Are these good steps to take towards a M&A analyst role

Gold_man_zak's picture
Rank: Baboon | banana points 120

I am an economics undergraduate at a not so prestigous university in the UK. I just finished first year and managed to get a grade of 2.1..in US GPA this would be 3.5 and I know that this isn't great but hopefully I will get the grade I want and need next year. Although this does not count towards my overall degree result, it is still disappointing. I also didn't manage to gain a summer internship this year. Anyway, so instead this summer, I managed to get a job as a teaching assistant for 7 weeks at a secondary school, but will find the time to master excel programming, vba etc ive got the software and books to teach myself, ive spent a year learning chinese mandarin and german and will practice this even more before my next years lessons at university, i have signed on to SEO London who help provide summer internships, applications for next year summer internships open at the end of july of which im preparing my resume etc for, next year at university i dont plan to work in a paid job but I will be running a multicultural cooking club with another friend (this is in process), this should hopefully show some leadership skills,..and i know that accounting and finance is a vital thing to know about, i want to take a week's course on it which i will PS225 for, although i did a module on it in university (it was the module i struggled with the most :/ didnt really put the effort needed)..but i want to thoroughly understand the fundamentals of financial accounting....

This is what the course offers:

The learning outcome for this course is to help you how to read and interpret accounts in 5 key lessons covering: Lesson One: Fixed and current assets, debtors and creditors, the accounting equation. capital and reserves, the purpose and layout of a balance sheet Lesson Two: The purpose of a profit and loss account, the importance of stock-taking, depreciation, capital and revenue expenditure. Lesson Three: Accruals, provisions, prepayments, the role of capital and reserves. Lesson Four: The importance of the profit and loss account, calculating profit at various levels. Lesson Five: The meaning of profit margins, making comparisons on financial statements, analysing a profit and loss account. At the end of the course, you'll take an exam leading to a valued Pitman Training certificate and this course also covers part of the syllabus for the ITEC Business Competence Level 3 unit.

what are your opinions? im a little bit concerned that it might not cover the basic accounting skills needed especially in M&A roles which is my MAIN interest in IB, and also the certificate given at the end of the course is only one of attendance, not one on some kind of grade system...

Hopefully by next year summer, I would have gained a summer internship in finance (somewhere in the IB division or maybe some private wealth management or even accounting work experience) as I keep on with my search for one till about february when applications for such opportunities usually close. I will probably also pay for some course on financial modelling next year or after I have graduated from university.

I need your insights, what am I failing to see? Any other suggestions, particularly on networking (its seeming almost impossible to meet people working in IB industry)

Thanks so much for your help
Zak

Comments (12)

Jul 12, 2012

This post is too long, give me a few sentence summary and I will respond.

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Jul 12, 2012
Cane0180:

This post is too long, give me a few sentence summary and I will respond.

Basically, I finished my first year at university with a GPA of 3.5 :/ in economics at a non-target school :/. I failed to get a summer internship this summer so I acquired a teaching assistant job for seven weeks and plan to take a week's accounting and finance course, master microsoft excel using a book and software i bought, practise chinese mandarin which i began learning last year, Next year during my second year at university, hopefully get a better grade with hardwork etc, and also picking up german, co-managing a multicultural cooking club to show leadership skills and team working skills and quit paid work to concentrate on studies...I'll also start searching and applying for summer internships at the end of july when such opportunities open for year 2013 up until late april when they end, I've registered with SEO London a reputable firm for providing summer internships .....this is very far ahead IMO, but maybe then after graduation I can then start thinking about taking a course or going for a camp to learn financial modelling and getting an MBA...??

Thanks

zAK

    • 1
Jul 12, 2012
Gold_man_zak:
Cane0180:

This post is too long, give me a few sentence summary and I will respond.

Basically, I finished my first year at university with a GPA of 3.5 :/ in economics at a non-target school :/. I failed to get a summer internship this summer so I acquired a teaching assistant job for seven weeks and plan to take a week's accounting and finance course, master microsoft excel using a book and software i bought, practise chinese mandarin which i began learning last year, Next year during my second year at university, hopefully get a better grade with hardwork etc, and also picking up german, co-managing a multicultural cooking club to show leadership skills and team working skills and quit paid work to concentrate on studies...I'll also start searching and applying for summer internships at the end of july when such opportunities open for year 2013 up until late april when they end, I've registered with SEO London a reputable firm for providing summer internships .....this is very far ahead IMO, but maybe then after graduation I can then start thinking about taking a course or going for a camp to learn financial modelling and getting an MBA...??

Thanks

It seems to me like you're trying to do way too much. You're trying to simultaneously pick up Mandarin and German, while self-studying excel. Chill out, get good grades, search posts on networking, explore all opportunities available to you. You don't need to learn how to build a financial model; focus on the theory behind financial modeling, not actually building a model.

Jul 12, 2012
Cane0180:
Gold_man_zak:
Cane0180:

This post is too long, give me a few sentence summary and I will respond.

Basically, I finished my first year at university with a GPA of 3.5 :/ in economics at a non-target school :/. I failed to get a summer internship this summer so I acquired a teaching assistant job for seven weeks and plan to take a week's accounting and finance course, master microsoft excel using a book and software i bought, practise chinese mandarin which i began learning last year, Next year during my second year at university, hopefully get a better grade with hardwork etc, and also picking up german, co-managing a multicultural cooking club to show leadership skills and team working skills and quit paid work to concentrate on studies...I'll also start searching and applying for summer internships at the end of july when such opportunities open for year 2013 up until late april when they end, I've registered with SEO London a reputable firm for providing summer internships .....this is very far ahead IMO, but maybe then after graduation I can then start thinking about taking a course or going for a camp to learn financial modelling and getting an MBA...??

Thanks

It seems to me like you're trying to do way too much. You're trying to simultaneously pick up Mandarin and German, while self-studying excel. Chill out, get good grades, search posts on networking, explore all opportunities available to you. You don't need to learn how to build a financial model; focus on the theory behind financial modeling, not actually building a model.

Thanks I will take your advice on focusing on the theory behind financial modelling rather than trying t build one..okay lets say I don't have a paid job and I work on getting good grades i.e. GPA of 3.8-4.0, stick with only Mandarin for the next few years, self-study excel, really search posts on networking and use advice given (because I am completely lost on how to do this), take a week's course in accounting and finance also carry on applying for summer internships and co-managing the multicultural cooking society at university and focus on these for the next two years before graduating...is my goal now sounding realistic or is it still overly ambitous? im thinking maybe i should leave out the course in accounting and finance? i didn't really understand the module properly during first year at university, that is the reason i feel that the course would be useful and something i could put on my resume

zAK

Jul 12, 2012

Getting laid will greatly increase your chances of landing a financial analyst position.

Calm. Down.

Jul 12, 2012

Financial analyst? LOL..

    • 1
Jul 12, 2012

Seriously, this is happening more and more. Nobody wants to read three irrelevant paragraphs to find the two relevant sentences.

Jul 12, 2012

First of all, why M&A?

Second, sounds like you've wasted your freshers year. You will regret that.

Relax and enjoy the easy girls while you're still young.

Jul 12, 2012
Boreed:

First of all, why M&A?

Second, sounds like you've wasted your freshers year. You will regret that.

Relax and enjoy the easy girls while you're still young.

lol did that too :)

zAK

Jul 12, 2012

Your writing is absolutely horrendous; instead of learning Mandarin maybe you should focus your efforts on being able to construct sentences. You are asking me hypothetical bullshit, which I already addressed in my above post. Use the search function.

Jul 12, 2012

Try organizing your thoughts and writing sentences that are concise and to the point. Bankers love that.

Jul 12, 2012

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zAK