Best non-MBA masters degrees for career-changers/starters...with the end goal being PE

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I started another thread on this board three or four days ago...and it essentially turned into a discussion about the best non-mba business-relevant masters programs...and i wanted to get as many opinions as possible on the subject, so i thought i'd post the question as a seperate thread...

here's (the shortened version of) my story:

i am 23. i just graduated from a small non-target (albeit, prestigious) liberal arts school in the midwest. i majored in history. i had a 3.3 gpa. i played varsity football. most of my work experience to date consists of tutoring at public schools. i got into a lot of great schools out of high school (northwestern, michigan, etc.). i chose the school i chose because i wanted personal attention from professors. i was raised by simple blue-collar parents in a small midwestern town, so i didn't know much about finance (i didn't even know what private equity was until my fourth year of school!).

i chose to major in history because i wanted to be a high school teacher/football coach. but, after a while, i started looking into educational administration...which led to me looking into management consulting firms that hired educational administrators...which led me into the broader world of finance professions. it was too late for me to switch majors once i realized that i wanted to go into finance/private equity. so now, i am reaching out to alumnis in private equity firms, investment banks, and private equity firms to get some intial experience...and...i am looking for non-mba masters programs that might help me land a relevant job offer from an investment bank, management consulting firm, or private equity firm.

my end goal is to end up as a partner at a private equity firm (and then to maybe be a b-school professor). i'm well aware that i am way behind the curve in accomplishing such a goal...but...i just turned 23, so i don't think that all hope is quite lost yet. i think that if i get into the right masters program and do well there, i can get a starting position at a respected investment bank or management consulting firm (or if i am really lucky, at a private equity firm). then, if i do well there, after 3-5 years i can go and get my mba from a top school and start searching for partner track positions at a respected private equity firm.

...i'm looking for a program that will both give me the skills required for a starting position at an investment bank, management consulting firm, or private equity firm...and...give me a strong network of alumnis in the high-end finance world, particularly in private equity. the most promising programs that have been suggested to me thus far are...1a) Duke's masters in management science program...and...1b) Virginia's masters in commerce program.

i'd really, really appreciate any additional suggestions, or comments on the programs that i have already recieved word on. thank you very much in advance!

sincerely,

blue

Comments (52)

 
Aug 11, 2010 - 3:33am

Go with the UVA program. Maybe Duke. Both would be great for you since you do not have a finance background and need a solid east coast school to redirect your resume. With your liberal arts background you really do not have the necessary math classes for a Princeton or MIT program.

I think UVA would be your best shot. Just make sure you get an internship and you should be fine.

 
Aug 11, 2010 - 3:48am

Oh no. Another young mind giving up lifelong dreams in pursuit of the ever elusive riches of high-finance.

Since your undergrad was not business/econ related, I think your best bet is to go and pick up some hard skills - a masters in finance or accounting. This board gets overrun with notions of prestige over practicality, hence people recommended Duke and Virginia, and both are great schools for sure, but none of these programs are specialized. If you're going to spend $60K to go to school, you should be focused on getting the most bang for your buck, and pick up some hard skills that'll make it easier for you to land an IB gig.

Since you're interested in PE, I suggest you look into masters in accounting programs. It is unlikely that you'll land a job in IB directly out of these programs (I've heard that UT Austin/UMich places a few in IB each year, verify this). However, investment banking work is more closely tied to accounting, and having a good accounting background can be very helpful for a PE career. Also look at some of the "prestigious" finance programs like Vanderbilt, and see where they place students (I think it's mostly regional).

Keep in mind that breaking into investment banking isn't easy and you'll have to put in a lot of effort.

 
Aug 11, 2010 - 4:51pm

"It is unlikely that you'll land a job in IB directly out of these programs"

I don't like the sound of that. It sounds like the masters in accounting might be the best way to aqcuire the skills i'd need to succeed in PE...but...i want to be able to get hired at an IB/MC/PE after getting the degree...so, maybe it's not the best choice. it sounds like the options at virginia and duke might give me a somewhat high chance of landing a job at an IB.

the masters in finance programs sound nice...but aren't those sort of regarded to as "alternative mba degrees." i.e., programs (the respected ones at least) that are very hard to get into, and that usually lead to partner track positions on their own merit?i'm really looking for something that will help me get that first job at an IB/MC/PE firm, so that i can get the kind of pre-mba work experience that will get me into a top MBA program.

 
Aug 11, 2010 - 5:17pm

Like we said in your other thread, the MMS and the M.S. Comm will be your very best bet for IB/MC/F500 (the places you need to be for eventual PE candidacy). From your current position, there is no degree you can obtain to break directly into PE until you obtain an MBA.

Masters in Finance programs are largely for Asset/Portfolio Management positions. The % going to IB from those programs is very small; and to PE, well pretty much non-existent.

This topic has been discussed before. Listen to Anthony above (he recommends UVA). Right now, you should be networking with alumni from your school and PE/IB firms close to you in Michigan for a job/internship, while you apply for UVA and Duke.

 
Aug 11, 2010 - 5:25pm

//www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/texas-master-of-accounting-for-investmen…

There have been other threads, including one from a few weeks ago, on the UT program. I don't know much about it, but according to the thread I posted above, BB's will recruit there for IB.

http://new.mccombs.utexas.edu/MPA/Traditional-MPA/Admissions/MPA-Admiss…-FAQs.aspx

According to FAQ, you don't need to have prior accounting experience to get in either.

The only downside might be that you might be stuck in Houston/Dallas for IB & PE.

looking for that pick-me-up to power through an all-nighter?
 
Aug 11, 2010 - 6:02pm

UTA has plenty of Houston based BB's coming on campus. Problem is that you should really have some accounting knowledge. You don't NEED it, but you will be in the minority. Only 9% of people in the program come from a liberal arts background. Placement stats show only 5% going into IB.

UMich requires a lot of accounting classes before you can get into the program.

UVA has a good program ideally suited for someone with a liberal arts backgrounds. You can do an MSF, but it will be a steep learning curve.

MSF places in everything. MFE places more into quant roles.

UVA and Duke have a great reputation, problem is will you be allowed to get OCR? I know from experience that an MSF is still widely misunderstood. I can't imagine telling someone you have an MMS. I am still waiting to see official placement stats.

 
Aug 12, 2010 - 6:15pm

You're doing the right thing in reaching to your fellow Kalamazoo College alumni. Just make sure that as you do, you're not framing your discussions as "I'm looking for a job." The most effective way to network with people is to have a discussion asking about their experience and their perspective on the career they've chosen.

 
Aug 12, 2010 - 11:23pm

If I was you I would try and use my personal connections to get a gig at a boutique or middle market ibank, a national or superregional commercial bank, a consulting/accounting firm in a valuation or transaction advisory role, or a true management consulting firm. Some sort of analyst role at a small money management firm might also work. I would then do that, and do it well, for 3-5 years, nail the gmat and acquire some extracurricular leadership experience and apply to a decent bschool and go get my MBA. I might also sit for the CFA in the mean time just to bolster my analytical skills, not because it's a prereg for PE.

I would not advise getting a graduate degree in anything but business, with the exception of a MBA/JD, if you want to go into PE.

I guess you could go get a masters in accounting, work in accounting for a few years, then go back and get your MBA, then do ibanking then make the leap to PE. Just note that going from masters in accounting or even MSF to ibanking will be very difficult let alone PE.

 
Aug 13, 2010 - 5:10am

illcaprice

i couldn't agree with you more on the first part - getting a gig at one of the places you mentioned is definitely going to be a step along the way - - - a 'boutique or middle market ibank, national or superregional cmmercial bank, a consulting/accounting firm in a valuation or transaction advisory role, or a true management consulting firm...or...some sort of analyst role in a small money management firm, doing that for 3-5 yrs, gmat, cfa, mba - - -but i'm a little puzzled about the second part...

it sounds like you are saying that going out and getting a non-business mba, in order to get a better first 'gig', like a masters in commerce from UVA, or a masters in management science from Duke, or a masters in accounting/finance like you mentioned, is going to hurt my long term PE goals. Please explain.

 
Aug 14, 2010 - 12:02am

blueadams:
illcaprice

i couldn't agree with you more on the first part - getting a gig at one of the places you mentioned is definitely going to be a step along the way - - - a 'boutique or middle market ibank, national or superregional cmmercial bank, a consulting/accounting firm in a valuation or transaction advisory role, or a true management consulting firm...or...some sort of analyst role in a small money management firm, doing that for 3-5 yrs, gmat, cfa, mba - - -but i'm a little puzzled about the second part...

it sounds like you are saying that going out and getting a non-business mba, in order to get a better first 'gig', like a masters in commerce from UVA, or a masters in management science from Duke, or a masters in accounting/finance like you mentioned, is going to hurt my long term PE goals. Please explain.

He said non business because they are typically stepping stools to PhDs, which are practically useless in PE.

If you don't want to go to a Masters program then don't. A dozen people have posted possible solutions to you two very similar posts and nearly every single answer was the same...contact alums, focus on small shops, if nothing comes up go to UVA or Duke.

The bottom line is you have to do something. The only thing worse than not getting experience in the field you want is not getting any experience at all. You don't have many options because of the situation you put yourself in. You have to take it for what it is and move forward. If your school is as great as you claim and as tight nit as you say then you should have no problem getting an internship...its just a matter of what industry it is in.

Regards

"The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant, it's just that they know so much that isn't so." - Ronald Reagan
 
Aug 15, 2010 - 3:19pm

blueadams:
illcaprice

i couldn't agree with you more on the first part - getting a gig at one of the places you mentioned is definitely going to be a step along the way - - - a 'boutique or middle market ibank, national or superregional cmmercial bank, a consulting/accounting firm in a valuation or transaction advisory role, or a true management consulting firm...or...some sort of analyst role in a small money management firm, doing that for 3-5 yrs, gmat, cfa, mba - - -but i'm a little puzzled about the second part...

it sounds like you are saying that going out and getting a non-business mba, in order to get a better first 'gig', like a masters in commerce from UVA, or a masters in management science from Duke, or a masters in accounting/finance like you mentioned, is going to hurt my long term PE goals. Please explain.

Wasn't saying it would hurt, I'm just saying that I don't think it will help. You do not need another degree to acquire relevant experience, and "experience" is the key to increasing your chances of getting a PE gig.

 
Aug 13, 2010 - 3:47pm

awp...it sounds like you might be the 'moron' that picked the wrong field.

the whole point of this thread is NOT becoming a bitter, unrespected d-bag that has to post childish insults on message boards to feel better about himself.

:)

 
Aug 14, 2010 - 10:32pm

I would recommend the UT MPA (Master Professional Accounting) program- I would have attended that program had I not been given a full scholarship to a target European MSc Finance program. If I hadn't gotten in to that program, I would have happily and joyfully gone to Texas.

The reason is that it's the best MPA program in the USA, and everyone knows about it (even in Europe)- you are virtually guaranteed a job with the Big 4, and a fair amount of motivated people get energy IB or MBB (McKinsey, Bain, BCG) consulting jobs in Houston. Anthony quoted the 5% IB placement figure above, which is accurate, but you need to keep in mind that 80% of the kids attending the MPA program want to be accountants, not bankers.

even if you can't land an IB job right away, you WILL find a Big 4 job (probably several), perhaps in something like advisory, which will enable you to lateral over to an IB after several years or an MBA. (or you could go work in industry as a company controller/CFO or work your up to partner at the Big 4- these are all attractive options)

 
Aug 14, 2010 - 11:28pm

blueadams:
if the texas accounting program is that prestigious...its probably pretty hard to get into as well, right? I'm a history major with a 3.3 gpa lol

haha no idea... but after suggesting it for you, im now thinking about doing it myself haha

looking for that pick-me-up to power through an all-nighter?
 
Aug 15, 2010 - 6:01pm

right...but...what gets me the better 'experience

1yr masters + 2 yrs working at a great bank

or

2yrs working at a crappy bank, 1 yr working at a great bank

?

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 1:10am

A random masters is not going to help you get a job at a great bank, or really any bank. It might, emphasis on might, help you get a job that could eventually be parlayed into working for a bank and it definitely won't be a great bank at that. The point doesn't change, hit the street and go find a gig is the best advice I have.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 1:32pm

illcaprice:
A random masters is not going to help you get a job at a great bank, or really any bank. It might, emphasis on might, help you get a job that could eventually be parlayed into working for a bank and it definitely won't be a great bank at that. The point doesn't change, hit the street and go find a gig is the best advice I have.

I disagree, a masters from a top accounting or finance program will greatly improve his chances.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 5:07pm

I've just re-reviewed all the comments above, and here's the general consensus that I'm getting:

1) Masters in Commerce, Virginia: It's great for a liberal arts background (aka little to no finance, math). The potential problems are that I won't be acquiring the hard skills that I would be in a Masters in Accounting or Finance program...and...that I might not be allowed to get off-campus recruiting. But, it sounds like it places great into IB, and that it'd introduce me to a great network on Wall Street, particularly in PE, I think this is the top choice.

2) Masters in Management Science, Duke: It's great for a liberal arts background (aka little to no finance, math). The potential problems are that I won't be acquiring the hard skills that I would be in a Masters in Accounting or Finance program...that I might not be allowed to get off-campus recruiting...and...that Anthony "couldn't imagine telling someone he had an MMS" (lol). It sounds like it places great into IB, and that it'd introduce me to a great network on Wall Street, particularly in PE. But, mostly because of Anthony's concerns, I think I'll rate it second.

3) Masters in Accounting, Texas, Michigan: It sounds like this program would be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. But, it sounds like it might be hard to get into IB with the degree, and even harder to get into PE with the degree...or at least, the road would be longer than it would be at the above options. It also sounds like it's quite hard to get into these programs at Texas and Michigan without having taken accounting courses as an undergraduate.

4) Masters of Science in Finance, MIT, Princeton, Vanderbilt? It sounds like this program would also be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. Anthony seems to think it places into everything, and that the degree is "still widely misunderstood," but others seem to think it places only into asset/portfolio management positions, and that the percentage going into IB is small, and the percentage going into PE is even smaller. Regardless, it sounds like such a program would be a steep learning curve for me, and that I wouldn't have the math/finance background to get into the top programs anyways. I'm ranking this as about on par with the masters in accounting programs.

5) Masters in Financial Engineering, MIT, Princeton, Vanderbilt? It sounds like this program would also be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. These degrees seem to have a lot of the same pros and cons as the masters of science in finance degrees, but place into quant roles to an even higher degree...which...sadly, will never be a strength of mine. I'm listing it as a the last option.

Based on your comments above, I think that my best course of action is to A) use my connections to get an internship or starting position at whatever IB I can for the rest of the year, and B) to start making preparations to enroll in Virginia's masters in commerce program (getting relevant work experience like I said, studying for the GMAT, extracurriculars, etc.)

Thank you very much to all of you. Your wisdom is greatly appreciated.

Best,

Blue

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 6:21pm

blueadams:
I've just re-reviewed all the comments above, and here's the general consensus that I'm getting:

1) Masters in Commerce, Virginia: It's great for a liberal arts background (aka little to no finance, math). The potential problems are that I won't be acquiring the hard skills that I would be in a Masters in Accounting or Finance program...and...that I might not be allowed to get off-campus recruiting. But, it sounds like it places great into IB, and that it'd introduce me to a great network on Wall Street, particularly in PE, I think this is the top choice.

2) Masters in Management Science, Duke: It's great for a liberal arts background (aka little to no finance, math). The potential problems are that I won't be acquiring the hard skills that I would be in a Masters in Accounting or Finance program...that I might not be allowed to get off-campus recruiting...and...that Anthony "couldn't imagine telling someone he had an MMS" (lol). It sounds like it places great into IB, and that it'd introduce me to a great network on Wall Street, particularly in PE. But, mostly because of Anthony's concerns, I think I'll rate it second.

3) Masters in Accounting, Texas, Michigan: It sounds like this program would be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. But, it sounds like it might be hard to get into IB with the degree, and even harder to get into PE with the degree...or at least, the road would be longer than it would be at the above options. It also sounds like it's quite hard to get into these programs at Texas and Michigan without having taken accounting courses as an undergraduate.

4) Masters of Science in Finance, MIT, Princeton, Vanderbilt? It sounds like this program would also be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. Anthony seems to think it places into everything, and that the degree is "still widely misunderstood," but others seem to think it places only into asset/portfolio management positions, and that the percentage going into IB is small, and the percentage going into PE is even smaller. Regardless, it sounds like such a program would be a steep learning curve for me, and that I wouldn't have the math/finance background to get into the top programs anyways. I'm ranking this as about on par with the masters in accounting programs.

5) Masters in Financial Engineering, MIT, Princeton, Vanderbilt? It sounds like this program would also be great for picking up hard skills that would be useful in IB and PE. These degrees seem to have a lot of the same pros and cons as the masters of science in finance degrees, but place into quant roles to an even higher degree...which...sadly, will never be a strength of mine. I'm listing it as a the last option.

Based on your comments above, I think that my best course of action is to A) use my connections to get an internship or starting position at whatever IB I can for the rest of the year, and B) to start making preparations to enroll in Virginia's masters in commerce program (getting relevant work experience like I said, studying for the GMAT, extracurriculars, etc.)

Thank you very much to all of you. Your wisdom is greatly appreciated.

Best,

Blue

You obviously didnt read my post. You are not eligible for your "top choice". Also, the assistant director of graduate recruiting at Virginia's Mcintire school told me that Ibanking is a "long shot" from the program. Dont go with your sights set on high finance, she basically told me outright this almost certainly wouldnt happen. Everyone on this board jacks it off, but honestly, after talking with them at lengths, i am not really sure why. Another thing worth mentioning is that its harder to get into the financial services track than the marketing/management track. If you dont have a record of at least a few classes of strong analytical work, or you dont knock the quant parts of the GRE/GMAT out of the park (her number for "out of the park" was 80th percentile), they may not even take you.

Finally, none of the schools you listed under "financial engineering" even have FE programs. Those are all Masters in Finance programs.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 6:46pm

startop -

1) i was talking about enrolling in the program next fall.

2) so...what does the masters in commerce program place into...management/marketing?

3) i was just sort of listing all the MFEs and MSFs together. apologies.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 8:37pm

You just graduated, correct? If so, you cannot enroll into the program next fall. You have to enroll within one calendar year from the time you graduate. So if you graduated this past Summer, you would have to enroll this fall (meaning you already applied, were accepted, told them you were going to attend, paid a seat deposit, etc). Same story if you graduated this past Spring. Next fall would be more than 1 year after you graduated, meaning you cannot enroll.

You CAN get a finance job from the program, but what she said is

A. People get Ibanking, but it is a LONG shot, especially with someone with a background in history. The people that tend to get these jobs are Economics/Engineering types, and they are a very low percentage.

B. The types of job you WILL get are something in finance, but not as "prestigious" according to WSO standards. Think corporate finance at a construction firm in Virginia. If you are super lucky and network well, maybe a job at a mutual fund.

There are two "tracks" one is marketing/management, which gets marketing firms, consulting firms, supply-line management jobs, etc. And the other is the financial services track, which places into financial roles. Consulting firms recruit from both tracks.

MSF and MSE programs are a lot different from each other. Your background has not prepared you for a MFE degree (unless you have been taking stats, calc, and computing classes at night or something, which may actually be a good idea if you want to apply to one of these programs in a year or 2). Even the better MSF programs (not just MIT/Princeton, but also Vandy, and Olin if you were thinking of doing the WUSTL) require calculus. I dont know the specifics of your educational background, but most history majors I know didnt have to take calc, or even the prerequs for it.

The ones that do place well into IB are numerous, but difficult to get into. ibanks wouldnt recruit their if they admitted people who are unqualified or if the classes werent rigorous. Olin can, Princeton will, MIT will, Oxbridge and LSE will if you want to cross the pond. Others are more of a long-shot, like Tulane, Vandy, etc. Anthony D has a pretty good blog about this, even though I disagree with some of his advice.

Also, Duke's MMS program does NOT have the "within 1 year of graduation" requirement that UVA does, however, it does require calculus. Hope this helps. If you have any more questions, i'll do my best to answer them.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 8:43pm

Oh, and here is a tip. MBA programs will be more forgiving about your history background, and may even dig it. If you can get into ANY finance job, even corporate finance or accounting or something, then you may have a shot at i-banks out of an MBA program. I know you said "non-MBA", but honestly man, if your new goal is seriously private equity, then put in the work for it. Dont settle for second best because you dont want to wait until you are 30 to have the job you want. I think you'll regret it.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 8:46pm

OP

I going to say it again- If you can score well on the GMAT, strongly consider UT MPA- it has the better career prospects than both Duke and UVA's programs, and unlike Princeton and those quant ones, doesn't require much prerequisite math.

Seeing that you don't have any prior accounting coursework, I'd like you to also consider the UNC Masters of Accounting program- it requires NO prior accounting coursework whatsoever. Now, the IB career prospects aren't as great as UT, but the Big 4 accounting prospects are stellar.

since it seems that you aren't going to be able to get into to any of the programs that are great for IB recruiting (Princeton, Oxford etc), you should strongly consider an MAcc/MPA, working for a few years, and lateraling over/MBA.

 
Aug 16, 2010 - 11:40pm

startop - thank you very much for your response, it was very helpful.

1) thats too bad about uva, it sounded nice. oh well, on to the others...

2) i don't have the mathematics background for a MFE or MSF, but i don't have a problem going out and getting it.

3) i'm actually not all that concerned about my chances of getting into a decent b-school, and then into IB. i got in touch with a bschool prof from NYU (who said he used to teach at an Ivy) not too long ago, and he liked my chances. i was afraid that east coast bschool profs werent even going to know how to find my school on the map, but he was very well aware of it, really loved it, and the kind of graduates it produced...and he said he wasn't at all alone in that regard. he also said that my history major and psychology thesis only made me more attractive, as so many of their applicants are boring econ/engineering majors. he said that bschool profs never let their kids major in econ bc they take the exact same courses again as mbas. he also said that my 3.3 gpa wasn't going to be a killer. just said that i needed to get the best job i could, work hard, show some leadership skills, get some great reccomondations, and study for my gmat (i got like a 30 on the act, 30 on math, if that means anything?).

my concern is with getting into PE instad of IB after getting my MBA. it sounds like the best way to do that is to get your pre-mba experience in an IB. but i'm going to have trouble getting hired at an IB as things stand, hence, my efforts to get a non-mba masters.

affirmative action -

texas sounds good. i could take all the pre-reqs over this next year. my concern is, however, that i'll probably end up in the same starting place post-mba...an IB...as i would without getting a masters degree at all and just taking the best corporate development job that i can get.

 
Aug 17, 2010 - 5:46pm

here's another question about a degree no one else has mentioned - marketing.

say i get a masters degree in marketing...work for a top management consulting firm for 3-5 yrs...do well on my gmat...get into a top bschool...and graduate. how are my pe options looking then? -----> good mba + 3-5 yrs management consulting exp. i think that would obviously be enough for me to get a job in ibanking right out of mba, but i don't know about pe.

i ask about marketing because it appeals to an obvious strength of mine - psychology. one, it was by far my favorite subject as an undergrad. two, i took about 6 or so psychology courses, and the lowest grade i got was an A. three, i did my senior thesis in psychology, and it was published.

thoughts?

 
Aug 17, 2010 - 8:23pm

Marketing in a consulting firm is not like marketing for P&G or CocaCola. When was the last time you saw an ad for McKinsey? Lot of the selling is relationship/reputation based, often directly related to the partner.

Array
 
Aug 18, 2010 - 12:10am

Dude, in all seriousness, unless the market changes significantly in the next few years while you are doing one of the 330508953095 options you keep asking about, your shot at getting into PE are slim, at best.

You should apply to any Masters programs that have decent brand name, spend a year there doing whatever and try and apply for analyst positions at banks. Tell the recruiters you can from a small school with no connections so you did what you had to do. You will be two years behind the curve. The other option is to work for a couple years and get into the best Bschool you can and apply for associate positions.

I think you need to take some time to figure out what you want to do. I know its not easy to accept and you get to a point where you panic because you feel like you are missing out on all the opportunities...but the only thing you are doing right now is spinning your wheels. I know because I was in a similar position a year ago.

Whats going on with your alumni contacts?

Regards

"The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant, it's just that they know so much that isn't so." - Ronald Reagan
 
Aug 18, 2010 - 1:03am

This whole "I wanna do PE without any real experience" shit is killing me.

You have two options.

1) Find a really small PE shop and intern for free. Really impress them and maybe get a job

or

2) Get a job in IB, put in some experience like everyone else and then go the PE route.

You went to a tiny school with a weak alumni base. You either need to work on networking and interning or go to another school with a better alumni base.

Decide what you want to do and then get back to us. Until then all your plans and what ifs are just pipe dreams.

 
Aug 18, 2010 - 4:36pm

anthony/bravo - thats pretty much the exact same conclusion ive come to...just need to do whatever i need to do to get a job at an ibank --- masters or connection --- then get into the best b school possible, and lateral to pe at some point along the way if i can. *i'm just continuing to ask questions because there is still plenty i'd like to know. but if this is the route i do indeed choose to go with, i'll know how. but i want to take a little more time to decide...so if you see me in a forum without an ibanking job in a month or two, please, don't blow up on me.

and awp - you're really making yourself look stupid. it looks likes someones feelings are hurt because i called him out and embarrased him the other day. go and take a look at mckinsey's home page. read about their marketing sector. all they hire is marketing experts. so a masters in marketing would not be a 'random' masters degree in regards to getting hired to a similar management consulting firm.

 
Aug 18, 2010 - 4:41pm

...also...awp...idk much about private equity or finance...but i do know quite a bit about psychology...and i would like to friendly suggest that you consider making an appointment to speak to someone to address this strange aggression that you have towards strangers on the internet. when someone tells someone to "JUMP," it's usually an indicator that they themselves are contemplating such action. and i'm not just being a dick here, i'm being serious. go see someone. its nots weird. lots of people need help. lots of people get it.

 
Aug 18, 2010 - 4:43pm

oh and anthony...bc i seem to be getting so many mixed reviews on masters degrees that place into ibanking here...i think that i am just going to talk to one of my old professors from school (he got his mba at an ivy league school and chairs our department)...and see what he thinks. would you like me to let you know when i do find out?

 
Aug 18, 2010 - 9:43pm

Im going to throw this out there:

you are concerned that the UT MPA will leave you in the same position (IB associate) post-MBA as getting a corporate development job now.

my questions are:

1)what makes you think you can get a corporate development job right now? you have already graduated college, you aren't just going to find something that easily
2)while it is possible that you wouldn't be able to get an IB gig after the UT MPA, it is also quite possible, if you apply yourself, that you would, with a BB- and after 2 years of working in IB, you could switch over to PE- which is I believe is your ultimate goal. If you are good enough, you can even forgo getting an MBA.

fyi, you aren't gonna get a PE job post MBA if you didn't have pre-MBA IB experience- you'll likely be "stuck" in IB (not that it's a bad career at all)

 
Aug 18, 2010 - 9:50pm

@Blueadams - Yeah, let me know what he says. Always looking to get more opinions on the degree. Helps me shape my advice.

 
Aug 19, 2010 - 2:22am

Blue,

I know I've made this point before but I'm going to repeat it. I think the probability of landing a decent gig at a solid ibank out of any MPA program is very low. The gigs that are offered will most likely be some middle or back office role that will do more harm than good to your resume if PE is your end goal. I've never encountered anyone in an M&A or leveraged finance role with a pure MPA background. I'm sure you can do it, but if you do, it will be because of your own determination and hustle, and you don't need to write another tuition check for that.

 
Aug 19, 2010 - 1:15pm

illcaprice:
Blue,

I know I've made this point before but I'm going to repeat it. I think the probability of landing a decent gig at a solid ibank out of any MPA program is very low. The gigs that are offered will most likely be some middle or back office role that will do more harm than good to your resume if PE is your end goal. I've never encountered anyone in an M&A or leveraged finance role with a pure MPA background. I'm sure you can do it, but if you do, it will be because of your own determination and hustle, and you don't need to write another tuition check for that.

Well I'll remake and repeat my own point- which is that the Texas MPA program regularly places its students in front office roles in Houston bulge brackets, elite boutiques, and MBB consulting firms.

I wouldn't suggest this if it wasn't fact.

 
Aug 19, 2010 - 2:53am

positive and negative additions to the mpa degree. i'm going to take a harder look at it, and then i'll run it over with my professor when i speak to him.

i think i'm basically just going to tell him...my long term goal is pe...it seems like the first step i need to take to get there is pre-mba ibanking...so what kind of graduate program do you think would give me the best shot to get into ib - - - mpa, msf, mfe, mms @ duke...etc.

he's a pretty bright guy. i'm hoping that he'll have some good and confident advice to clear all this up.

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