Admission decision MIM/MSF HEC vs Bocconi vs ESCP


I have been fortunate enough to be admitted to the following programs:

  • HEC Paris MiM (no scolarship; focusing on M2 International Finance specialisation)

  • Bocconi Msc Finance (100% scolarship)

  • ESCP MiM (no scolarship, finance specialisations)

I have also applied to LBS MFA, where I got an interview, but due to conflicting deadlines (I have to pay the deposit for the abovementioned unis before the LBS results deadline) and the fact that I already studied in the UK before and would like to have new experiences, I will choose between ESCP/HEC/Bocconi.

My goal would be to work in Equity Research in London post-graduation and I hold a pre-settled status (until 2025). My end goal would be HF/AM at some point in the future. I don't speak French or Italian. I know A1/A2 Spanish.

Now, from a personal perspective, HEC Paris is located outside of Paris, and I would much rather like to live in the city. ESCP allows me to study in Paris and also in Madrid where I could improve on my Spanish. Bocconi is in the center of Milan which I like. Not sure how international students are treated in any of those places. Here, ESCP >= Bocconi >>>>> HEC.

From a professional perspective, for London recruiting, I have heard Bocconi == HEC >>>> ESCP. Curriculum might be more enjoyable at HEC (more practical), but the quantitative knowledge gained at Bocconi can't hurt in the future. As a note, I like math and don't mind a highly quantitative curriculum as long as it adds value in the future. ESCP has good curriculum as well (practical), but the career opportunities (as far as I have heard) are not as good as the ones for students from HEC/Bocconi.

My view is that I should go with Bocconi (equal career opportunities to HEC, good course; + no tuition vs 45 000 Euros at HEC).

My question: Is there any reason to which HEC/ESCP might edge out as better alternatives? I am worried I might not have considered all factors.

Thank you.


Hi, Bocconi student here. Just to give you some insights, here the MiF is high in ranking (prob 6/7) but it’s very very tough. Be prepared to study all day every day. Hec is way easier but since it’s MiM and you have to pay l’ll go with the Bocconi one.

Note that l’d like to go outside Italy for my Master therefore lm not really biased towards Bocconi.

However note that if you don’t have the right to work in UK it’s gonna be tough and here the language requirements always have italian too.

Best of luck


Hi, thank you for the response.

How is the student life at Bocconi? (societies, clubs, parties, people, etc. ). I saw some information on the website but obviously it does not paint a 100% accurate picture.

In terms of studying, as long as it's somewhat useful and I also have 4-5 hours free per day for other stuff, I don't mind. 

For the UK, I have a pre-settled status which gives me the right to work in the UK until 2025. I'll be graduating in 2024, so I'll have the right to work then, get a job, and figure the work visa after.


Current student as well. In terms of student life it is very solid. A lot of clubs and dinners frequently. It comes down how social you are and the balance you are looking for. As stated above the MSF at Bocconi is brutal and very quantitative. Both HEC and Bocconi are great choices. I would lean towards HEC because it's not nearly as challenging (from what I have heard anecdotally) and it places very well into finance in London. But we are also talking about marginal differences in terms of recruiting, both alumni networks are very strong in London.  


Yes social life is active but it all depends on you. Personally l have a good gpa but this comes with a lot of days in which lm home and can't go out. Unfortunately you have this trade-off (at least if you are a normal individual) between social life and gpa. The problem is that you don't have 4/5 hours free per day if you want to get 29 in the MiF at Bocconi. Also please check the details of you scholarship because l know that some swiss friends have it too for the first year and for the second only if they have a minimum gpa of i don't remember how much, but it was quite high and they ended up paying the fee for the second year (which is quite high)If you can afford it go to hec also because it's better in the ranking and the amount of work let you time for networking and studying technicals or whatever ;)


Hi, clearly pick HEC Paris. Super solid network and alumni. Bocconi is also a really good alternative considering the scholarship. Going to ESCP just because of location would be a really stupid and bad idea, much worse network and alumni (especially in France) :)


Thanks for the response. Would you say HEC Paris's network and alumni base are that much stronger compared to Bocconi? I have heard before that they are equal for London recruitment, with HEC being better for France and Bocconi for Italy.

Currently, what is edging Bocconi higher up for me is cost and location. 

How is ESCP seen in London? Looking on Linkedin, I saw quite a lot of alumni in IB in London (not that many in ER though). I also heard it is more IBD/Consulting focused as opposed to AM/HF/ER.


ESCP network is much worse in London compared to both. Now thinking again since you have full ride I would go to Bocconi. But I recommend you leave Italy once you finish your degree and go to London (and stay there long term if you can). 


Yep, that is my final goal. London ER -> HF/AM. Perhaps move to an emerging country afterwards, but that's just a thought and would be much later down the line (10+ years maybe).


If money is not a driver go for HEC. In terms of securing a summer in ER in London, there´s not gonna be much difference between Bocco and HEC (myself did ESSEC MiF and got a summer in an American BB so it is more up to you than Bocco vs HEC). However, HEC may open doors for AM/HF roles in Paris (no need to speak French). I am refering to places like Comgest, Amirall, Varenne, BDL, Aragon, Spinnecap... (offers only via career services of ESCP/HEC/ESSEC) + MM already recruting juniors in Paris... which may be good places to build a strong CV with prior buyside experience to stand out in London once doing your FT ER stint (assuming you are sure you wanna do AM/HF). 

BTW, if you are sure you wanna do AM/HF, goal should be securing a summer in the buy-side already, so while applying to SS summers don´t forget the TRP, Fidos etc


Hi, thanks for the response

Would it be better to work in HF/AM from the start or does the sell-side add potentially good value for a career within this sector? I plan on recruiting on the buy-side as well, but am not sure whether doing sell-side first might be a better option (both from a knowledge and career opportunities perspective).

Money is potentially a driver (HEC is 45k EUR more expensive). I could pay it, but if the difference is marginal, I wonder of the cost-benefit analysis of this. My mind is kind of set on Bocconi also for personal reasons (I'd much rather live in the city compared to 1.5h away from Paris; no gym on HEC campus; 3 year vs 2 year programme).

Most Helpful

1) Difficult to answer. It all depends on you (do you already have a clear preference towards L.O vs HF, SM vs MM, Growth vs Value etc) and what offers are you able to land on the buy-side.  On my case, I ended up with offers from both sell-side and buy-side for summers and ended up taking the SS one since I think it offers more optionality (and higher comp in the short-term albeit this should not be the main driver TBH)

2) HEC is not 3Y. It can be 2Y as well or 3Y including a gap year, which you could use to do a couple of 6 months off-cycle on the buy-side in Paris (also in London there are HF willing to take European guys like Primestone or Amber (Amber should be defo doable from Bocco I guess)

3) Agree, HEC is not worth 45k vs Bocconi

So if I were you I´d stick to Bocconi and would start to prepare the next recruitng cycle ASAP. It´s a numbers game, precisely in London where recruiting is so random. So work hard on securing a summer and forget about the GPA (don´t really know why people are so obsessed with grades at Bocco). Once you have it you will see things clearer. 


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