Ivey + Western Engineering?

Hey all - high school class of 24' here strongly considering high finance as a prospective career. I'm Canadian, so it's much more feasible for me to apply to Canadian universities - making Western Ivey the clear no. 1 choice.

At Western, part of your AEO stipulation is that you need to study any other major for the first two years of your UG studies pre-HBA. After, you have the option to graduate a year late with both your HBA and your other degree in hand.

I'm wondering if majoring in software engineering for my first two years, then finishing it off in my 5th year, is a good idea. On one hand, I feel like the logical reasoning abilities you gain from majoring in engineering is an asset for any job you do, and it gives me a little bit of flexibility if I ever decide to shift to S&T or even switch careers entirely. On the other hand, because Ivey bell curves the class so tightly around 80% and engineering is an inherently difficult major, my UG GPA might not be strong and I could be screwed for any postgrad options (e.g. Master's, MBA, or even a JD).

On the other hand, majoring in non-Ivey business (BMOS) would be a considerably lighter courseload and would allow me more time to network and do extracurriculars, especially as recruiting cycles start earlier and earlier. I've also read on this forum (although not sure if true) that many BBs and EBs recruit directly out of Western Investment Club and I'm expected to have all my technicals prepared by year 2.

I don't have a particular interest in quant stuff; more interested in FO roles.

Please forgive any stupid questions - still pretty new to this. 

Most Helpful

Engineering as a pre-Ivey major is sort of a binary outcome. People either get really high grades their first two years (and are probably at the top of entrance averages to Ivey) or they do poorly and don't get in. This is compared to a softer major like Political Science or BMOS, where there are certain courses which are much more subjective (usually essay based) and therefore it's harder to get an amazing average (90+) but you're less at risk of bombing a class and getting a sub 70. If you're truly interested in engineering, I think employers across industries value the skillset it builds, so it's always a good option. But I wouldn't pursue it if you're not actually interested, as it will affect your motivation to study / push through those harder courses.

You're correct that you need to have technicals prepped year 1/2 to be competitive for 2nd year internships / WIC in order to have a good chance at junior year recruiting (which takes place 2nd semester of 2nd year). I don't think studying engineering will prevent you from achieving that, but it definitely forces you to be more on top of managing your time.


Just go to Queen's. I know a couple people who got dinged from AEO even though they were smart kids in HS. They couldn't adapt to the college transition and first year can be hard if you're doing a technical course like something in engineering.


Easily take Westerns Offer. Average is easy, even is soft eng. If completed dual degree no reason for higher education especially pursuing high finance. Recruiters go for tech heads, most hires come from CS x Ivey , soft eng is the equivalent. If you actually plan on perusing a real career in finance, your gpa shouldn’t be a worry for you especially for Ivey, as for recruiting BB / EB you need a min ~85. What this means is Ivey will be easily perusable for you for you and if you couldn’t achieve the average, you would of never been able to achieve a good summer offer anyway. Just don’t go out to much and focus on school. You can learn every tech / behavioural during summer after first year in the span of like two months so don’t stress that.


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