places them into year-long capacity building projects at Boston and San Francisco Bay Area nonprofits. Because of funding for AmeriCorps and the limited time duration of the program, nonprofit leaders can access top talent at an affordable price for them. And because of the economies of scale we’re able to realize, program participants get a foot in the door at terrific nonprofits and get support from our staff, their peers and mentors that we recruit from the management consulting industry. There are many people interested in nonprofit consulting, but there are only a few larger shops. There are far more opportunities working as an “intrapreneur” within exciting nonprofits. And as further evidence of that, I’ve since moved to NYC for my spouse and


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taken on a new role at Achievement First, a large charter management organization, as VP/Chief of Staff. In my role, I’m helping our rapidly growing organization to stay happy, healthy and sustainable, and I constantly find myself drawing on the consulting toolkit. I’m also surrounded by ex-consultants (from places like McKinsey and BCG) who’ve decided to move into operating roles as well. In our trainings, we stress the importance of humility – that they will best be serving nonprofits by deeply listening, doing what’s needed, and providing data to illuminate the client’s choices. That’s what consulting comes down to—strategic clarity, whether that’s achieved through huge models in Excel or by simply focusing.

Join the Trinity Team “Trinity’s vision is to be the leading partner to the life sciences industry. We enable our client’s success through innovative insights and solutions”

Associate Consultant Opportunities - We are seeking talented, committed and entrepreneurial individuals to join our team. At Trinity, Associate Consultants work as integral parts of one or more project teams comprised of skilled colleagues and management team members. This environment provides Associate Consultants with exposure to a wide variety of strategic business issues, as well as the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge of the life sciences industry. To learn more about Trinity Partners please visit us on campus at: Harvard Career Forum Consulting Boutique Night AMBLE Consulting Conference Mock Interview Marathon Resume Drop


September 9 th September 16 th September 16 st September 21 st September 21




All You Need Is a Skill It was once said that those who cannot do, teach. The idea behind this saying was that teachers do not produce anything tangible. The belief was that people go into teaching because they do not possess skills that are truly useful, or because they just couldn’t make it in more demanding professions. The education reform movement in America is looking to change this long-standing intransigent view. Many efforts have been made to professionalize the teaching workforce, finding more efficient ways to recruit, train, and retain teachers. In addition, many resources have been spent attempting to restructure school districts, introduce charter schools, and reduce class sizes so that teachers can make deeper connections with students. However, not many people are working to fundamentally change our views on who teaches and how. When I was a teenager I developed a passion for helping people find fulfilling next steps in their life journey. As a junior at my small Maryland high school, I displayed that passion in placing small pins on a large U.S. map of all the places where our seniors had gotten into college. When I arrived at college myself, I evolved that passion into helping my peers find fulfilling careers. I worked on raising awareness of the variety of career options available to students, particularly in the nonprofit and social sector. It was through that work that I learned more about education reform and the exciting opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom. By the time I was a senior, I was convinced that I wanted to enter education, but I wasn’t sure about being a full-time teacher in a classroom or a full-time grant writer in an office for a nonprofit focused on education reform. I discovered Citizen Schools through the Center for Public Interest Careers and was drawn by its unique approach to reforming education in America. Citizen Schools seeks to redefine and expand the parameters of both the school day and who teaches in the classroom. Instead of having students attend classes for just six hours a day, Citizen Schools partners with middle schools and school districts to expand the learning day by three hours, giving middle school students time to work on their academics in a hands-on

environment, while introducing and reinforcing concepts such as college access. Beyond traditional extended-day programming, Citizen Schools brings professionals into the classroom as volunteer Citizen Teachers to teach apprenticeships. Students work on a semester-long project with their Citizen Teachers to develop final products, ranging from making robots with Google engineers to designing menus and business models with b.good managers in Harvard Square. All of this is to expose students to next step opportunities they can pursue. For me, working as a National Teaching Fellow for Citizen Schools was the perfect opportunity. For two years, I got to teach my own classes in the afternoon while training Citizen Teachers on how to best transmit their careers in engaging fun ways for middle school students. In addition, I managed multiple projects in the morning to improve staffing support for all the Teaching Fellows throughout the entire national organization. I wasn’t only teaching; I was working behind the scenes to see how we could better implement our model around the country. In doing so, I got multiple perspectives on all the work there is to do in education reform and I developed a better idea of how I wanted to contribute after the Fellowship. The bonus is that I did all of this while constantly pursuing my passion of helping others find fulfilling next steps, whether it was my 6th grade class, Google engineer Citizen Teachers, or my peers at Citizen Schools. From my time as a National Teaching Fellow for Citizen Schools, I now know that the debate over education reform is too narrow. The parameters are too small. To reform education, we need to involve more than just our traditional classroom teachers. From experience, I can say that teaching is very demanding and our teachers don’t have enough time in the day to close the achievement and opportunity gaps by themselves. It involves all of us going into classrooms and teaching what we know. Teachers do so much more than teach; they teach others how to do by doing it themselves. That is what an apprenticeship is. Everyone can teach. All you need is a skill. What will you teach?


Philip Parham ’09 Citizen Schools




Starting a Company

Roger Lee ’08 Co-Founter, President Paper G


Like many applied math/economics concentrators, by senior year I had explored investment banking and consulting. However, I decided to pursue a different path – I started a technology startup called PaperG. It was the best decision I ever made. Entrepreneurship allows you to make a difference in the world in a way that most jobs rarely can, especially the ones typically available to college graduates. As an entrepreneur, you have the ability to create something from nothing, to build a product or service of lasting value with people you love. At PaperG, we built online advertising technology that’s now used by over 20,000 local businesses and 100 media companies. And the magical part of being an entrepreneur is that even though you’ll work long hours, you won’t even realize how much you’re working – because it’s so enjoyable that it doesn’t even feel like work. One unique aspect of entrepreneurship is that it doesn’t discriminate – a 20-something year old with no prior work experience can still build a successful company. In no other industry or career can you attain that level of impact, responsibility, and success so quickly. How is this possible? Widespread use of the Internet didn’t occur until the mid-90s, so college students who grew up with the Internet have as much experience online as anyone else. In fact, they often have an advantage because they intuitively understand the Web in a way that older people do not. Some of PaperG’s enterprise customers are willing to pay us tens of thousands of dollars per month because we’ve been able to make online advertising intuitive for local business owners that weren’t comfortable with it before. Many students aspire to ultimately start a startup company, but believe that it would be wiser to gain working experience, become financially secure, and maybe attend business school first. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Although it may seem counter-intuitive, the best stage of your life to start a company is now – when you are able to take financial risks because you don’t yet have a family to support, and when you still have the stamina to pour all your waking hours into making your startup a success. While working at another startup or a larger technology company may indeed be good experience for starting your own company, the returns are probably much smaller if you’re working somewhere else (such as at a bank or

consulting firm). You don’t even need to have a great idea to a start a company. Contrary to popular belief, the idea is usually worth very little – at most startups, the initial idea typically changes several times before the company stumbles upon an idea for a product that people will actually want. PaperG initially wanted to be a marketplace for college newspaper ads before we realized that automating online advertising for local businesses was a lot more lucrative. And as anyone familiar with the history of Facebook knows, execution is more valuable than the idea anyway. For a startup to succeed, it’s primarily important that the founders are smart and have the resilience to keep trying until they make it. Chances are you have those qualities. One reason why careers like investment banking and consulting are so appealing, and starting a company so daunting, is that the path to success is much clearer. The process laid out by on-campus recruiters seems irresistible: get good grades, pass a well-documented interview process, and after two years at Bank X or Firm Y, you’ll be able to do anything you want (never mind that “anything” tends to disproportionally involve hedge funds or private equity). In contrast, it’s less obvious how one even starts a company, much less make it successful. Luckily, there are an increasing number of incubator/startup accelerator programs and web resources that illuminate the startup process, and its associated concepts and terminology, for first-time entrepreneurs. Additionally, being a Harvard student means you have unique access to an alumni network of entrepreneurs that are more than willing to help out (you can email me at – in fact, much of the $1.1 million seed round we raised came from the founders’ alumni networks. Most crucially, the learning process itself – of product discovery, hiring and managing a great team, raising money from investors, acquiring real customers, identifying and pursuing a business model, talking with the press, etc. – is one of the most rewarding aspects of starting a company. I learned more in the first 3 months of starting PaperG than I probably would have in 2 years at a typical entry-level job. So what are you waiting for? Start your own company, and embark on the greatest adventure of your life.




Go West The San Francisco Design Center, when empty, looks like a four story, hundred-thousand square foot airplane hangar with carpet. Over four days in May of 2007, we transformed this into a cacophony of spot lighting, backlit dividers, and dozens of luminescent screens, pulsating with dance music and the bustle of a thousand jostling people from the city, the area, the world. In all respects, this looked like a rave, and on any other day in San Francisco, it could have been. But as I stood ready to speak about what the young Facebook was about to unleash on the developer, venture capital, and media throng standing, sitting, and hanging off the walls in front of me, my heart raced anyway. That’s why when the lights went down and the microphone kicked in, I just started sprinting. Back and forth across the room, like a mad country preacher I testified about how the project I founded at twenty-five alone on a late night a year before, the Facebook Platform, was going to change their lives forever. Broken repeatedly by spontaneous, thundering applause, I shouted my twenty-minute thesis defense, but I received no doctorate. I was simply a software engineer, and my thesis was that engineers, using these tools, could work for themselves and build their own dream. Over the next two years, a five hundred million dollar economy of social applications created by thousands of companies sprang up. I think I passed. I was no tenured professor or vice president or “made” partner. I hadn’t spent my early twenties paying my dues by teaching the undergrads a professor didn’t have time for, or making PowerPoint decks for the managing director, or climbing my way through a nine-level hierarchy in some giant company to become an “architect” so someone would listen. These builders of Silicon Valley didn’t care. They didn’t care I went to Harvard, or even that I graduated high school. They cared about the idea, the fact that we made it real, and that it would change the way software was written on the Internet. This is what Silicon Valley is about. But beware - Silicon Valley turns Harvard on its head. You’re at Harvard for two reasons. One you have drive. You are good at pleasing your elders down a straight and narrow path. You ace standardized tests, you write flawless five paragraph essays, and you can do exactly what your teachers

specify to earn that coveted A, riding straight to the right of the number line, to Eastern terminus of that railroad - success! You can take that train in first class for the rest of your life. You know where it’s going to end - managing director, tenured lecturer, six-figure boss man, Chief Financial Officer. I’m sure your superiors will appreciate your dedication. But let us not forget the admissions committee looked at your essay too. And I’ll bet you didn’t write about your achievements, or about how well you did your schoolwork. You wrote about your passion, that human talent or service or desire that made you special. Not what you feel the pull to BE, but what you feel the pull to DO. And your life epic will be the story of what you do. If you are in software, Silicon Valley is the place where you can write that epic unconstrained, because you are the person the startups and small companies are looking for. The defenders of value are important - the managers, the lawyers, the financial people. But it is the creators of value who wield the power - the engineers, the designers, the product thinkers. It is your ideas from late-night bull sessions and later-night prototyping that become features and products and industries, not the sludge emerging from endless top-down specifications and board meetings. And the role doesn’t define you here - I’ve been an engineer, a manager, a mentor, a recruiter, a speaker and writer, an evangelist, a leader. I now run Facebook Mobile using all of these tools, digging deep into that drive and that passion, not to be the best I can be, but to DO the best I can DO. It was up to me to make my ideas a success, and I’ve learned more quickly here at Facebook than I did anywhere else. Silicon Valley is intense. This probably is the densest concentration of driven and intelligent people anywhere, including New York, DC, and Cambridges on both sides of the pond. You can’t coast on Harvard here. There are Berkeley students and Stanford students and complete dropouts who emerge already practiced in building products and founding companies. But you have the skill, the drive, and the passion to truly test yourself and write your epic here. If you want to get somewhere amazing with your time on this planet, don’t just ride that easy train to the right. Go west, young (wo)man. I’ll see you here.


Dave Fetterman ’03 Engineering Manager Facebook


TECHNOLOGY Want to Outsmart the Markets? Consider a Career with IMC Financial Markets IMC financial markets is one of the world’s leading proprietary trading firms in various products listed on exchanges throughout the globe. Founded in the Netherlands in 1989, we are headquartered in Amsterdam with a flagship office in Chicago. Additionally, we have offices in Hong Kong, Sydney, and Zug. Driven by technology, our algorithmic trading and software development teams work closely together to contribute to our success as a top market maker in the world. Imagine an environment that has the laid back nature of a startup, but the intensity and competitiveness of a high frequency trading firm. We pride ourselves on creating a culture that blends teamwork and innovation with the intellectual stimulation of a university. At IMC you won’t be just a number, you will be adding value on your first day while working and learning from some of the most talented software developers and traders in the industry. New graduates can count on IMC for enormous responsibility early on in their careers, great benefits, and a team that supports their development and success. Begin your career with a four week traineeship in our Amsterdam office where you will train and learn from people across the globe.

Apply online through Crimson Careers today! Application Deadline: October 5th

On-Campus Interviews: October 18th

IMC is now accepting resumes for TRADER and SOFTWARE DEVELOPER

In the arena of human life the honors and rewards fall to those who show their good qualities in action. –Aristotle

Oliver Wyman is a leading global management consulting firm At Oliver Wyman, you will have the opportunity to do strategic consulting work in one of our two exceptional tracks. Financial Services Management Consulting Application Deadlines: Full-time Consultant:

September 28th, 2011 Summer Consultant:

January 18th, 2012

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Mon d, 2011 r ber 3 s Hotel o Oct le r a h The C :30pm 6

General Management Consulting Application Deadlines: Full-time Consultant:

September 28th, 2011 Summer Consultant:

January 31st, 2012

Oliver Wyman is an international management consulting firm serving Global 1000 clients. An equal opportunity employer M/F/D/V. Visit us at

Opportunity is calling. The opportunity to be a part of a growing and diverse financial platform. The opportunity to challenge yourself in an entrepreneurial and fast-paced environment. The opportunity to reach your full potential.

Harvard University Citadel Career Events

Harvard Career Forum Friday, September 9 1:30pm – 4:00pm Sheraton Commander Hotel

Citadel Information Session Tuesday, September 20 8:00pm – 9:00pm Charles Hotel – Rogers & Stratton Room

Full-Time On-Campus Interviews Friday, September 30 Please visit OCS for details

Citadel is a leading global financial institution built on a foundation of world-class talent, technology and infrastructure. From proven asset management strategies to investment banking and a strong capital markets platform, Citadel converts opportunity into results. For more information, please visit

Opportunities are available across Citadel Asset Management

Guide to Job Search 2011  
Guide to Job Search 2011  

The Office of Career Services and The Harvard Crimson's Guide to Job Search 2011