Applying for the Academy Internship: How to Put Your Best Foot Forward
Jaimi Goodfriend, Head of Investment Professional Development at Point72, shares what makes a resume, questionnaire and case study stand out in our process.
Thousands of people apply for the Point72 Academy Summer Internship each year. With that many resumes to sift through, what makes a candidate stand out?
We’ll consider people from any background, but what we want to see is impact. Make sure you quantify what you’ve done on your resume; don’t say you helped on a project, tell us how your work affected people or changed an outcome, and how it impacted the overall business’ goals.
We’re also looking to see what makes you unique. If you speak another language, let us know your skill level. Show us what you’re passionate about, even if it’s not related to finance. A well-rounded candidate is always more compelling. That being said, keep your resume concise and clean. Everything on your resume should convey something important and be easy to understand.
On that note, make sure your resume matches the job you’re applying for. If you have a personal statement, it should be in line with the job responsibilities and skills listed in the job description. Also, please include your month of graduation, as many of our opportunities are only applicable to certain grad years, and we want to make sure you are considered for the right roles.
As the first step in our application process, qualified candidates are sent an online questionnaire. How should applicants think about answering these questions?
Once again, it’s great to be concise in your communication. We’ve added a word limit to help you make sure you’re getting your point across clearly and quickly.
Think about what everyone else will write, and DON’T write that! We want you to be honest and show us who you are. Try to respond with your first instinct; answer in a way that is authentic to you.
For those who are successful in the questionnaire screen, the next stage is a case study, where candidates get to show us their ability to do research and think critically. What should candidates focus on in this step?
Make sure to present your thesis upfront. We shouldn’t be searching for takeaways or conclusions. We want to see that you’re a critical thinker with strong analytical skills, so show us that you can form your own opinion, and back it up with qualitative and quantitative material.
A lot of people are disqualified at this stage based on their model, so make sure it’s original and made from scratch! We don’t want to see templates. Also, it seems simple, but keep your work focused on answering the questions posed in the prompt. A strong analysis won’t get you through to the next step if it doesn’t address the prompt correctly.
The interview process can be intimidating. How should candidates spend their time preparing?
Make sure you understand the role of the person that you’re interviewing with – what is their area of expertise? It’s also important to come prepared with questions that are unique – ask us something that isn’t posted on the website. We have a lot of material out there to answer basic programming questions, so make sure you’ve done your due diligence.
It’s also important that you’re able to answer the question “Why long/short investing?” Take your time to research the Firm and the role. Talk to alumni of your school who have gone through the Academy or utilize LinkedIn to build connections. Be thoughtful about your outreach – you want to focus on finding the right people who may be able to offer insight
Starting your career is a big step – so think about what you need to know. An interview is important for us as an evaluative tool, but it’s just as important for you in deciding if this is where you want to be. What are you most interested in pursuing? What kind of environment will make you happy long term? How will the firm continue to develop and challenge you? Make sure that we can offer that for you.
Any last thoughts for candidates?
There are a lot of resources out there to help you learn about the Firm. Soak in all that you can. We’re excited to get to know you through your application. And remember, you don’t have to have a finance background. We’re looking for curious people who want to learn more about the markets and accelerate their own growth.