Brown vs Dartmouth and Undergrad Education in General

Hey, I'm a high school senior (well for two more days anyway) who recently picked Brown over Dartmouth (after a period of tough decision). I know it's a bit early to be thinking of careers, and in no way am I completely set on ibanking (thinking of professorship in theoretical physics, maybe law, really not sure atm) but was wondering if in ibanking recruitment and job possibilities if Brown is any different than Dartmouth (for better or worse), and just how the school will suit me in the future if I decide on going down the banking route.

On a side note, I know engineering is a popular major for recruiters, but how would Physics or Astronomy compare? And would it matter if I took the AB route in Engineering rather than the SB (would allow me more freedom in the shaping of my education).

And lastly, as far as languages and usefulness - I am nowhere near adept at learning languages, and am nowhere near proficient in spanish after about 4 years of the language in hs, and am thinking of taking Russian or Portuguese in college (I like how they're more unique and especially Russian has the WOW factor (in my mind anyway). Would they be of less use than a more common language such as Chinese or Spanish?

Thanks all,
Brandon

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Comments (16)

Jun 5, 2007 - 12:18am

As far as banking/consulting goes, Dartmouth is fantastic. I am actually somewhat surprised at their ridiculously strong representation on the street, since they're so small. Great alum network.

Still, it's a little heavy on the drinking culture and none of the academic departments really stand out...

I would've picked Dartmouth (a college I was accepted to when I was applying) over Brown, but the difference in opportunities shouldn't be substantial.

Jun 5, 2007 - 1:15am

Do not attempt to learn a language as a resume booster. Not only will you have a harder time than those that really care, but it does not help you in the business world unless you are fluent and in a job position where it would be required. As someone who has pursued learning a language for fun, I can tell you it is an extremely long process that requires a lot more dedication than taking a few classes.

CompBanker

Jun 5, 2007 - 1:22am

though bankers are loathe to admit this fact: there is more to life than making money.

(not really, but why not make money AND have a fulfilling life?)

when the recession comes and goes and you're burnt out by 25, and when banking goes nowhere and you're spit out the bottom of the porn industry at 26, you'll always have x months in Florence, Paris, or wherever to remember.

Jun 5, 2007 - 1:22am

You already have a foundation in the language so I would stick with Spanish. I'd suggest studying abroad in a spanish speaking country (I'm sure Brown has a Madrid program) sometime during your time in school. I've had friends who did 4 unspectacular years of hs spanish (and like you didn't really learn much), but ended up becoming fluent after taking more classes in college and studying abroad in Spain.

Also, it Portugese will not be difficult to learn once you get spanish down.

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Jun 5, 2007 - 8:09am

Feedback I've always heard from recruiting teams is that Brown requires you to show a little more determination than simply dropping your resume. At Dartmouth, most consulting/banking firms have more established recruiting programs. However by no means are you at a disadvantage at all, you just need to make a little more effort at getting your resume in front of someone; after that you're on the same playing field.

May be different for other firms, but by and large that's what I've heard.

Jun 5, 2007 - 8:12am

i know ppl who majored in astronomy, physics, and astrophysics. all will serve you well, especially on the trading side, provided you have reasonable grades.

that being said, you dont see that many brown grads on the street. the kids are smart, but generally i think they're interested in other careers. Like being Peter Griffin's dog?

Jun 5, 2007 - 9:02am
Brown2011:
Hey, I'm a high school senior (well for two more days anyway) who recently picked Brown over Dartmouth (after a period of tough decision). I know it's a bit early to be thinking of careers, and in no way am I completely set on ibanking (thinking of professorship in theoretical physics, maybe law, really not sure atm) but was wondering if in ibanking recruitment and job possibilities if Brown is any different than Dartmouth (for better or worse), and just how the school will wso/">suit me in the future if I decide on going down the banking route.

On a side note, I know engineering is a popular major for recruiters, but how would Physics or Astronomy compare? And would it matter if I took the AB route in Engineering rather than the SB (would allow me more freedom in the shaping of my education).

And lastly, as far as languages and usefulness - I am nowhere near adept at learning languages, and am nowhere near proficient in spanish after about 4 years of the language in hs, and am thinking of taking Russian or Portuguese in college (I like how they're more unique and especially Russian has the WOW factor (in my mind anyway). Would they be of less use than a more common language such as Chinese or Spanish?

Thanks all,
Brandon

Russian is probably the most desired languages for incoming analysts due to the recent surge of activity there. Personally knew there people, two russians and a russian/finance major who spoke/read fluently that leveraged that skill in their favor.

But overall, I don't see it worth the immense effort.

My advice to you is to not waste your money and time at Brown learning a new language, it's completely not worth the money spent. Learn the language on your own through private tutors/or cheap CC courses (and it'll probably be much cheaper than brown).

Jun 5, 2007 - 9:18am

Don't get a tutor, go do a badass program during your freshman summer and maybe split soph summer between finance internship and another half-program abroad... that will look badass.

Learned Russian in Moscow, 2 summers while still getting a 8 week internship at @#$%@#$ Boutique.

Jun 5, 2007 - 10:07am

Find a nice foreign girl and make her bring you to her home country. Also, make her speak to you in entirely her own language. If you do that, you can always fall back on the "oh, I didn't understand what you were saying" line. Flawless.

CompBanker

Jun 5, 2007 - 3:49pm

Both have similar recruiting and reputations but I think it favors Dartmouth slightly.

But I'm sure you had the right choice for yourself.

Banking > VC > Tech PE; PM me if you would like any advice I'm happy to help
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