Messed my college decision up, need help

Hi guys, I made a really big mistake when choosing colleges and it came back to bite me. I need help figuring out next steps and how to rectify this.

My parents are both doctors, and they've always pushed me towards a career in medicine. Up until last year I was completely locked in on medicine, but I became interested in finance (coincidentally through this site) prior to applying to schools. I spoke with my parents about applying to a couple of schools as an econ major, but they dissuaded me and pushed me towards medicine again. I was admitted to Johns Hopkins, Princeton, Columbia, Penn, Duke, Northwestern, and Cornell among a few other schools. I committed to JHU at the time because I was still pretty deadset on med after speaking with my parents.

For the last few months, I've been sourcing investments, doing research, and grunt work (taking notes on calls, etc) as an unpaid intern for a ~70 million aum local venture capital fund. I really, really enjoy the work and find it much preferable to what I'd be doing in medicine. However, after a lot of research on this site about JHU, it appears that Hopkins is essentially a nontarget for finance. I really regret not choosing Princeton, but it's unfortunately too late to go back and change that. Is there any way for me to find a top role in IB/PE/VC out of Johns Hopkins or is it near impossible? I'm also considering transferring if it isn't possible. Please drop any feedback or solutions below.


I would transfer if you can. You have some serious heavy hitters in the colleges you were accepted into and those have dedicated finance pipelines and alumni. Recruiting will be much easier coming from Princeton, Columbia, Cornell (congrats btw)

Is there anyone you can reach out to in admissions? You could always claim that you wanted to accept but couldn't because of whatever reason but your situation has changed for the better. If you got accepted once, I'd figure you have a leg up on other transfers since most of them will be people who got rejected and are trying again.


Although it might be slightly tougher from JHU, there are still tons of JHU alums on the street. I would start by reaching out to them for networking calls etc. instead of dwelling on the fact that you chose one great school over some other great schools.

I'm not sure what year you're in, but having a finance internship is great leverage and a strong start for a resume.

Don't overthink the past decision. Trust me, I come from a much much more "non-target" than JHU and I'm sure you're capable of landing something. Best of luck!  


Transferring is always a possibility.

JHU is not a finance target, but is still a very good school. You may have less alumni to network with but it is still very possible. Get good grades, acquire leadership roles on campus, reach out to those on the street, and prepare for the accelerated deadlines. You clearly are a smart person and I am sure you can make it happen.


Hi, feel free to dm me. I am a JHU alum who graduated a few years ago- I also applied as a premed and completely changed my mind after committing.

From what I’ve heard, the career center and on campus recruiting events have definitely improved since I left. I promise you are in a fine spot, and you can take solace in the fact that Econ is a very easy, non-cutthroat major at Hopkins so classes won’t be rough at all. The only difficulty will just be in networking and navigating the recruiting process.


Essentially all of the schools you got into are very transfer unfriendly, and I’m not sure they would hit if you tried to transfer in. despite its non target / semi status, it still is a T10 University and if you put in the work you will get good offers


I don’t think you’d have trouble with transfer apps if you want to go that route, or if you’re an incoming freshman (?) try to reach back out to adcoms — Cornell is very transfer friendly as they essentially have a “guaranteed transfer” option for students that were qualified but they didn’t have enough space for freshmen. My one concern would be you’d be applying Dyson or Wharton or Econ this time around while having a pre-med app previous season. Might not be a dealbreaker for some schools, but others that gave you offers under the impression that you wanted to go into medicine might think you’re flaky.

JHU isn’t bad either, and you may actually like it assuming you had some passion for medicine, but since you can transfer (and since I also went through the transfer process somewhat recently) I can tell you it’s worth a shot, and to start planning for it ASAP.


You will be fine. 

First off, transferring should be an option. Even if the top schools have very little room for transfers, you’re that rare candidate if you were admitted to Princeton.

Second, if transferring isn’t an option for whatever reason, you’ll be extremely well positioned for non-target recruiting considering you go to a school that everyone recognizes as top tier whether it’s a target or not.  Furthermore your early experience in VC and demonstrated passion will help. 

Lastly . . if you really like VC consider staying in the more science-oriented major and develop the finance skills in the side. That unique cred is ultimately respected in VC and other finance roles. 


The last paragraph here is some great advice. Consider double major or minor if you can pull it off and take advantage of what JHU can offer.

Also, get the list of everyone who took that class (noted above) and landed a position and start networking


Transfer to better school for your sophomore year. If you don’t, then just stick it out. JHU is still one of the best schools in the country, just not great for IB but still achievable.


Be a doctor.  You are smart enough to do it.

Dont make a rash career decision based on reading this site (cannot believe you said that).  Listen to your parents more...not the jokers here


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