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500+ future business leaders ready for the job market

Recruiters from 40+ companies meet students at biggest IESE Career Forum

The scene at the 2019 IESE Career Forum in Barcelona. photo: billy gray.

October 18, 2019

The lobby outside IESE’s Aula Magna became a sea of young business students dressed to the nines, clutching CVs and thinking about the future during this week’s Career Forum.

Students moved from Amazon‘s booth to McKinsey‘s and then to Facebook‘s. Recruiters from Morgan Stanley, Johnson & Johnson and Adidas asked about geographic backgrounds and academic specialities.

And, for the first time, participants in two IESE programs, the MBA and the Master in Management, got to know each other–and to swap job hunt tips.

A Place to Network, and to Learn 

It was Clara Casanueva‘s (MiM-20) first visit to the Barcelona campus. She came to the forum from IESE Madrid, where she and 46 classmates form IESE’s inaugural MiM class. She noted that forum attendees from the MiM program, which prepares recent college graduates to launch their careers, learned a lot from their MBA counterparts with more professional experience.

“It’s been an exciting and valuable experience talking to recruiters,” said Casanueva, who’s particularly interested in the luxury consumer goods industry. “But I’ve also loved having the opportunity to talk to the MBA students here. They’ve been able to share their own experiences with these types of events and with various professional sectors.”

Casanueva, 21, had never been to a forum of this kind before. What sort of advice did the more seasoned MBA participants give her? “The most important thing they’ve told me is to research the companies as much as you can, and prepare as many questions for recruiters as possible,” she said. “This helps you show your interest in the companies and the work they do.”

A Full Slate

Over 500 students participated in the fair, which ran from Monday through Wednesday and welcomed 40 companies from a wide range of sectors. There were company presentations, networking lunches and cocktail parties, and prearranged one-on-one interviews.

But it was the afternoon career fairs that caused the biggest hubbub, as hundreds of attending participants huddled with recruiters to plot their professional development and learn more about companies as diverse as Nike, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Rakuten, the Japanese e-commerce firm that’s also the global innovation and entertainment partner of hometown soccer heroes, FC Barcelona.

Each year, the career forum accounts for a large share of job offers made to departing MBAs. The recruiting companies present ranged from leading consulting firms to large investment banks to cutting-edge tech companies and top-brand retailers.

More Career Events to Come 

On-campus recruiting extends well beyond the Career Forum. During the 2018-2019 academic year, IESE hosted more than 190 companies for presentations, interviews and networking events.

The next edition of the Career Forum takes place February 11-12, 2020 in Barcelona.