IE University’s Talent & Careers team emphasizes the importance of building a professional profile early on—waiting until the last year is not an option for students who want to secure positions at top companies worldwide.
Talent & Careers informs students of all available options from the very first year of their undergraduate studies and encourages them to apply to any that are relevant for their future aspirations.
One of the most attractive opportunities for students interested in the financial sector are the renowned Spring Weeks, which are organized at the headquarters of major institutions. These programs are open to high-achieving students who are two years away from graduating, in order to detect top talent early on. Being selected for Spring Weeks is usually a very strong indicator of a student’s suitability for a career in that field post-graduation. And considering the number of applications each bank receives, it’s a great achievement.
Pablo Ron, a third-year IE University student in the Dual Degree in Business Administration & International Relations, was selected for a Spring Week this year. He spoke to us about his experience in the J.P. Morgan Early Insights Program.
How would you explain what the J.P. Morgan Spring Week is to someone who hasn’t heard of it before?
The Early Insights Program at J.P. Morgan, also known as Spring Week, is a full-time, five-day experience that provides deep insight into the firm. In the case of J.P. Morgan, Spring Week is a firm-wide program rather than division-wide—which provides knowledge into the different areas of the bank, such as investment banking, risk or wealth management. This year, there were three programs running simultaneously depending on the student’s background: finance, non-finance and technology.
The program combines an observational part—where participants get to learn more about the firm, its culture and different divisions—with a more practical one, where students work with others to simulate activities. These are conducted in each division, and also include networking events.
How did you hear about this opportunity and why were you interested in participating?
I heard about the program through the IE University Talent & Careers newsletter, when all the Spring Week programs were launched, as well as through the J.P. Morgan Career Portal. I was interested in this program since I wanted to explore possible careers in finance and investment.
What would you highlight about Spring Week? What did you enjoy the most?
Even though Spring Week was carried out online from London due to COVID-19, the program was really insightful. In the Finance Spring Week, there were around 50 students; the program was organized in a way that allowed everyone to interact and work with each other as well as J.P. Morgan staff. What I enjoyed most were the networking sessions and case studies we participated in, as they provided us with real-life situations and tasks that the division usually does.
What did the selection process consist of?
The selection process was highly competitive, as they receive a large amount of applications each year. It largely consists of your CV, but candidates also have to answer some questions about their motivation for participating in the program and their knowledge of the firm. For this program, there was no proper interview at all. I received a response after they analyzed my CV and my answers to the provided questions.
How do you think your IE University experience and the support of the Talent & Careers Department helped you secure this opportunity?
The support from IE University Talent & Careers in reviewing my CV was very important as it allowed me to have an outstanding resume that could compete with other applicants. Moreover, my academic experience at IE University—a prestigious higher education institution—was important in demonstrating that I had the necessary skills to participate in the program, as well as the ability to work in diverse groups.
What would you say to students thinking about applying next year?
The most important thing is to make sure you research the firm in order to familiarize yourself with the institution and its culture. Applying this knowledge to your application is key to securing an offer for the program. Moreover, it is important to have good academic performance, especially in accounting and finance courses. Additionally, I’d strongly suggest being involved in extracurricular activities or courses that demonstrate interest in the industry. Finally, it is important to apply as soon as possible given that the selection process is usually carried out on a rolling basis.