Interns said to be collapsing due to long hours

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According to (admittedly unsubstantiated) rumours on Wall Street blog Dealbreaker, interns at JPMorgan are suffering some ill affects of the long hours.

One was rushed to hospital following "exhaustion and a migraine headache", while another collapsed in a seizure after three consecutive all nighters in a bid to complete their "homework project".

Of course, JPMorgan is by no means unique in making its interns work long hours, and these stress related ailments are not unheard of closer to home. Our investment banking intern diarist last year crashed out after just 4 weeks, following an illness where: "Pain radiated through my body and I was hardly able to crawl out of bed."

The hours she was expected to work, it seems, were rather crippling:

The staffer gave me four 'long-term' projects that he wanted me to do that would "keep me busy till the early hours" and stated he wanted progress by mid next week. My heart sank: little did he know my very presence at work screamed out commitment and motivation, little did he know that every step I took was marked by pain, and that I was getting sicker by the day.

The fact is, though, if you can't handle the hours within an internship, you're unlikely to cut it in a full-time position.

Polly Courtney, a novelist who wrote of her "life of misery" working for an investment bank in 2006, looks back on her internship as relatively halcyon days. She wrote:

Twice a week, the company laid on events - wine-tasting, pub crawls, cocktail evenings at the Tower of London - that made us think we were working for the best firm in town. I wasn't keeping horrendously long hours - 13 or 14 hours a day was the norm - but others around me were always still sitting at their desks when I left every night. That should have been a warning sign.

Perhaps it's the partying on top of the long hours that contributes to any burnout. A man was recently discovered slumped across bull sculpture near Wall Street in nothing but a pair of Y-fronts.

It was, in fact, an actor drumming up publicity for forthcoming film, Robber Barons of Wall Street. But initial assumptions were that it was an intern who had collapsed after an all night bender.

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