Should I transfer to a super target? (COVID-19 edition)

I will be entering a target school (Dartmouth, Duke, UChicago, Brown) this fall and I'm wondering if I should transfer to a super target (HYPW or maybe Columbia) after my first year--if I get accepted, of course. It seems that COVID will make it difficult to network as a first year anyways, so I'm thinking that transferring might not be so harmful. Am I wrong to think this?

Btw I know a target school will already give me a big enough boost, but I've heard that super targets can provide even more networking opps for IB, offer rates, and prestige that can help me years down the line in my career. So is it worth making this jump? Or should I be happy where I am?

I mean, I don’t think there’s a reason to not apply to transfer. If you don’t get in, at least you applied. If you do get in, then you can take into account your finances, the social situation at both schools, and other factors. Ultimately, I think your goal should be to do well this year so that if you decide to apply to transfer, you have a good shot of getting in. Try to get a good GPA and get involved on campus and many options will open up at both your school and one you want to transfer to.

And don’t forget to have fun! You’re already in a really good school, and you’ll have a max of 4 years here. Take a break every so often and just chill with friends.

It would appear like you're chasing prestige. You're going to a target school so no reason to transfer

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My school is a semi-target for some places, complete non-target for most. I heard about investment banking last fall and I’m recruiting for a 2021 SA position. Quickly scraped together random internships, have a decent GPA (3.7-3.8) and there’s really nothing special about my profile (not an athlete, not a member of MENSA and didn’t have perfect high school test scores. Haven’t started a non-profit or anything either). I have NO family connections to the industry whatsoever; if you asked anyone in my family what investment banking was they’d tell you that you invest in the stock market for a living.

Been in the process with 13 places so far, nearly everything in both sell- and buy-side; sell-side included top EBs and a couple BBs. Buy-side included top shops in everything except PE, but I never networked with anyone in PE. Had 4 superdays so far, another this week, in the process with 3+ more places and waiting for others to kick off. It’s been the last 5 places I’ve interviewed with that I’ve landed superdays - I honestly just didn’t put in enough work for the interviews I had lined up before.

These weren’t through OCR - OCR got my foot in the door at 1 or 2 places, but otherwise it’s been through networking and being personable. If you transfer from a place like UChi to go to a place like Wharton because you think you need it to land in high finance then you’re wasting your time & money. It’s easy to get good grades your first year and transfer, it’s not easy to work 100 hours a week. If you’re switching your university just to have a junior year internship handed to you then I guarantee you’ll either not land it or you’ll get phased out halfway through your first year in banking.

Just grind dude.

but why is this even a discussion? transfer rates to those schools are nowhere near freshman admit rates, and of the ones that do get accepted, they are generally veterans or olympians or something of the sort. It's literally like 1-2 people with traditional backgrounds that get accepted, and that's a high estimate. you're just wasting people's time that reply to this post, including me.

Harvard takes 12 transfers a year. With an applicant pool for ~1600 it's sub 1% but I think it's overhyped on difficulty because most are not that qualified. Penn and Columbia are about 4-5%.

I go to Brown. if you can't land an IB job from here the issue is you, not the school. Every year plenty of kids land at the absolute best finance jobs out there (GS, Evercore, Centerview, MS, Point72, Millennium, etc), so its clearly possible.

If you go here, you can easily work reasonably hard (without being a complete recluse and still having fun) and end up with a 3.9+ GPA. There are alums at every major shop that are typically happy to speak to a current student. There is OCR at pretty much any firm you'd want to look at.

I have friends at HYP schools and honestly, my recruiting experience was not significantly different from any of them. Aside from maybe 1-2 buyside opportunities that are only open to HYPS kids, the exact same doors are open. As long as you have a decent GPA and a halfway decent resume, you will get ample interviews from Brown, and it's on you to convert those interviews into jobs, but I really don't think there is any sizable recruiting different from Brown vs Harvard.

wdym? like the transfers who transferred in 2019, so c/o 2022? or those who graduated in 2019 already?

Spend your time getting involved in clubs and hold leadership positions by your sophomore year. You can definitely network after your first year, coffee chats are out but phone calls are the main route anyway.

The schools you mentioned have fewer students interested in finance (not for lack of talent, just different student bodies) than Wharton or Harvard, and less competition. It may be easier to recruit at your current school - every bank will show up for OCR and only a handful of students are interested... HYPW there are tons of people recruiting

Final thought is that prestige only goes so far. if you are at a low target, 3.7+ GPA, and have networked a bit, you have a good shot anywhere. There's diminishing returns on school prestige and even GPA at some point


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