A non-target's failure
I'm at a non-target and the advice for non-targets on these forums is honestly absolute bullshit. Everyone says 'keep trying', 'keep your head up', 'good luck just keep at it!'...
It's such bullshit. Just because 1 guy from a non-target out of the 10000+ trying gets in, doesn't mean there is hope for all of us. I wish someone had just told me at the start of college that I was not going to make it because it's just too competitive, and I wouldn't have wasted so much fucking time trying for something that was never going to happen.
I messed up in high school and ended up at a non-target and I was angry at myself, but I decided to work incredibly hard to try and get something. I've lost count of the number of stupid, useless applications I have sent off. My college has a non-existent network with no alumni in the industry, so I have had to network all by myself. I have literally sent over 3000 emails since starting college and have worked tirelessly just to get someone to take a 5 minute call with me. I have contacted countless recruiters and many straight up told me they don't hire from my college. Despite the odds stacked against me, I was told 'keep at it', 'you are working really hard, you will get there in the end'. So I kept grinding. I, asset pricing, , , I looked into each specific division and it's , S&T, how banks raise , , , etc. I read every relevant resource available to me to ensure that I knew everything I possibly could about the roles I was applying for. Also, I should note that I study a quantitative/relevant subject, not that it matters anyway since I am at a non-target.
I got rejected every single time. I would always ask for feedback and re-assess to improve - it's not like I was just sending out the same applications again and again. One of my friends from high school studies at a target and got an internship so I asked him for help with my applications. I sent him one of my applications and he said he was surprised that I didn't get any internship offers. When I saw his application which was successful, I was fucking shocked. It was so basic and had nothing relevant to the role. This guy was an english major, he had no idea how to construct models and he thought investment bankers are day-traders LOL! I know that he got the internship and I didn't so I can't really talk, but I was genuinely shocked at how basic his application was. At first I didn't even believe that was his actual application and I thought he was just trolling me, but he told me that the firm had a campus day at his college and he spoke to the guy there and put his name down on some form, which he claims helped fast-track his application. My college has never had a campus day from firms in the industry.
After that I just felt so defeated. It's like nothing I try will work simply because I fucked up in high school and ended up at a non-target. It's like I am being punished for going to a non-target. I thought if I worked hard enough then it would still be possible to break in, and the posts on this forum from other non-targets who had made it gave me hope. But I'm fucking exhausted. 3 years of constant rejection eventually wears you down. I knew that I would have to work 10x as hard as a target student because I'm at a non-target. I accepted that because it is my fault that I am at a non-target. But I thought I would at least get one fucking offer after so much work.
I'm going into my final year and I don't know what to do anymore. All my hard work so far has been a waste because I can't get an offer. There was nothing more I wanted over the past 3 years than to get into my dream career. I just can't do something else because I will be forever resentful of the fact that I am not good enough. I have been breaking down crying randomly because I am coming to terms with the fact that it's not going to work out for me. I can't see a good future and I have considered killing myself.
I don't know why I made this post tbh. It was initially meant to be a rant to vent my frustrations, but I don't really talk to anyone about this since no one else in my college applies for these things.
I guess all I have to say for other non-targets out there is that despite the rare success stories you see, the reality is you are statistically not going to make it. You don't read about all the people like me who have worked really hard but don't get any offers. Just be prepared for the possibility of failure so you don't react adversely to it.