Lehman Collapse Sends Students Job Hunting

With offers revoked, business school students face an uncertain job market.

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Not only has the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy stung longtimers in the financial world, it is also disrupting the plans of business school students from some of the most prestigious programs in the country. Students from Yale, Michigan, and Emory, among others, are watching their industry collapse, as well as seeing their job offers disappear.

For interns last summer, the mood at Lehman was gloomy, but supervisors rarely betrayed fears of bankruptcy in the future. "We all knew that the situation was pretty bad working throughout the summer," a Michigan senior told the Daily. "But there was always kind of a confidence that we would work it out and things would end up being OK." Now, she is looking for another job after her full-time offer evaporated with Lehman's Chapter 11 filing.

A Yale senior had a similar experience, with Lehman officials telling interns they had no reason to worry. "Things definitely weren't good this summer, but I didn't expect them to get this bad," he told the Daily News. "We were led to believe that by and large, the fundamentals of business were good and things would recover."

Business school career counselors have been scrambling to reach out to affected students and have even heard from some alumni seeking help. With fewer positions available and more veteran bankers looking for jobs, "every student who's interested in banking will take a real serious look at the career they want and the life they want and the risks they take with that choice," said Michigan's business school career development director. Emory's career counselor echoed the sentiment: "This is the time for students...to start considering Plan Bs."