Do you feel like you are/did utilizing college fully?


As a current sophomore at a strong target, with a relatively easy major (business/finance), it seems like the things I do outside of my major matter just as much (if not more) than my grades (since its quite easy to get 3.7+). I'm not in a social fraternity, but I am in a few competitive finance clubs and try and network more. But it seems like I should be utilizing my university a lot more to get the full benefits.

What else do you guys do besides the usual?

Comments (57)

May 9, 2017 - 7:40am

Have a mix of business and non-business extracurriculars. I strongly believe the quality over quantity rule applies when joining student organizations. Find two or three that you are really passionate about and take on senior leadership roles over the years. Don't be the person who is a 'member' of ten organizations but has no leadership roles.

I find that most people do something related to their major like a student investment fund and then something fun like a club sport. I'm also a huge advocate of developing your technical writing and verbal communication skills via extracurriculars. So joining an organization that allows you to practice public speaking routinely, such as speech club or the debate team, are great uses of time.

May 12, 2017 - 4:58pm

Wholeheartedly agree. Join an organization where you take a big role. You'll have a lot of fun if the club is interesting, meet a bunch of people with similar passions, and really develop leadership skills. It's one thing to be president of a high school club that's just half a dozen close friends. Another thing to need to regularly manage and present in front of a hundred random peers younger and older than you and ensure that the organization is in a healthy position when you leave.

May 9, 2017 - 8:22pm

School is a waste of time. All anyone cares about is what school you went to and your GPA.

Let me hear you say, this shit is bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S!
May 11, 2017 - 9:04pm

I went the opposite route.. Was at a non target but pushed it all to the max. It was a white knuckle ride but worth it. You can cruise by with good enough or you can find out what you're really made of.

Overwhelming grasp of the obvious.
May 11, 2017 - 10:01pm

Was chatting with one of my contacts who also left banking but is still in finance. On the job learning will be more important than school training because the work environment is so notably different. I think you're doing the right things by networking with your peers and people you aspire to in your own career success. College is traditionally about discussion with peers. Once you get on the job you'll have the training necessary to be prepared moving forward. The connections you build over time will help lead to more and better opportunities. I also learned most of what I use today on my own volition, built on the foundation I got in my Econ/business degree.

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:28pm

Utilizing Remaining Time in College (Originally Posted: 11/07/2016)

So as many students know, the Junior Year, SA grind is slowing to a halt. Along with many future monkeys, I was fortunate enough to land a couple offers and plan on signing this week. As I pick my head up to breathe, I realize I will have a lot more free time in front of me. I will continue to be active in clubs and keep my grades up — but I am starting to realize the extra time I can devote to personal enhancement. I am not talking about finance related matters, but other fulfilling activities.

So, current financiers of WSO, how would you have utilized your time differently? Is there a "bucket list" of items you wish you checked off?

I don't care who your dad is
Sep 16, 2017 - 4:29pm

Hit the gym, hang with friends, have fun etc
Once you hit the desk it'll be a tough sprint to get your ft offer, so just try to go in as relaxed as possible

I'm talking about liquid. Rich enough to have your own jet. Rich enough not to waste time. Fifty, a hundred million dollars, buddy. A player. Or nothing.

See my Blog & AMA

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:33pm
  1. Start a YouTube channel
  2. Pick up a copy of this book
  3. Execute every play in the book and document the results in Vlog form on your Youtube channel
  4. Gather a ginormous number of subscribers
  5. Realize you can make millions in this YouTube game while having fun and regret getting into banking in the first place
I'm talking about liquid. Rich enough to have your own jet. Rich enough not to waste time. Fifty, a hundred million dollars, buddy. A player. Or nothing.

See my Blog & AMA

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:47pm

I'm considering this seriously but then I'm ugly af. FML

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."
Sep 16, 2017 - 4:42pm

That's not not what OP is saying. He's saying that he wants to focus his attention on personal development rather than "the SA grind" which a lot of people fully understand. I think it's a fantastic idea and doesn't hinder or undermine your hard work. And he is just asking what new goals to focus on.

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:44pm

If you have some spare dollars to burn, travel around a bit. Doesn't necessarily have to be far away, but go somewhere you haven't been before. Do things you've wanted to do but haven't had a chance to.

Hit the gym hard. Become the biggest guy on day 1 of your SA stint.

Read in your spare time. Instead of watching another episode on Netflix, actually pick something interesting up and read it.

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:57pm

The usefulness of college (Originally Posted: 04/28/2014)

As I am about to graduate from college, I have been pondering how useful a college education really is from an objective standpoint. I understand that it is almost necessary these days to get an undergraduate degree to get a decent job (other than tech) and getting an elite one is necessary to break into high finance. However, putting aside the career opportunities and even the cost, was a college education really worth the time? I go to a top 20 university and even here everyone sort of bullshits their way through all of their classes which makes me wonder what anyone actual learned in 4 years. With the procrastination, going to class hungover, spending maybe 20% of their week actually doing schoolwork, it makes me wonder what the point of college really was.

May 12, 2017 - 12:51am

What George Kush said is right; college is the time to push beyond what you think your limits are and explore your potential. Did you think of an idea for a mobile application? Execute your idea, you will fail. Do you think your school needs a women's opinion journalism club? Execute your idea, you will fail. Do you want to learn multi strategy investing? Go to your library, pick up a book, execute on what you just learned, and fail greatly. You will fail at most of your ventures, if not every single one, but college is the best place to fail and learn. Failing at these type of ventures will teach you far more than any professional development course.

Regroup, analyze your failure, improve yourself, and try again. You will eventually see and experience success with one of the ventures you decide to pursue - at that point you will want to challenge yourself even more. Go for it. Be the best you can be.

May 12, 2017 - 11:41am


What @George Kush said is right; college is the time to push beyond what you think your limits are and explore your potential.

I agree with this, and would also hope that people take a very wide perspective on how to push limits. Coursework is one small piece of the many, many opportunities someone has in college to try at something. But try something, and try it hard-- classes, clubs, sports, the organization half of fraternity life, study abroad, internships, co-ops, networking, so on and so on.

There's nothing wrong with having fun in college; not everything has to be a struggle. But few try to make a distinction between things that are fun and teach you something and things that are fun and don't teach you anything. Too much of the latter and you'll find that four years passes by pretty quickly.

Sep 16, 2017 - 4:59pm

I think it's pretty useless. I think that when you have no idea what you want to do with your life or really what interests you have or want to pursue, being able to take a diverse range of classes is really valuable. However, once you that intro to accounting class or constitutional law class makes you realize that that is exactly what you want to do, I feel like the value of the education totally depreciates. I feel like for the vast majority of professions, you either need to get a graduate degree that teaches you all the requisite knowledge and skills to succeed (law, medicine) , or you go through rigorous training after being hired (finance).

Other than that, your completion of undergrad with a good gpa just seems like a proxy for intelligence and the ability to perform utterly retarded tasks and learn random information in short periods of time.

Sep 16, 2017 - 5:01pm

You bring up a valid argument. I'm still trying to figure out what the true value of college was in my life and I can definitely say that it had nothing to do with classes or academic achievement. I did a lot of things in college that on their own aren't impressive, but when I take a moment to consider the range of experiences I had, I can't say that I'm disappointed. I am regretful for not having gone to a target school when I had the chance to do so, but my college experience taught me a number of lessons I would not have learned elsewhere; things about pride and my own self-perception that would never have changed if I were an Ivy student.

This is all meant to convey that the value of college in your life is something you have to decide, and I think that's the point. We change so much between the ages of 18 - 23, no matter where we go, that throwing something like college into the equation makes for a very profound experience to try to unravel.

Put simply, I think it's better to live in the moment during your final year in college and beginning your career. Let the profundities of life ambush you a bit later, which they would have done anyway. Also bear in mind that you're headed toward the quarter-life crisis. I assure you, that shit is real, even if it is brief.

in it 2 win it
Sep 16, 2017 - 5:02pm

I think college is largely what you make of it. For me it took a year, but college helped me realize what I want to do with my life going forward. It was also the first environment I encountered where learning was thoroughly encouraged and facilitated both in and out of the classroom, and I think this was the largest added value. I can honestly say that without college, even though mine wasn't a particularly good one, I would be significantly worse off.

Sep 16, 2017 - 5:03pm

The value of a college education has nothing to do with the actual content. Rather the value is in learning how to apply yourself to independent attainment of knowledge, discerning between varying sources of opinion, and being able to construct, present, and deconstruct an argument based on fact. College education reforms behavioral and intellectual patterns in a way that is rarely available outside an institutional environment.

Sep 16, 2017 - 5:05pm

The value of college is reckless abandon in the pursuit of pussy with zero fucks given about the consequences of staying up until three am on a Tuesday night at the bar in pursuit of said pussy.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne
Sep 16, 2017 - 5:06pm

the man has figured out life!

but college really wasn't all that helpful, merely a hoop to jump through. I credit wikipedia and the likes for my paper! and shame on anyone who doesn't donate to wiki, you know you abused it like a dirty hooker when you're rushing your bullshit of a paper at 3am in the morning.

i'm not smart enough to do everything, but dumb enough to try anything
May 12, 2017 - 3:01am

What do people usually do in college finance clubs?

You killed the Greece spread goes up, spread goes down, from Wall Street they all play like a freak, Goldman Sachs 'o beat.
May 12, 2017 - 10:32am

Some are pretty laid back, they invite speakers/companies to come in, and the rest of the school is invited to attend.

A number of them are extremely tacky, they're these "private investment clubs" which basically manage $1000 and try to be selective and recruit kids like they're GS when in reality its a bunch of kids without internships trying to play banker. I got invited to join a couple my later years and I was being interviewed by kids younger than me without experience, and was also told I'd need to attend mandatory "networking sessions" where 80 people had to suck off 5 undergraduate juniors... really?

I knew a couple people running them so I got to see the rejection letters they wrote: "After careful consideration, we regret to inform you that despite your impressive qualifications..."

May 12, 2017 - 4:55pm

Haha I loved the ones that took themselves ultra-seriously like that and the upperclassmen that grew massive egos from it. Everything from coming up with BS homework assignments for new members to having pitches for a fake portfolio and then getting into heated arguments over it.

But yeah mostly it's chill. Invite banks in to bring their recruiting teams/school alumni for a speaking/networking event outside of the school career center. Run a few workshops to introduce kids to the industry, modeling, valuation, etc.

May 12, 2017 - 10:37am
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