Tuckies Do Boston: The Boston Consulting Trek

Guest Student Contributor, October 07, 2014 | 0 comments
Tags: Career Trek, consulting, first year, recruiting, career, career development office

By Nicole Daniele T’16

Nicole Daniele T’16 grew up in Edison, New Jersey and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with degrees in international relations and Italian. Prior to Tuck, she worked at the Private Bank at J.P. Morgan for five years, in Philadelphia as a relationship manager, and in New York as a business manager on the Private Bank’s global investment leadership team. She is thrilled to finally be living somewhere more than 50 miles from home and playing tripod ice hockey after years spent running around a field hockey pitch.

Whether you are a committed career changer and passionate about starting a career in consulting (like me), or a first-year evaluating different industries for summer internships, the Boston consulting trek is an incredible chance to visit some of the world’s most prestigious consulting firms—and, as far as I know, another unique feature of Tuck. (Most of my friends, be they at business school or back in the “real world,” told me I was crazy to be thinking about jobs only one month into my MBA!) Jointly organized by the Career Development Office and the Consulting Club, the trek provides first-year students the opportunity to tour a variety of firms in a more informal setting and liaise with Tuck alumni.

Since my last experience—“trekking with Tuckies”—involved a four-day hike to Machu Picchu, I expected that our three-day excursion would be somewhat less strenuous. As usual, Tuck proved me wrong for all of the right reasons! Our 6 a.m. departure was quite rough post an evening of celebrating the end of Fall A exams, but thanks to some reggaeton and 90s hits on Spotify, we arrived at Parthenon’s waterfront offices suited up and ready.

Jay Bartlett T’96 served as our keynote speaker for the trek, proudly donning his old Tuck tripod hockey jersey and sharing stories about his glory days on the ice and his career. Bartlett is a founder of Parthenon’s private equity group and previously did a stint with the US Olympic Committee in Salt Lake City.

While eager to discuss Parthenon, he imparted some key advice as we kicked off the tour. He asked all 88 of us to think about three questions during each office visit:

  1. Are people there—either in the office or on the road—and what are they doing? 
  2. Who are the clients? 
  3. What type of work does each firm do?

While these questions seem relatively simple, they proved invaluable in helping us differentiate between firms, and evaluate where we believe we would find the most success in the long run.
Depending on individual preference, we had the opportunity to visit up to 11 firms including:

The three days were a whirlwind of presentations, cocktails, open Q&A, and smaller breakout sessions—one of which was likened to speed dating, an interesting recruiting analogy! It proved, however, to be an invaluable opportunity to connect with Tuckies, all of whom were enthusiastic about helping us navigate recruiting, sharing career advice, and were proud of what distinguishes their firm—whether that includes industry expertise, office and case model, or personality. 

Many firms emphasized similarities in Tuck’s unique culture and theirs, and reiterated how much our Tuck experience will prepare us for a successful career in consulting. We have returned to Hanover energized to continue recruiting, begin case prep with second years, and with a much clearer picture of a day in the life and career progression of a successful Tuckie consultant. 

And … lest you think our trekking days are over, us T’16s are in the midst of scheduling smaller consulting treks to far-flung locales like Chicago, Houston, Washington DC, NYC, and London to meet with more Tuckies. My hiking boots may be packed away for the winter, but the adventures with new friends and classmates continue.

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