Center for Career Exploration

Finance and Consulting

If you are interested in applying your skills toward solving business problems or analyzing complex financial transactions you may be interested in exploring career pathways in finance and consulting. About 1 in 4 Brown students secure opportunities in these fields, making this pathway one of the most common post-graduate destinations for undergrads.

The Finance and Consulting Pathway involves many large, well-known employers who partner with the Brown Center for Career Exploration to post internships and jobs on Handshake, attend career fairs and meet with students on campus (or virtually) for information sessions, coffee chats and, sometimes, on-campus interviews. These employer partners also hire cohorts of Brown students into financial analyst or consulting positions each year.

Quite a few graduating seniors get jobs with companies that don’t necessarily recruit on campus and are perhaps less well-known, often on a later timeline — in the spring, before or a few months after graduation.

Exploration and experience

If you are interested in finance and consulting, consider taking courses such as Management of Industrial and Nonprofit Organizations (ENGN 0090), Financial Accounting (ECON 0710), Investments 1 (ECON 1710) and Corporate Finance (ECON 1720), among others. You should also consider joining investment, business and consulting clubs on campus. 

During your first and second years, you can search for early talents programs at financial services and consulting employers. These can range from weekend events to summer internships and will help you gain knowledge and experience.

Searching for jobs and internships in finance and consulting

Although recruiting for finance and consulting positions can vary by organization, remember that the majority of employers who hire for for these roles have a few things in common:

  • They start the recruiting process early and visit campus often via career fairs and on campus recruiting events. Employers in these industries are aggressive in their recruiting timelines. Many begin recruiting in your sophomore year (summer and fall semester for spring internships and spring for your junior year summer). It is important to have your application materials (resume, cover letters, etc.) ready for this early recruitment process.
  • Preparation is critical. The interviewing process can be quite intensive. Many first-round interviews will be conducted by video through an online software tool rather than with an actual person. Second- and final-round interviews will often be conducted in person for an entire day and may require travel to an employer’s offices. Lastly, consulting case interviews and financial services technical interviews require an extended lead time for practice before the interview. Many students will begin drilling on their interview skills for finance and consulting at least two to three months before their interviews.
  • They can be aggressive with their offer timelines. This can be a competitive industry so employers often pressure students to make a decision quickly. Brown has developed an employer recruiting policy to help students take time to reflect before making a decision. The counseling team at the Brown Center for Career Exploration can work with you if you feel pressured by any organization to make a decision quickly.  
  • Recruiters post positions and events in Handshake. Many finance and consulting recruiters will message students directly. Make sure you update your profile and follow key employers to stay up-to-date on events and opportunities.

Additional resources

Get information and insights about a variety of career fields and industries with free access to Vault Guides.
Connect with more than 65,000 Brown alumni and search for internship opportunities — many reserved exclusively for Brown students.
Get professional help preparing for consulting interviews.
Find tips and strategies for successfully navigating the consulting interview process.
Access finance and consulting interview courses as well as industry and company reports and insights.