Logistics of getting into MM IB

Not particularly interested in BB, but a MM located in my hometown that does very well within our region. I'm close friends with one of the MD's from there. The problem is that I am pretty late to the game and have not yet had any IB experience. Initially, I was set on becoming an actuary and took the first three exams, but now I think I would be happier doing IB as the work seems more rewarding. Some background: I'm a junior math and philosophy major in honors at a target university with a 3.2 GPA (I know it's super low, which mostly has to do with the death of a family member during my sophomore year, but I also know that it's just still not competitive). The MD told me that the bank really loves seeing applicants from my university and that they recruit there.

I've been studying for the CFA as well (have been studying for it since studying for the actuary exams, but have to wait until I'm a senior to be able to take the first of the three exams), which might help to show that I have a good understanding of finance even though I didn't major in it.

I go to school in a very small town, so there isn't really any option for me to do an IB internship during the school year, but I have been taking to a small VC firm that is local and has done very well for itself. This venture capital firm is closely tied with an investment bank about 2 hours away from campus that offers summer IB internships only to seniors, so there might be an opportunity there for me to gain IB experience. 

Thought I'd get some anonymous advice before potentially burning and bridges and making a fool of myself. Just give it to me straight. 

Comments (3)

Most Helpful
  • Associate 3 in IB-M&A
Jan 7, 2022 - 10:57pm

Why not ask the MD what you need to do to get into a firm like his? If you're already a junior you've missed internship recruiting and will have to stay an extra semester and try to recruit for SA 2023, unless the MD is a big guy at the firm and can get a spot for you.

CFA is really useless for IB. The time spent on it way, way, WAY outweighs any value you will get from it - more important for fields like AM. Don't bother, take the SIE if you want to show finance acumen with a certification. That will take you maybe a month, tops, to learn from no knowledge.

The VC firm would be a super option. You should also try to get an internship this summer (either VC firm or elsewhere) to position yourself well for recruiting. Also, you need to network aggressively. I'd do a search on here to find a game plan. Overall, unless your MD friend is very connected and can land you a spot on his own, it's an uphill battle for you - you will probably need to delay graduation and you definitely need to spend that time getting your GPA above 3.5

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Jan 7, 2022 - 11:12pm

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