Undergraduate Target Schools Tier List (2022 Updates)

Hi all, I was hoping to update this list for 2022, with PE/HF placements accounted for. I don't think it would be accurate to exclude this statistic if a school overperforms in PE/HF placements. Per capita and my general thoughts can be seen in these in 2022 rankings.

What do y'all think? Let me know and I will make the edits if they're generally agreed upon.

Tier S++ (Super Target)

Harvard / Yale / Princeton 

Wharton 

Stanford 

Tier S+ (Target)

UPenn (non Wharton) / Dartmouth / Columbia / Brown 

MIT

UChicago

Cornell / Cornell Dyson 

Duke 

Tier S (Target)

Georgetown McDonough 

NYU / NYU Stern

Notre Dame Mendoza 

Williams 

Amherst 

Caltech

UCB Haas 

UMich Ross

UVA McIntire 

UMich Ross

Tier A+ (Low Target to Top Semi-Target)

Northwestern

Vanderbilt

Rice

WashU Olin 

Middlebury 

USC Marshall 

Claremont Mckenna

Pomona

BC Carrol

Tufts

Bowdoin

Emory

JHU

Comments (86)

  • Prospect in PE - Growth
May 5, 2022 - 10:54pm

UVA up to S tier. know of and have seen plenty of kids get spots at UMM/MF 

May 6, 2022 - 12:10am
Isaiah_53_5 💎🙌💎🙌💎, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Thought same thing.

"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

  • 2
May 6, 2022 - 2:34am
Kenneth Griffin, what's your opinion? Comment below:

UVA has definitely surprised me a little. A decent amount of people at the firm I'm incoming at are from UVA, it was the only school outside the T10 that I saw any representation from whatsoever.

Controversial
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 5, 2022 - 11:12pm

Yale / Princeton / Stanford is S+. Harvard and Wharton are the only two that should be in S++ for undergrad.

May 5, 2022 - 11:38pm
Mb54321, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Alot of competition being such a big school, location in sf hurts, Stanford controls SF and ucb haas dosnt necessarily control SF or LA. Very cali based student population, just overrated in my opinion!

Most Helpful
May 5, 2022 - 11:55pm
Kenneth Griffin, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Extremely underrated actually. Sending 7 kids to P72 for 22 & 23, sending 5 to Citadel, 1 to DE, 1 to Sig, 10+ to Wear Coast PE, 3 or so to VC and 5+ to BBs and EBs. And thats is Berkeley Investment Group alone, that is not even including Haas or the multiple other investment and trading clubs. You forget that Cal has #3 business program, #1 comp sci, and #4 econ program in the nation. So id say we could probably put them above Notre Dame to start lol.

  • Investment Analyst in HF - EquityHedge
May 5, 2022 - 11:53pm

These tier lists are meaningless nowadays--the advantage at being at a target has never been so insignificant now. In fact, I would argue that recruiting for the BBs/EBs from Wharton as a nondiverse candidate would put you at a disadvantage than if you had recruited from targets like Notre Dame or Georgetown, as there are a set number of spots available for each school. Citi, for example, had 7 spots for IBD at Wharton. You could guess 4 went to diversity (60-70% of a class are diverse nowadays) and 1 was a nepotism hire. That leaves 350+ Wharton hardos gunning for 2 spots. Also, your personality shown through your networking and interviews matters so much more than what school you attend. Wharton kids aren't known for having pleasant personalities. I have two friends at Wharton who are still recruiting and are about to strike out. 

May 5, 2022 - 11:54pm
InfidelCashFlow, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Would probably merge S+ and S as someone else above mentioned or could argue places like Dyson, Georgetown, Stern, and maybe Duke could be moved up.  McIntire, Ross, and maybe Haas seem to be ahead of the other names in the other grouping.  

Array

Funniest
  • Investment Analyst in HF - EquityHedge
May 6, 2022 - 12:03am

School Tier lists are irrelevant. Being diverse at a nontarget >>> nondiverse at supertarget. The more meaningful list would be a diversity tier list: God tier: Black female, Black male, Hispanic female, Trans. Tier 1B: Hispanic male. Tier 2: Lesbian, gay, disabled, Asian/white female. Tier 3: Bisexual. Tier 4: Spanish dude pretending he's Mexican. Tier 5: Desperate straight guy with a noticeably fake gay accent, but interviewer doesn't want to make that call. Tier 40: White male. 60: Asian male (doesn't matter if Hmong or Pacific Islander, they're all the same right?). Tier 2000 "Fuck these guys in particular": First generation white/asian males who grew up facing adversity and have no connections in the industry.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 7, 2022 - 11:06pm

Tier Cheat Code: Black Female

Tier Ez Offer: Black Male, Hispanic Female

Tier +1000% Chance of Offer: Hispanic Male, Native American Female

Tier +750% Chance of Offer: Native American Male, White Female, Asian Female, Pacific Islander Female, Transgender

Tier Are You Even Diversity?: Pacific Islander Male, Gay

Tier "Diversity" (Hint: Not Really): Veteran, Disabled, Bisexual

Tier Fuck You: White Male/Asian Male

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 6, 2022 - 4:25pm

Why would they place it in Tier 2 hahaha

  • Associate 2 in PE - Other
May 6, 2022 - 7:45am

I feel like no one on WSO has worked a day on Wall Street. The entire street is filled with alumni from schools in the S and A+ tier, whereas you can go an entire career without meeting anyone from Stanford, MIT, non-Wharton Penn or Brown.

May 6, 2022 - 1:59pm
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I believe it is more about % chance of getting in rather than raw numbers. 

Array

  • 1
  • Anonymous Monkey's picture
  • Anonymous Monkey
  • Rank: Chimp
May 6, 2022 - 11:44am
Anonymous Monkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Ross should be much higher. I might be biased because I go to Ross, but I have two close friends at Vanderbilt, and our recruiting simply blows them out of the water (and we are ranked similarly on this list). Every single year we send multiple kids to every top bank on the street; we have outstanding placement at essentially all boutiques and most BBs. No reason Ross shouldn't be at the same level as McDonough or Mendoza.

  • Anonymous Monkey's picture
  • Anonymous Monkey
  • Rank: Chimp
May 6, 2022 - 11:46am
Anonymous Monkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

And the fact that Brown is higher than Ross is simply absurd LMAO. We party 3-4x a week and still get better job than all you fuckin nerds studying in the library all day.

  • Prospect in IB - Cov
May 6, 2022 - 12:43pm

Stanford does decent but the school is more focused in VC/Quant/Consulting/GE rather than IB/PE/HF. That said, a few do go PE straight out very few if any go HF out of undergrad unless they are doing Citadel Quant. Stanford GSB on the other hand is electric. Per capita, def not bad but idk if it's deserving of top tier.

  • Intern in AM - Equities
May 6, 2022 - 2:06pm

You have to be trolling, since you missed JHU and some prestigious LACs

May 6, 2022 - 2:13pm
Mb54321, what's your opinion? Comment below:

tufts>jhu , times have changed nobody goes to jhu to break into finance youd have a much better chance being in boston at tufts

  • Intern in AM - Equities
May 6, 2022 - 2:58pm

JHU > Tufts, times haven't changed as much as you say. You are still a freshman/sophomore in college so you cannot make a valid assessment of ranking schools.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
May 8, 2022 - 1:22am

JHU > Tufts all day and any day. First of all, JHU is LITERALLY twenty spots ahead of Tufts on the US World New Report, so our students are just naturally smarter. On a per capita basis, JHU places significantly better. Just look at the student investment team. Students, each year, place at pretty much every elite Bulge Bracket Firm with 1-2 heading to an elite boutique. With that being said, Tufts is great school. In many ways, Tufts resembles JHU. Both schools are not finance centric with only a handful of students geared towards breaking into IB. Tufts is practically JHU's polished but inferior younger brother and very well should be on the list, but clearly you are a Tufts alum, so don't disrespect your big bro - JHU. Listen dude, no disrespect. As a big reader of the content on this website, both schools get WAY more heat than they deserved and are shitted on by a bunch of bums at state schools, referencing that their school sends more kids to banking when their school graduates 10x students each year and has an undergrad B-school. 

May 7, 2022 - 4:03am
masoyoshi_son, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Stanford Placements SA 2023 so far: Centerview (1), Vista (1), Evercore (1), MS (2-3). Mostly diversity with most non-diversity still recruiting

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 7, 2022 - 4:03pm

If true, this is monkey shite.

  • Associate 1 in HF - EquityHedge
May 8, 2022 - 8:02am

Might be biased as a Bowdoin alum, but although we have fairly good placement on the sell-side, we actually seem to have stronger placement on the buy-side out of school. In my year I feel like we sent just as many kids to PE/IM (esp. Boston-based shops like Fidelity) as we did to NYC IB.

I think we deserve to at least be on this list if buy-side is included!

Below are from a 2014 report on school representation in the AM industry (PM/analyst respondents mostly)

image-20220508082017-1

image-20220508082402-2

May 8, 2022 - 8:46pm
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Yes, yes but apparently the funding drives for the Bowdoin graphic arts programs have been lacking in recent years . . . 

C'mon, son. 

*
  • Analyst 1 in HF - EquityHedge
May 8, 2022 - 10:42pm

You can blame WSO dark mode for how gray it might appear lol. Looked fine when I uploaded it and it still is fine if you switch to light mode or open image in a new tab

May 8, 2022 - 10:06pm
Mb54321, what's your opinion? Comment below:

UPDATED RANKINGS after looking at each comment, let me know how the rankings look now. Any changes?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 8, 2022 - 10:30pm

Any stats for Boston College placement?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 11, 2022 - 1:15am

Is there a difference in recruiting between S++ vs. S+ vs. even S? Or is it just a function of talent+effort at that point with the higher tiers having slightly higher talent on average.

  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
May 11, 2022 - 3:40am

Don't understand the separation within S++. All five of those will get you pretty much equal looks and prestige. If you're talking representation, I've actually seen far more Stanford and Wharton (obviously) than Princeton at least in IB/PE.More interestingly, would move UVA Ross and Stern higher maybe to S+ in that order though. They've done well lately. Also, this is not a 'target' in the sense that plenty of students there go into finance, but CalTech should absolutely be at least S+. Highly respected curriculum and very limited class size. Tbh if I see a CalTech resume come across, I'd probably view it as similar to S++ all things equal. People who are scientifically inclined would probably agree but lmk if I'm wrong.

  • 1
  • 4
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
May 11, 2022 - 3:59am

What about MIT/JHU? Guessing MIT would be better than caltech but not sure about JHU

  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
May 11, 2022 - 4:19am

Both great schools. MIT is already in S+. I'd say for finance it's correctly around Penn / Columbia, but it probably (like Caltech) is appreciated at the S++ tier. Actually a misconception to place MIT automatically above Caltech - if you talk to kids studying Physics, you'll find that a lot of them actually prefer CalTech, especially the more theoretical. Know some MIT (more HF space vs IB/PE). Know 0 Caltech in finance. Disclaimer I chose one of HYP over both. JHU a bit lower for undergrad purposes. Obviously, schools do NOT define a person's capabilities. They're an indicator sure, hence why this stuff exists, but not be-all end-all.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
May 16, 2022 - 10:15pm

Wake Forest. Not saying it's anywhere near the top of this list, probably right at the bottom, but it should be in the mix these days. A quick Linkedin search might surprise you on placements in NYC. For its tiny undergrad size, multiple kids going to some BBs and a lot of MM firms is impressive. 

May 17, 2022 - 9:19am
ASUgrad2017, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Not sure how ASU was left off this list

 

May 20, 2022 - 4:25pm
financeguy216, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jun 3, 2022 - 4:04pm

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Jun 17, 2022 - 2:46pm
curiousmonkey71, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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