Whats with the hate on non-targets?

I get that non-targets have less on-campus recruiting and alum on the street, but why do ppl on this forum act like they're less intelligent or not as suited for a career in finance as some kid that goes to Stern who knows nothing but how to build a DCF. The non-target grind is different, I just don't understand the hate.

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Let me try and help you out.  Regardless of what you're reading on here, it just simply doesn't matter.  Targets hate on non-targets because they think non-targets aren't as smart, otherwise they would be targets.  Non-targets hate on targets because they are spoiled by opportunity because they tried hard in high school.  This is all just lazy stereotyping from predominately children, and the odd spastic 40 year old, to kill time and get a rise out of the other side.

It's not worth spending your energy trying to read into it in any way. 


damn you really called out smoke frog with that 40 yr old comment


I don’t think it’s hate, it’s just a meme that we all accept as truth. 

The non targets sacrifice their entire life in undergrad to join 4-6 finance clubs, be officer of their investment fund which nobody cares about, maintain a 3.9 gpa in their business school that nobody’s heard about, and do 6 internships at no-name boutiques so they can land at Jefferies. They grind harder than humanly possible to land a MM PE offer doing commercial scale door hinge company buyouts in Idaho at a $2bn fund. 

The targets get into their top college through legacy and daddy’s donations, study history and get a 3.7 while interning at their uncle’s private equity firm, start full time at JP Morgan and either quit within a year because they just experienced real work for the first time in their lives or got a $5k bottom bucket bonus, or they get promoted straight up to group head without knowing how to build a dcf by talking about golf and vacation spots. The ones that quit end up living in daddy’s Hampton house anyway.

There is no other path. 


Written like a true target attender who wants to be seen as a rich kid, but in reality is just a middle class citizen hiding behind the guise of a stereotypical target student.

If your dad owns a house in the hamptons you don’t work in IB. You go work for a non-profit or start a clothing company.


Written like a true target attender who wants to be seen as a rich kid, but in reality is just a middle class citizen hiding behind the guise of a stereotypical target student.

If your dad owns a house in the hamptons you don't work in IB. You go work for a non-profit or start a clothing company.

Idk about the first part but the second part is definitely true. Children of UHNW people love the nonprofit space because the optics look great on the family (and of course they have moral supremacy). Non-profit work for these types of folks is typically fundraising and networking, essentially building social capital for the family. This also is a way higher ROI on time than going to be some analyst at JP/some BB


Going to have to disagree with you. My fellow analyst’s dad has a nice house in the Hamptons. This person went to a “super target” because of legacy. Just because you’re rich doesn’t mean you don’t work in IB.


Once you get into industry, no one gives a flying fuck. We're all just corporate slaves.

Get to IB, Get to PE, Become a Partner, Die. Just don't fuck it up when I ask you to align some logos for me.


Just my experience so far in my intern group, every target intern has no previous technical knowledge, no prior relevant experience and was an athlete at some point or still is. This is extremely anecdotal but I was shocked how dumb they all are for being targets tbh.


Well yea because they're athletes. Tons athletes at targets got in through being recruited and most of them likely wouldn't have (academically speaking) otherwise. This is especially true at Ivies where the bar is much lower for a recruited athlete than regular applicants.


I’ve been highly unimpressed with the Ivy League in training this year to say the least


In Reality? Many of them aren´t as smart. Scoring a good SAT and getting admitted is about being smart AND being mature enough to see the importance of it. Being smart isnt about being smart, but also identifying opportunities and investments(Tuition fees) that pay for themselves.


Getting into a target school isn't as easy as getting a high SAT and good gpa these days


This. There are a surprising amount of non target schools that are sub-15% acceptance rates


Scoring on the SAT and getting a good GPA aren’t about being smart, they’re about dedication. It doesn’t take much intellect or brainpower to do well in those areas, it just takes dedication and prep


Spoken like a true privileged target student. You may not have realised, but some people come from homes and schools who place zero importance on education and have very little idea of why going to a top college is a massive advantage. The environment around you is a major factor in your work ethic.


Actually, its quite the opposite. I´m from a comparatively poor single parent household, started working with 16 cause we had no money and now started studying at 20, at the best public university of the country as my sister finished her studies. If you really want you can. You just have to work hard enough or simply be smart enough.


I could use all of your advice on this actually. I have a BA and Master of Public Policy (MPP) from UMass Amherst, and am currently pursuing an MBA at Illinois Gies College of Business. I've worked in nonprofit advocacy, state government, the Obama White House as a political appointee, with as a senior executive assistant supporting executive teams scaling two tech startups (SaaS b2b) from Series A/B through acquisitions and successful IPOs, and then spent some time supporting a principal and VP at TPG. Now I'm getting my MBA and hoping to land some sort of iBanking analyst role to get my foot in the door. I have very diverse experience, but what are your thoughts on my chances at some of the top places? I'm in my low 30s, so maybe too old for summer analyst roles, but not experienced in finance enough yet for summer associate roles. And I don't think Gies is a feeder school. Any thoughts would be appreciated. I really want to try my hand at investment banking; I'm a really strong worker :). 


I hate on the guys at Stern too, barely a semi-target for anything other than low-tier BBs (HYP student)


Uh this is a joke right? Stern places better than most low tier Ivies due to how hardo their environment is. Yeah sure due to volume and cutthroat experience, but there is no other school that is built for IB/PE like Stern. It's almost demoralizing because of how much it feels like a trade school for finance rather than a typical college experience LMAO


Insecurity: possibly the strongest driver of success I’ve noticed in non-target vs target interns. That chip on the shoulder really makes a noticeable difference in attitudes. Most target interns I see just aren’t as hungry IMO.


Target, non-target, diversity

The above is just a proof of 1) How messed up some people are in this site, and 2) How messed up the US is. Your educational system is made to shut the door for people that don’t come from money, and people still have the nerve to hate on those who isn’t lucky enough to be born in a rich home? Add to the fact that no one decides which home they will grow up, it’s just plain luck. It’s actually just sick, and really trashy


Stop bothering about what other people think. 

Focus on your mission and execute what you need to obtain your goals. Don't get side tracked by the bullshit. 

When I was in my 20s I had that nonsense in my head, as you grow up you'll soon realize that everyone has different goals and a different path. 

I couldn't care where people went to school or university. I care if they've got hustle, work hard, smart, intellectually curious, decent soft skills and treat their colleagues with respect. These people make the best bankers.

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As a non target, I can tell you. It’s not much “hate”, more like not taking us seriously. Personally, i really think I could’ve made it to Target School, I had 1460 SAT (first time try). 3.8 GPA entire highschool. APs were good, no volunteer work tho. Parents can afford a good college. But I went to non target cuz my parents told me “U are going to Med school, so university doesn’t matter. Go to a uni that will give u a full scholarship”……. But i knew from first moment that I wanted to get into Finance, and Investment banking. And it’s too much of hurdle to switch schools now. So, I’ll just stick it out. I do have a vast network, from boutique IBs to BBs, but i know it’s gonna be hella hard to get the offer. 


Personally, I think your wrong. Damn near every non-diversity kid at a target gunning for these jobs at a target has a 3.8 plus. Even if you did somehow pull off a target with that mediocre sat score, If you could barely manage a 3.8 in high school, you probably wouldn't survive. Please stop adding to the cope on this sight.



Personally, I think your wrong. Damn near every non-diversity kid at a target gunning for these jobs at a target has a 3.8 plus. Even if you did somehow pull off a target with that mediocre sat score, If you could barely manage a 3.8 in high school, you probably wouldn't survive. Please stop adding to the cope on this sight.

site Mr. Holier Than Thou targeter


sorry dude but you're retarded. I know middle schoolers who have gotten higher than 1460 - you're dreaming if you think that's competitive for anything above T50


I'll add my two cents as someone who went from scouring WSO posts as a non-target freshman to an analyst in a top group to now the buyside.

First I think WSO is not indicative of people's actual sentiment. As said above, this whole forum is a meme lol. There's a lot of useful knowledge on this forum and it helped me learn how to network / how to land a job on Wall Street. But all the BS shitting on non-targets didn't help and couldn't be far from the truth. In my group, the top bucket analysts were all non-targets. I think I burnt out very early on in banking, ended up hating it, only doing the bare minimum, and focused my efforts on recruiting. But now that I am out of it and went to a much more chill VC role, I am looking back and seeing many positives. In my group, the top performers were all non-targets.

I used to look down on them too as kiss-asses or people who just have no innate talent or internal mission (which to be honest I still think about bankers, especially seeing the work they send me now) but I do have a newfound respect as I realized banking is one of the few places that is truly a meritocracy and rewards hard work. Their race, gender, schooling had zero effect on how they placed, it was just how hard they grinded. I started seeing a girl who was by far the best analyst in her group and she never felt any pushback from her male superiors. They saw her kick ass and they put her in place of the other male analysts when those guys fucked up. She worked harder and worked better and was paid / promoted accordingly. I know a guy of color who just consistently grinded with a positive attitude and was a blast to go out with and he was rewarded accordingly and now is on fast-track for an early promotion. I love my current job, find the work 100x more meaningful, and would never go back to banking - but when you face actual bureaucracy you realize that banking is truly a meritocracy.

The people who actually struggled were the Ivy League kids / privileged dudes who were handed everything to them. They'd be shocked to see the above individuals performing and that they actually had to compete. And it's not like they are being lazy, they really did try their best to compete. That being said, the non-targets who grinded to get to where they were in life, already had that work ethic, determination, and focus on their long-term goals. Thus they had the momentum and framework that allowed them to hit the ground running. The Ivy League kids had to learn to go get after what they want, and thus the lag and possibly the hate towards the non-targets. That being said, I know a few Ivy League kids who accepted the situation and learned the grind themselves and developed the same mindset as the non-targets, so it's possible to get there from either background - but in my experience going to a non-target actually gives an analyst an advantage in grind, work ethic, and also just plain social skills which go way further than any degree or background.


This really just boils down to why people value prestige - in a world with limited resources, we're forced to compete against one another to accumulate wealth and status. A prestigious education/job/etc signifies power and access, and our brains are wired to covet these things. I think people that hate on non-targets do so as a combination of arrogance and desire to uphold their organization's brand/reputation (i.e. John works at xyz firm, recently they started accepting more non-target kids and he's worried his firm's brand will suffer as a result)...


Prestige is an old money mindset - and old money has already been dying. I think prestige in wall street is now dead too as many of the first non-targets that were hired have risen the ranks and are now in leadership / senior banker roles thus they only value those who can work as hard as them. Yes certain schools are going to get OCR but it's much easier than ever to get into Wall Street with a non-target background and it's becoming easier to get into your buyside dreams. Many non-targets are now in MF roles. In other words, we're breaking down the walls ;)


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