UVA Undergrad for IB Recruiting
Here is a comprehensive guide to Undergrad Banking recruiting at UVA.
First off, to provide some background, UVA offers a very interesting value proposition for someone interested in IB. Compared to most other borderline target/semi-target schools, UVA is cheaper (especially in-state) and has a higher acceptance rate-- so it's definitely a great option if top targets are out of reach or money is a big stumbling block.
The only public school that is comparable to UVA is Michigan. That's it. Other top publics (UCLA/UCB/UT/UNC) do not compare in placement/capita or (in my opinion) quality of placements. There are a lot of reasons that could explain this disparity, but, in the long-run, I think UMich/UVA have been able to separate themselves with their large alumni bases that are incredibly loyal and have a massive sense of school spirit/pride. To provide an example, when I was going through recruiting, I received ~70% response rate from cold emails to alumni; that's really strong for a school with 16k undergrad.
Also, anyone that still argues that getting into McIntire affects recruiting is blatantly wrong. With how accelerated recruiting has become, nearly every bank is done with recruiting by the time that any McIntire students have started a single class in the Fall of their 3rd year. If recruiting decelerates again, it could become a factor, but it currently holds no weight.
Touching on how to best position yourself to secure interviews/offers, the majority of recruiting for top firms/groups runs through the on-campus clubs. Although you do see kids every year that get top jobs w/ no affiliation to any major clubs, it is definitely more of a crapshoot, and almost none of these kids go to EBs.
The reason these clubs are the major pipeline can be explained for multiple reasons:
Self-Selection bias towards these top clubs. The kids that get in are generally some of the most driven students, and have a strong interest in banking from the start. They also have solid resumes to back it up.
Technical Prep- Unlike some other schools, we don't have a school-run "Investment Banking Workshop"-- shout out my IU Kelly homies -- so the training programs, recruiting materials, and club alumni on the street give club members a huge advantage over their peers.
Club-specific Networking and Resume Drops- Some top firms have club networking/resume drops that only include a few of the top UVA clubs.
I know that all you prospects care about is rankings, so here is a ranking of UVA clubs for banking recruiting.
Tier 1: MII/AIF
Tier 2: Akpsi Business Fraternity
Tier 3: VVF/GMG/SWS
Tier 4: Everyone else
To touch on each one a little more in-depth:
McIntire Investment Institute (MII) -- Student-run Hedge Fund that was started in 1985 by a donation from "Tiger Cub" John Griffin. They broke $1M AUM last year, and then donated $500k back to McIntire (so currently have ~$5-600k AUM). This club is the most long-standing of the major finance clubs at UVA, with the most robust alumni network based on its longevity alone. Generally, they have 60-80 students in the club depending on the year, and tout an acceptance rate of Analyst -> Associate -> Portfolio Manager (with special distinctions for President, CIO, etc). There are a couple MII-specific pipelines, the most "prestigious" being HL RX. Correct me if I'm wrong, but one of the group's global heads is a UVA guy, and the club generally sends 1-2 sophomore Portfolio Manager superstars to their NY office, specifically for RX (which only takes ~10 every year in NY, according to one of my friends. Again, correct me if that number is off).
The Alternative Investment Fund (AIF) -- Another student-run investment fund, this group is significantly newer than MII (started in 2007). Although MII has the legacy, AIF seems to be considered slightly more prestigious by current students because of its smaller size (40-60 students) and mix of funds (Relative Value, Global Macro, Special Sits, and Risk vs MII's pure value-oriented L/S). To talk about actual AUM, AIF has something around 30k, but it makes sense with how new they still are. Like MII, they have a well-developed training program in the first semester, and structure is Analyst-> Management (with special distinctions for CEO, CIO, etc). AIF has their own AIF-specific pipelines, with the most "prestigious" being Evercore M&A, which generally goes to their sophomore Management superstars.
Talking to friends in both AIF and MII, AIF seems to have more of a technical focus in interviews, while MII is looking to take the brightest kids they can find. Both interview candidates every Fall, and sometimes take a class of students in the Spring, too. Generally, both clubs include 1+ screening rounds, in addition to in-person interviews. Across both clubs, you see many students with special university distinctions (Jefferson, Echols scholars) and countless kids with top 1% test scores (1550+ SAT/ 35+ ACT). If you're able to get into either club, you're definitely on the inside track to get a banking job.
If I had to put a number to it, I would say these two clubs make up about 25-40% of all UVA banking placements, and a wildly disproportionate amount of the placement to EBs/RX groups (65-80%). The 5-10 kids that reach a management role (between the two clubs) by sophomore spring for recruiting place lights out, with nearly all of them going to Boutiques/RX (if they aren't one of the handful of kids that go straight to the buy side). Outside of those top candidates, you still see really strong placement across the board for other members across BB/EB/MM. Also, a few Engineers/CS kids end up in these two clubs, and nearly all of them go to Top tech.
UVA has very few buy side opps compared to other target/semi-targets, but these clubs + a Jefferson Scholar Distinction are the best ways to set yourself up to end up at one of the few places that recruit from UVA to the buy side. Also, mentioning the buy side, all of the UVA pipelines to PE/HF aren't to top funds, so most students seem to view EBs/BBs > normal UVA PE/HF opps (Alpine Investors, Roark Capital, etc). This is not to say that you don't see 1 off kids go to better places on the buy-side (GTCR Analyst Program Summer -> FT, EVR M&A Summer -> WP FT). These just aren't the norm, so most kids seem to focus on banking.
Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity (Akpsi) -- Business fraternity. Huge drop-off from the top two clubs. They haze kids with technicals, and honestly have a really terrible reputation. The best way to think of them is that they're the hardos that weren't smart enough to get into the top clubs, and are also not sociable enough to get into normal Greek life (which has a big presence at UVA). They are Tier 2 based purely on job/McIntire placement (they prep members well for interviews). Personally, I would not touch this group with a 10-foot pole, but I've heard that their job placement is decent. If someone is unsure about Finance v Consulting, this can be a really solid place to go because they are less Finance-skewed and prep kids for both.
Virginia Venture Fund (VVF) -- The top club with a VC/PE focus. Outside of the Big 2, I would say that this is the club that garners the most respect in finance circles. They also tout a relatively low acceptance rate (not sure of the exact number, but I would say it falls somewhere in the 10-30% range), and have a decent amount of kids that are also members of MII/AIF. They have great partnerships (Bessemer, etc), and do the best LBO prep of any club. Looking at VVF vs. Akspi, VVF beats Akspi in everything except interview/technical prep and placement for banks.
Global Markets Group (GMG) -- Don't know a lot about them. They're the most comparable club to MII/AIF from an organizational standpoint, with ~$10k in global equities. I think the best way to describe them is solid, as one of the fringe clubs that garners just enough interest to need to reject applicants. I would assume they take somewhere between 40-60% of applicants, but don't really end up with top kids (like you sometimes see in Akpsi and VVF) because they don't offer anything unique relative to the top 2 UVA finance clubs. Placement is probably okay.
Smart Women Securities (SWS) -- A very new, and still relatively small club, this group is definitely the biggest riser in recent years. They've taken advantage of the Male lean within the top 2 UVA clubs, and built out a really solid platform for Female investors. While the top female applicants are still MII/AIF, this group definitely punches above their weight and could definitely become a fringe 1st/2nd tier in the next few years. If they continue to take advantage of the diversity-focus at banks, they should continue to grow their placement. Also, they seem to have a large cohort of international students, maybe ⅓ of their members being East-Asian internationals. I know a couple girls here, and the best way to describe them would be sharp, polished, and confident. No idea about acceptance rate.
Everyone Else-- You could probably argue that there should be some stratification across the rest of the UVA Finance clubs, but it's largely insignificant. None of them have amazing training programs, all lack any sort of structured banking pipelines, and only add value by highlighting your Finance interest on a resume.
Recruiting (General Trends/By Bank):
UVA gets looks from most of the top banks across the street, with the strongest applicants generally ending up at EBs. UVA Greek life is also very prominent, and there seems to be some frat-specific pipelines to a couple banks, too (although these pipelines are incredibly muted when compared to clubs).
Also, due to UVA's proximity to NYC, the large majority of our placements are to NY offices.
(Trying to avoid Capital Markets)
Evercore: 2-4 M&A / year
PJT: 2-3 M&A / year (also a couple currently RSSG, but think they're both FT laterals)
Centerview: 2 currently there FT, no pipeline
Lazard: 1-2 M&A / year
Moelis: 2 currently there FT, no pipeline (old pipeline broken by multiple reneges years ago)
Perella Weinberg: no pipeline, but heard some kid got 2021
Guggenheim: 4-8 / year (1-2 RX), big uva pipeline
Greenhill: 1-2 / year (0-1 RX)
Houlihan Lokey: 4-10 / year (1-3 RX), huge uva pipeline
Jefferies: 4-8 / year, big uva pipeline
Rothschild: 1-3 / year
William Blair: no pipeline
Baird: no pipeline, 1 currently there FT
Wells Fargo: 4-8 / year
HW: 3 / year
GS: 1-2 / year, but just got upgraded to core target so this year will probably be different; assuming 3-5 / year now
MS: no pipeline, but think 0-2 / year
JPM: 2-6 / year
BAML: 3-6 / year
CS: 4-10 / year, head of Sponsors is a UVA grad and he treks down himself for info sessions
Citi: 0-2 / year, non-core for Citi
Barclays: 1-3 / year
UBS: 0-2 / year
DB: no pipeline?
RBC: 1 current SA, no pipeline
Everything above is estimates, don't take these numbers as fact. There are also other, smaller banks that also have UVA pipelines: Stifel, Piper, DC Advisory, etc.
no worries, happy to help
pretty rockstar post
"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
I think Wells takes a good amount more than that, but other than that I'd agree w pretty much everything
Yeah, I think you're right. if you have a number in mind, I can update it.
EDIT: Just updated it to 4-8 / year
Thanks for taking the time to write this up! Made an account just for this lol. A quick follow up: Do you know what the MII/AIF interviews look like for first semester first years? Is it mostly behavioral stuff about why finance etc. or do they give more concrete questions?
If I were to speak on that, it would just be a guess. I would check out the websites for MII/AIF, and potentially reach out to members of their management teams.
I can guarantee you that they could give you more concrete info than I could.
Citi is weird here. S&T presentation at school, not sure about IB but possibly core.
OP here, just updated to include your Wells number.
I also know for a fact that we're now non-core for Citi IB, although that wasn't always the case
It is impossible to get a job at Credit Suisse unless you are in 1 of 2 fraternities and 1 of 2 sorority
Thanks for this really helpful
Lifesaver. I'm in state for UVA, so i'm sure I'll enjoy the read :)
current Uva student here. Assuming this is just for IB I can second this. Though Houlihan Lokey is definitely lower than 6-12. I'll probably put it at 4-8.
Yeah, I can see that. They seem to fluctuate a lot YoY. I'm going to update it to 4-10 to split the difference. Appreciate the feedback.
PJT RSSG interviews had a reputation for being brutal when I was on campus, not to mention the process being extremely H/W heavy. Not suprised the FTs had to lateral in considering you had to be superhuman to land one of their 1-2 spots for non-ivy students; funny because even though its the best Rx group on the street and kids would try every year, it was literally the only one that didn't have heavy UVA representation
Good catch, forgot about HW. I think it's ~3 / year. Will update with that, unless you have a more accurate number in mind
Awesome stuff- one thing, do most of the kids into IB come from McIntire or just the buisness school?
What even is this question? Try again.
McIntire is the undergraduate business school
you are wrong about the west coast public schools, you probably don't see many on the east coast but they dominate the LA/SF scene.
I never said they don't dominate the West Coast placement. The issue with your argument is that there are so few spots on the West Coast in comparison to NYC, so your placement/capita is worse at those schools.
There's also the argument that the quality of placements is generally worse for UCLA/UCB, because most West Coast offices are satellite offices (not all, but the large majority). If you're looking to do anything other than Tech banking, the West Coast is not the best place to be. Take this in comparison to NYC, where you see the most prominent groups for nearly every vertical bar Tech (LA/SF), Industrials (Chicago), and O&G (Houston).
While you are correct in that there are less spots on the west coast (a west coast team may take 5-10 summer analysts compared to 40 at a large BB in NYC) there are also significantly less schools to compete with. Think about how many east coast targets there are: all of the ivies, NYU, the east coast public targets, MIT, UChicago, JHU, etc. Now compare that to the west coast: UCB, UCLA, USC, Stanford (surprisingly Stanford kids don't really go into IB that often) and ofc there are a few from east cost schools but those are far less. So actually per capita its comparable at UCLA/UCB to the placement numbers you posted above.
You are wrong about the quality of placements, the majority of groups on the west coast are tech groups which in itself is a very large vertical. Some of the best groups period are on the west coast think GS TMT, MS Menlo, CS LA FSG, Moelis LA etc. You are right about non tech IB though, however besides HC groups, there really aren't that many west coast groups that are not tech. Point is, given that there is less competition, the existing tech groups on the west coast have enough capacity to provide strong placement for the west coast targets, on par with the numbers you posted above. If you actually look at the junior classes for groups like GS TMT the large majority of them went to west coast targets and that is true for most of the west coast tech groups.
Can you get into MII/AIF as a sophomore or is it only something you can only get in your freshman year? I'm thinking about trying to transfer UVA for fall 2021, will be a freshman at a non-target this fall.
I believe you can apply any year
Speaking from experience, I applied to both clubs during 2nd year after transferring and did not get an interview with either. In fairness, I had a hideous resume and little-to-no technical knowledge so they probably made the right call at the time. If you come prepared (apps are due the first couple weeks of school), you might have a shot.
this has 0 value to me but good on you for doing this for the specificity. maybe I'll do one for my school / people will start doing guides like this for their schools, would be interested in seeing if you could add more of the unique buy side placements / places people have gone. l tried recruiting for buyside and beyond the popular 5-10 didn't know of many with analyst programs e.g. didn't know GTCR had an SA program
are you telling me that if I want to transfer to uva for my junior year most of the recruiting is already over?
For IB, yes
that's shitty, there goes my plan :/
I think this is fairly helpful albeit a little bit outdated (i.e. AIF is definitely above MII - MII had to restructure their org a few years ago since a lot of members just weren't active). I'd also say that from what I've heard from friends, the most competitive org is VVF (since they only take ~10 kids, their acceptance rate, according to a friend, was around 6-7%). Not sure how well they do otherwise but since it's the only buyside club it kind of makes sense that it's the most competitive. Could be wrong though...
my guy, I don't know why you have a hard-on for VVF, but they're definitely not the most exclusive finance club at uva haha. not even close.
also, when I say sub 10% acceptance rate for AIF/MII, I'm not giving an actual number because it depends on the # of applicants that year. there's a reason those two dwarf VVF every year in terms of total applicants...
also, in regards to AIF v MII, I don't think the take is outdated. MII's reorg has nothing to do with their placement, and both clubs have the same level of name recognition outside the university. once you reach the level of those 2, it's more dependent on the individual to secure an offer, not their club affiliation. top kids from both clubs go to tier 1 banks (i.e. managers from both almost always go EBs/Buy-side)
student at uva and a lot of people have been mentioning the WP guy, how do you think he broke into WP from uva? like you mentioned, our buyside opportunities haven't been great
Top junior year SA spot and all-around very hardworking, sociable and intelligent
hope I didn't make the wrong choice by picking NYU now lmao...
Lol you made the right choice. Everyone likes to hype up their own state school (Mich, UVA, Indiana, Texas @ Austin, etc.).
UVA is so white lmao. If you are not white, your chances are slim.
why the ms its true
Idk man, looking at the people in leadership positions on the top clubs websites, all races, especially asians, seem to be pretty well represented.
Besides, UVA has a lower % of white people than both Michigan and UNC, and about on par with Georgetown and some of the Ivys like Yale, Princeton, and Dartmouth. I'm really not sure why it gets such a bad rep for being a "white school" when it's really not far from the ordinary at most top schools.
There's one SA at UBS
white people getting mad lol
What were the renges for Moelis for?
From talking to people at UVA i believe a few years ago 3-4 people had offers from Moelis, 1 kid chose GS over Moelis and I think 2 others leveraged their Moelis offer for Evercore
rising 4th yr in the comm school, in IB this summer. nice post, very accruate
appreciate the feedback. we're both anon here, but we most likely know each other haha
'24 here. What are your best non-finance UVA tips
do you mean general tips about uva?
I can attest that if you want to go to Evercore, your only hope is AIF, but I do disagree with your claim that McIntire doesn't help at all. It's not as helpful as it used to be/could be, but it can matter in some circumstances.
is this true? like are they not interviewing someone from MII? how can they always take someone from AIF?
Just trying to understand
Would you say the club selecting process is pretty arbitrary? See many qualified people didn't get it
To be honest, I'm not sure. You probably can still get an interview if you're in MII, but I think all of the people I know going to Evercore are in AIF. They seem to have a really strong pipeline for whatever reason. I am in neither club for the record, but I am pretty involved with another investment club.
Class of 21 here,good job at being honest. Can say this is pretty accurate. Our buyside recruiting has gotten significantly better though, and some of these banks like Citi and MS that don't hire us for M&A tend to hire quite a bit for S&T 1-4/yr. Cheers
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