Should I delay graduation by a semester for a summer internship at a large bank?

So here is the deal: although I am set to graduate next May, I somehow got an IB summer internship at a large bank(not BB, but similar to RBC, Nomura type), and might get return offer from it, so now I am thinking, should I delay graduation by a semester to do that internship?

Of course I don't have any offers right now so that's why I am thinking of delaying, and my background is: semi target, finance major, 3.7 and 2 IB internships (boutiques so no return offer). Off course there is still risk regarding that large bank cause I might not get a return offer, but I have come this far and practiced and practiced and they have a reputation of giving high return rates so I am reasonably confident that I will get a return offer if I don't screw up.

I don't know if I should delay graduation or not still. Please advise, thanks!


If you already have an offer for a SA gig and no FT offer, I would see this as a no- brainer. The landscape is getting tougher and tougher and it seems like FT recruiting is almost wrapped up.

Precisely this.

The thing here is that since I have later stated the truth that I will be graduating next May (at that time I haven't decided if I should delay graduation or not) the guy who recruited me dropped as first choice (I was top candidate tho).

So the thing is I have to convince that I will delay my graduation for this opportunity and he needs to take me back in ahead of other students, how can I best convince him?

I was going to approach it like: oh this opportunity is great I don't want to miss it, I so want to work for ur firm, pls take me!!

Is this a good approach, can't think of anything else, please advise!!


Hiding in school and incurring more costs is a waste of time. You didn't make it in. Focus your efforts on leveraging your solid internship experience elsewhere. You'll be able to pursue an MBA down the road if you still want IB.

Best Response

Archer, you're usually the voice of reason on these things but that is kinda fucked up. There is no guarantee OP will get an MBA and I think it's better to get the ib bug out of the system early than when you're 28-30 and working 80-90 hour weeks as an associate. I mean if OP is paying 60k a year or something than you have a stronger argument but really now.... Is taking a semester off/taking only one class/etc. really going to change his 30-40 year career? Probably not.


I messed up, I read it as the OP was hoping to land an internship and didn't have any offers. I was just imagining another 15k or more in student debt in order to chase something uncertain.

Having an offer for a paid internship and extending by a quarter is probably worth it. The OP should consider working their ass off at some other part-time job in the interim to cover the additional costs.

Here's what I would do, and again I apologize for being careless in my initial response:

Accept the internship. Find a job to start saving in order to offset those costs and at the same time start networking and working toward other positions with a potential start date for when you're extended graduation date is set for. You have almost a year to find other employment and I'm sure you'll be able to do so if the internship doesn't work out.



I'd really like to kill myself, I met with an alumni there yesterday and he basically told me because they were sensing my hesitation on the delay graduation thing, they dropped me as a candidate for now and considered other people from my school. But he said that the vp would be happy to talk on the phone either way next week.

I now feel like I am such a fool for letting this good opportunity slip away and want to convince them to take me back, how can I best convince the VP next week?

Obviously I need to tell him I am going to delay my graduation for this, but besides this anything else?


You put this post up on Friday before the weekend. I'm not sure how long you sat on the decision before posting but it has been a business day and extending your graduation isn't an insignificant decision. The VP is happy to talk with you. I would guess you having a confidently decided decision is what they're looking for, otherwise why waste the time?

Good luck! Let us know how it goes.


I talked to the vp yesterday and told him I will delay my graduation for it and have confirmed it first thing in the morning with my academic advisor and she confirmed that my delaying is fine and could send you guys a letter to certify that. VP said fine I will push you through and we really want u, you are our top one candidate. He said I need to check with our HR and get back to u.

Then he responded in the afternoon saying that HR is not having it, said that "have strict guidelines on application criteria" and such. And said he was impressed by my interview performance in the first round and thus willing to consider me for future opportunities "should any future full time opportunities materialize."

I am so screwed, might as well kill myself.


I can't simply because I can't afford it, my parents won't fund me.

I am starting to panic now and am honestly not sure what my next step could be, I am thinking of reaching out to boutiques for sure but also think it might worth a shot to reach out to big banks on the west coast? They might still recruit for full time? Or Chicago? I will target specific groups and check with them one by one? Even that, it's gonna take a lot of time simply because there's a lot of people.


Ok things just changed for better:

So I just got an email from Goldman said that "You are invited to participate in a digital interview, powered by HireVue. Please complete your interview by October 30, 2016."

And "You can find out which divisions are reviewing your interview by logging into the candidate portal at any time."

The thing is when I clicked the link in the email trying to find out which divisions are reviewing my interview and which group/locations I was selected to interview(I applied for multiple locations), I can't find it anything else related to that in my portal. I don't understand, where to find those info??



1.) I have seen a few posts about hirevue lying around. 2) They must have a contact e-mail where you can e-mail and ask. It's not like they will drop you for asking.

**How is my grammar? Drop me a note with any errors you see!**

Definitely delay a semester and take the one shot you've got. Worst case you're in the same situation in a few months— not a big deal.

I basically did the same thing a few years ago. Delayed, got a ft IB offer, and got IB out of my system while in my early 20s.


I took time off of school to do an internship in the past, and it was the best decision I have ever made. What's the rush to graduate? None. Also, it sounds like this is a fantastic opportunity for you, so I think it would be dumb for you not to take it.


Take the internship. Work your ass off for a return offer. Enjoy life during your extra semester, taking effortless classes and drinking every day.

Then out spake brave Horatius, The Captain of the Gate: "To every man upon this earth, death cometh soon or late. And how can man die better than facing fearful odds, For the ashes of his fathers, and the temples of his Gods."

I'd take the internship, kill it, and get a return offer. If you want to trade up for full time, you'll have to do so during the summer/early into the next academic year. Then return school for one more semester and just have fun. The opportunity cost for one semester isn't that high and the earning potential that first year w/o IBD is nothing close to your career earning potential in IBD.

Graduate after the extra semester. DO not return for a full year. Make the most out of your free time after you graduate and travel, study for the GMAT, and spend time with family/friends. Maybe teach yourself how to code, brush up on your modeling (look into Wall Street Prep & Macabacus), and continue to build your network. Maybe take it a step farther and intern at a small PE fund for a few months (don't tell the guys at your IBD gig though). That'll give you a leg up when it comes to PE recruiting. As for the chances of getting an off cycle PE gig, I don't know. It's all about your network...

Honestly it seems like you're in a good spot. (Assuming you get the FT offer), many are envious of your extra time in college and the time you'll have between graduating and starting.


Well shoot, I just read through the comments. Sorry that HR wouldn't work with you. Good luck with everything else - PM me if I can be of any assistance with your preparation. Look into editing your original post with updates so others don't make the same mistake.



In the future you need to learn how to use your frontal lobe and think ahead. If you were going to delay your graduation it would need to have seemed like a decision you made after you agreed, perhaps even after you got a return offer.

This may sound like subterfuge or dishonesty, but this exact same situation will occur throughout your career, probably about every 2-5 years if you stay in high finance. You will need to convince your bosses that you are interested in staying with the firm in your field of vision, while you will be either actively pursuing other opportunities (perhaps through recruiters) and otherwise considering one maybe even two career changes in advanced.

Honesty is good. Forest Gump honesty is unnecessary.

Best of luck with your golden retrievers


I did this and it was a great decision. I didn't get a return offer from a bulge bracket and delayed by a semester and was able to do another internship at a BB and got the return offer. Started fulltime. I know a kid from my school who didn't get an offer from a BB this summer and just got an offer to do an internship at an EB, so he is delaying graduation.


Hey! I've had a friend in the exact same position and he delayed his graduation by a semester. It gave him time to network/practice his skills enough that he found himself an internship. If you can afford it and really feel that you'd benefit from it, then do it. Take an easy no work course, and focus on recruitment.

Just an Undergrad trying to get a job. Something you disagree or dislike about my posts? Let me know by PM'ing me or commenting constructive criticism.

I know a girl who did exactly this. She had an internship in the BO at a BB. She realized she didn't want to be in the BO and leveraged the position to get an internship the following summer in the FO. She stayed an extra semester and got a minor then traveled for 4 months before starting full time. I really wish I had been as smart as her and had done that.

Cleverer schools have caught onto this work-around. For example, I've heard Yale requires that you graduate in four years as to prevent people from doing this sort of thing. Most schools are happy to take your money for another semester though...