Internships Lead to Job Offers for DePaul Business Students

When Dimitri Eliopoulos began attending DePaul University more than a decade ago to study finance, he knew he wanted to work with money and people.

At the start of his senior year at the Driehaus College of Business, Eliopoulos (BUS ’01) began applying for internships in the wealth management industry through the DePaul Career Center. He soon scored a summer internship in Chicago working with a small team at a large financial services firm.

Now, more than a decade later, Eliopoulos is working with the same team of people who founded RMB Capital, an independent firm that specializes in wealth and investment planning for organizations and individuals. Previously a senior wealth manager, Eliopoulos was promoted to managing director of Central Midwest at RMB Capital, overseeing the firm’s wealth management business in the Central Midwest region.

Born and raised in Chicago, Eliopoulos credits his success to getting his foot in the door through an internship.

“My internship was very hands-on,” he says. “The individuals who led the team that I joined years ago are mentors to me and they’re my partners today. I was able to do everything from job shadowing to helping prepare investment and financial planning recommendations for clients or prospective clients and just having the ability to make mistakes and learn from those mistakes.”

Fostering career success


According to a report released by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, 63 percent of college graduates who completed a paid internship received a job offer, compared to 35 percent who never interned. 

“Internships are a crucial component for business students, especially for those who are looking to start their career or make a transition,” says Enrique Guerrero, assistant director at the Kellstadt Career Management Center. “At face value, internships provide beneficial ‘real world’ work experience. With that experience comes the chance to get a feel for an industry that may be new for you. It isn’t uncommon for students to complete an internship knowing that it wasn’t something they see themselves doing long-term, and that is okay.”

To prepare students for post-graduation employment, the Kellstadt Career Management Center helps graduate students by hosting career strategy sessions, recruiting and networking events and connecting students to Kellstadt’s extensive employer and alumni network. The university's DePaul Career Center helps undergraduate students by providing similar career coaching services.

For 2017 MBA candidate Courtney Hubbard, taking advantage of Kellstadt’s resources played a large role in securing an internship at Ernst & Young, one of the big four global accounting firms. Following a summer-long internship in transfer pricing, Hubbard recently secured a full-time position with the company.

“Utilizing the Kellstadt Career Management Center and using the DePaul network was crucial for me,” says Hubbard, who chose to study international business for her MBA concentration. “I would not have gotten this job if the Career Management Center had not had my back, but they had my back because I came in and asked for help.”

Hubbard enrolled in Kellstadt’s full-time MBA program after working in public affairs in Washington, D.C. for more than six years. The Career Management Center connected Hubbard to an alumnus working in transfer pricing at a large accounting firm through DePaul’s Alumni Sharing Knowledge  network The connections eventually confirmed Hubbard’s interest in transfer pricing and led to an internship with E&Y.

“The good thing about transfer pricing is that people come from a lot of different backgrounds,” she says. “It was a great place for me to use my experience in an area that was open to someone with a unique set of skills.”


Persistence, communication and networking



Being intentional about expanding your network and utilizing professional development events and workshops – these are keys to securing an internship and full-time employment.

Eliopoulos, who is the first in his family to graduate from college, says finding an internship not only leads to employment but also helps students understand what they want in a career by getting internships in a variety of areas within an industry.

“One of the skills that I think is critical and necessary, in addition to learning a trade and getting a degree in a specific field, is to learn how to be a great communicator,” he says. “You could be the smartest person and have the greatest idea, but if you can’t communicate or articulate it, you’re not going to be as successful.”

Hubbard advises students to spend time using DePaul Handshake, researching connections on LinkedIn and to continue being persistent.

“It’s a commitment within itself to get an internship – you have to be hungry, do what it takes and do the work yourself,” she says. “No one is going to come to you offering you an internship – you have to go look for them.”

Learn more about the university's DePaul Career Center for undergraduate students and the Kellstadt Career Management Center for graduate business students.