Don't fall for UIUC trap despite what some folks here tell you!

skran's picture
Rank: Chimp | 6

Hi, I am at UIUC and have been active at WSO for past 3 years. I want to set the record straight: UIUC is not at all prestigious when it comes to quant roles in HF/MM/quant trading firms and you will be setting yourself up for failure if you come here.

My background: I am majoring in Computer Science with 3.9 GPA with background in ML and statistics. People here have advised that engineering especially ECE/CS at UIUC is prestigious etc. While UIUC is a good tech school (and ofcourse has excellent engineering programs), it's not at all seen as a school where recruiters will be interested for hiring quants despite what certain alumnis on this forum will tell you. They visit our school only for software roles. And I am not talking out of my a** here. Even the usual suspects at Chicago don't bat an eye at UIUC (let alone east coast bignames). Infact their quant team doesn't even visit the campus for talks and only employees in infra/software visit the campus. The current quant researcher at these firms who are from UIUC all started their career as software and don't get me wrong that's a viable route but landing quant role straight after graduation from UIUC is impossible.

I am usually an optimistic person but have hit a brick wall now. But I don't see getting anything now before graduation.

Why am I writing this post? Prospective students, you will be making decisions in next few months about your schools, please don't make the mistake I made and make a well informed decision. Good luck.

Comments (2)

Jan 5, 2019

Understood, but do people enroll at UIUC with the intention of becoming a quant? With that being said, people have broken into high-finance from much lesser known schools than UIUC. TBH, UIUC is comparable to MIT, but the latter is obviously an Ivy. That gives it way more publicity than a state school, no matter how good.

Yet, I feel that many MIT folks go into engineering and consulting anyway.

Jan 5, 2019