Doing a second bachelor degree to get into HF or PE

ThatsSoWACC's picture
Rank: Chimp | 15

I graduated 3 years ago with a bachelor in finance from a non target Canadian university with a 3.0 GPA, I recently passed level 3 of the CFA. I have been working in the back office of a big private wealth management company, i started in operations and moved up to fund accounting.

My goal going into finance was getting into HF or PE, I applied to a lot of IB positions in my last year of undergrad (BB, MM, and boutiques) with no luck. I have been applying to jobs almost daily for more than a year and a half now; IB, S&T, M&A boutiques, pensions, investment analysis jobs in PWM, etc. to no avail. Not even 1 interview.

When I first graduated and failed to land a decent job I decided to pick up whatever job I can and hopefully get into IB after the CFA and maybe the FRM. Now after meeting people and gaining experience I'm starting to lose hope as I'm realizing how unrealistic this goal is. The vast majority of people in HF, PE, and BB IB are from top schools. The non-target minority are from STEM fields like math, engineering, physics, etc. with a lot of analytical experience. There is of course the outliers who come from non-targets and non business or economics related fields but it's very rare.

Right now the only opportunity I see is to get into PWM which isn't something I am excited about. I am an analytical person and I'd like to manage individual securites, not working with clients and building them mutual fund portfolios. Not saying there's anything wrong with it or that it's inferior, it's just not my thing.

Because of this, I am now considering going back to school for a second bachelor in a STEM field, possibly computer science or mathematics, and do very well in it (My work ethic and study skills significantly improved since my undergrad). I think this will help me get into a top MBA program and finally get me closer to my dream career. Worse case scenario it'd give me exposure to another analytical field to fall back on. I am also interested in education and teaching and so I think this will help me if I want to go that route.

I was thinking I can also do PWM, get the CFA hours and become a charter holder, do the FRM, do well in the GMAT and hopefully get into a good MBA program. From the research I've done this is a risky route as MBA schools mostly put the weight on the undergrad and so this probably won't increase my chances of getting into a top program.

What are your thoughts on this?

Comments (5)

Most Helpful
Aug 25, 2019

what about investment specialist roles within PWM? these teams cover individual names within the asset class that they're specialised in, and feed investment ideas to the sales/relationship bankers. discretionary portfolio management teams in PWM could also be a consideration, which is basically AM work in a private bank. i am sure all these could be options since you already work in PWM.

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Aug 25, 2019

Do you know the paying range for those jobs?

I know in my firm it doesn't pay much in comparison to the financial advisors.

Aug 25, 2019

not sure about NA or EU, but in SEA where I'm at, investment product specialists get similar base pay as investment advisors, but advisors have a greater upside for bonuses as it's a sales-oriented role assisting the private banker with pitches.

that said, i believe this may be a better option than going back to school. the opportunity costs and the uncertainty doesnt seem worth it imo.

Sep 4, 2019

A second bachelors seems a bit much. If you're interested in a STEM field, maybe focus on going towards a masters in financial engineering.
The MSFE program offers seven (7) concentrations:
Asset Management
Computation & Programming
Computational Finance/Trading Systems
Finance & Economics
Financial Technology
Machine Learning for Financial Engineering

"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

Sep 5, 2019
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