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This thread is dedicated to graduates of non-target universities who made it into the coveted investment banking departments of our favorite bulge brackets.

If you fit this description, please respond to this thread so we can pay homage.

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Comments (35)

  • Hawke1's picture

    Non target and non finance major. Broke in this year with a little bit of luck.

  • lucasblane's picture

    What bank?

    I am just curious to see if there are any on WSO.

    I don't think they get enough credit for what they have accomplished in the IB industry.

  • In reply to Hawke1
    Joshua.D's picture

    Hawke1:
    Non target and non finance major. Broke in this year with a little bit of luck.

    Details?

  • mais90's picture

    dude it's not a big deal man, breaking in from a non-target school. my school is semi target LAC in US. each year, 4 of 9 who want to work on Wall Street end up getting an offer from BB firms. Even this year, three of the people got summer analyst internships at CS, BofA ML and USB. And to make u feel even better, their GPA were in the range 3.6-3.7. Networking is what counts if ur from a non-target school. having said that, my school has a number of alums on wall street so...

  • gomes3pc's picture

    Not rocket science to get in so long as you don't to somewhere like SE Louisiana State.

    (1) Have a high GPA (3.7+); for most schools, it's not THAT hard to major in econ or something and get this
    (2) Get some internships your freshman/sophomore year that have an accounting / finance background, even if unpaid
    (3) Talk with professors about students who managed to get into banking - if your school is remotely respectable, there was probably 1-5 kids out there who got into i-banking
    (4) Spend a few weeks searching on Google, your alumni database, wherever you can to find people with connections to you in banking. I am sure some friend or alumnus will pop up. When they do, call them, ask pertinent questions about getting to know the industry and I am sure they'll do what they can to help you if you sound eager, smart and respectful
    (5) Study the Vault guides and sites like M&I like crazy. Know it front to back - 90% of interview questions come from here. Practice your questions and avoid canned responses as much as possible

    That's about it. I went to a small LAC who would send a few kids to i-banking a year out of a class of about 1,000 students. Worked at a corp dev / M&A division of a F500 company near home as a junior, got banking contacts with a few guys who had done it before switching to "the good life" in corporate, and was off and running. At the same time as this, I also cold called dozens of alumni to get advice and contacts, leading to 2-3 more interviews just through hustling basically.

    Once you get the interview, it's up to you. But the interview spots are out there. i-banking classes are usually 120-150+ kids; sure half to 3/4 are from target schools but that still means at 6-8 major banks there's about 30-40 spots they leave up in the air for non-core and non-target students. It doesn't take a PhD to do the job so it's really about proving you're not an idiot to the right contacts and working your butt off to get in touch with them.

  • bwils29's picture

    Guess that makes me a rocket scientist. SW Louisiana State grad to a BB.

    Did all 5 of the above mentioned items and cold called banks after googling people's numbers. Just asked them to at least give me a phone interview. That led to a live interview, which lead to a superday.

    Not impossible to get in, but once you are in, you realize how lucky you got because the whole process can be a crap shoot.

  • BigBucks's picture

    Non-target ENGR friend just got FT offer. New York, New York.

  • NF0913's picture

    three guys from a non-target this yer had summer internships at top bulges, one in S&T and 2 in M&A. i know one got return offer but the others i haven't spoken with: i'm almost positive they have received offers.

    all had high gpa (above 3.8) and relevant internships.

  • In reply to Joshua.D
    Hawke1's picture

    Joshua.D:
    Hawke1:
    Non target and non finance major. Broke in this year with a little bit of luck.

    Details?

    I worked my ass off in terms of networking and that's what really got me in. I also had a fair amount of experience with finance internships. The contact that got me my informational interview stressed to me that once the interview process started his input would mean nothing, and it was all on me. Just come off as being enthusiastic and intelligent and you'll be fine. In terms of details...I'm at a BB in NYC and I'm in IBD.

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  • ChuckFinley's picture

    Florida had summers at Goldman, Jpm, evercore, baml, and citi as well as 5 or 6 at wells Fargo. All had good gpa's and a decent internship the previous summer.

  • In reply to insight123
    ChuckFinley's picture

    insight123:
    ChuckFinley:
    Florida had summers at Goldman, Jpm, evercore, baml, and citi as well as 5 or 6 at wells Fargo. All had good gpa's and a decent internship the previous summer.

    They were all MSF kids.

    Sure, but they all are florida undergrads doing a combined degree. Not a target except maybe at wells fargo.

  • rockpaperscissors's picture

    I'm from a non-target trying to get into a BB, and I feel like I'm doing things very similar to what you've said. I have a 3.7+ GPA, interning at a regional IB, have been talking to alumni that work in the industry, etc. I've actually set up meetings with them and will be meeting a few of them soon.

    My problem is, there's not ENOUGH alumni from my school. They're mostly in one bank, so I feel like I'm not casting a wide enough of a net. I've been thinking about cold-calling, but who should I call? Random analysts or the HR department?

  • gomes3pc's picture

    Both. There's literally no downside to doing this. I ended up with an offer at a major MM bank after cold calling one of the analysts after being redirected to him when I called the front desk asking about recruiting. Got a bit lucky that the kid even listened but we had a similar background (both went to LACs in New England) so we hit it off and eventually got an offer.

    If you just get directed to fill out an online application, then you're back to where you started with nothing lost. I would imagine that trying to do the cold calling route works better with regional offices and smaller banks though, as NYC BB recruiting is a different animal altogether.

  • rockpaperscissors's picture

    What would you suggest for NYC BB?

  • Situation's picture

    I have 3 offers right now from a super non target. 3.8+, lots of leadership bs, IB boutique internship in NY my junior year. Advice would be read every guide out there, do wall street prep, and cold call/linkedin like crazy. I ended up messaging over 1000 people in the last year, had phone convos with over 100. Culminated into around 7 final rounds at reputable firms. If you really want it, be extremely persistent. 2 out of 10 will give you the time of day so be a shark and know it is a numbers game.

    Another great part of the networking is you will have tons of contacts who will be in the right places later on in your IB/PE career.

  • ByAWideMargin's picture

    I broke in with a 3.3 GPA and went to Northeastern University. I was fortunate enough to land a coop at a middle market Private equity firm and worked for three years. I just transitioned into leveraged finance at a reputable middle market.

  • New Yorker's picture

    1. all 'non-targets" are not equal
    2. it's not a fucking success story. something like 36% of each bb is "non-target"

  • In reply to ByAWideMargin
    finalfantasy's picture

    ByAWideMargin:
    I broke in with a 3.3 GPA and went to Northeastern University. I was fortunate enough to land a coop at a middle market Private equity firm and worked for three years. I just transitioned into leveraged finance at a reputable middle market.

    Are you illiterate? This thread is about bulge brackets. This is why you have a 3.3 from northeastern.

  • onemanwolfpack's picture

    finalfantasy, until you get a job in the industry, how bout you quit acting all high and mighty. No one cares where you went to college..

  • finalfantasy's picture

    you mean harvard? all middle markets care. i am most prestigious person at piper jaffray superday

  • onemanwolfpack's picture

    FF, that's funny, because your profile says you attend Yale

    If you're gonna lie and troll, and give unqualified advice, keep your story straight.

  • In reply to finalfantasy
    Nefarious-'s picture

    finalfantasy:
    you mean harvard? all middle markets care. i am most prestigious person at piper jaffray superday

    I can tell from your grammar and spelling.

    You're born, you take shit. You get out in the world, you take more shit. You climb a little higher, you take less shit. Till one day you're up in the rarefied atmosphere and you've forgotten what shit even looks like. Welcome to the layer cake, son.

  • finalfantasy's picture

    eyelikecheese is in operations. these are facts.

    and I'm not lying I attend one of Harvard/Yale/Princeton but don't want to out myself. this aint xoxo

    - peter griffin

  • GutShot's picture

    Broke into S&T and IBD via networking and strong academic performance, complete nontarget. Took a surprising amount of effort. I agree with the previous statement that not all nontargets are created equal.

  • nutsaboutWS's picture

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  • BananaBoy's picture