Don't go to IU Kelley*

*In many cases

I'm a long time lurker and this is my first post. This might get downvoted to shit since so many people here are IU shills (see that one dude who made posts on like 5 separate accounts promoting Kelley) but some of you need to hear this.

I've seen some crazy comparison posts on here and people are waaayyy overrating Kelley. Since I started working, I've met a ton of Kelley kids, but I've also met a ton of kids from every other school in existence. You can make it from anywhere. Yes, the IB Workshop program is great, but not everyone gets in. To see kids here comparing schools like UNC to Kelley is just stupid. Go to the best school you are accepted to, and can afford.

For those of you who have Indiana as their only option, ignore this. For those of you who are deciding between one of your top choice state schools and Indiana, go to your state school. If you work hard you will still make it. Don't throw hundreds of thousands away because some spam accounts on WSO told you that Indiana is a top target. (Hint, it isn't)

TL;DR WSO high schoolers with 3.3 GPAs love saying that Indiana is better than it is since it is the best school they have gotten into. While it is good, don't fall for the hype.

Comments (85)

Most Helpful
  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Mar 30, 2021 - 9:31pm

lmao UNC is much better than Kelley in every single aspect. 

  • Associate 2 in IB-M&A
Mar 31, 2021 - 11:17am

I'd have to disagree. I have seen significantly more UNC kids and they seem to consistently place very well. IU's IB Workshop is great, but it is not all of Kelley. If you are at UNC KF you can break in no matter what club you are a part of. IU is more in the league of Penn State etc. 

This is not to say that Penn State is bad, quite the opposite! There are just as many opportunities at PS as IU. I just don't want to see prospective students going into significant debt to attend IU over an equal (or even better) school just because incoming Kelley freshman on WSO tell everyone that it is a top target.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Apr 1, 2021 - 1:16am

I broke into IB from UCSB. IU Kelley has far more placement than us, not even a question. Every year since 08, about two or three people have made it into banking from UCSB. Go to UCSB for the college experience, but you'll have to hustle for a good outcome. Decidedly non-target. 

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Mar 30, 2021 - 11:15pm

Title is a bit misleading. Sure, there are definitely better schools than IU but it's also undeniable that there are Kelley kids going to all the top BB/EBs. Point being if you're a top student and motivated, the same opportunities will exist there as the best schools.

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Mar 30, 2021 - 11:25pm

Top student and IU don't mix. Also, there are definitely opportunities reserved for targets that IU kids don't have access to

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Mar 30, 2021 - 11:36pm

Just looking on LinkedIn there are students going to GS, JP, EVR, MS, Q, Moelis and so on. Pretty much all the top groups that everyone on these forums constantly talk about. Is it harder? Definitely, but in the context of banking, I don't see which opportunities aren't possible.

  • Associate 2 in IB-M&A
Mar 31, 2021 - 11:13am

I definitely agree! My point is that if you are a top student and motivated, the same opportunities will likely exist at one of your own state schools and whatever slight difference there might be between X State school and IU is not worth hundreds of thousands.

  • Associate 2 in IB-M&A
Mar 31, 2021 - 11:08am

Not at all! I have tons of respect for the Kelley program but I want to make sure that prospective students understand that it isn't the only one out there.

No one should be comparing UNC to Indiana (given no $ difference) and no one should be paying hundreds of thousands to go to IU because which might be either marginally better or equal to their own state school. Opportunities are everywhere if you work hard, and nowadays many state schools have good IB programs similar to IU's IB workshop.

Mar 31, 2021 - 12:00pm

I totally agree! Kelley is a great program and those kids place really well but when kids are asking should I go to IU or Vanderbilt it's like a smack in the face.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Mar 31, 2021 - 12:08pm

The IBW is so overrated it's unbelievable. Kelley is a fun school that produces solid bankers that are pretty good at modeling from day 1. However, the IBW's placements over the last few years have not been stellar. Sure, they have the handful of people that place into PWP and MoCo every year, but they only get a couple that place into top BBs or EBs. That placement is very far below the semi-target that I went to where people from any club could place into top BBs/EBs. Additionally, you are seeing more and more members of the IBW place into LMM banks whereas if you're at a target or even a semi-target, the only people going to LMM banks are people with very low GPAs, or who were late on the networking game. 
TLDR: Kelley is far from even being a semi-target, it's a nice Big10 school that is fun. 

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Mar 31, 2021 - 5:56pm

Prospect here looking at schools so just trying to get a better understanding. Are you saying PWP and MoCo aren't in those top BBs or EBs? A commenter above mentioned GS, JP, EVR, MS, Q. Are those more in line with what is considered to be the top groups? Sorry if it's stupid, just trying to understand better.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Mar 31, 2021 - 6:03pm

Yes. Less than 3/year will get top shops like Q/GS/JPM/MS/EVR/CVP/PJT. Most will get mid-tier BBs or MM shops. A few will get mid-tier EBs like MoCo and PWP. 

May 22, 2021 - 6:45am

This is false, I'm currently in the IBW and can give a little bit of data if anyone is looking to make their college decision. This year so far we placed two at Evercore, five at Moelis, five at Rothschild, five at RBC, BofA MD says that they are taking five (spoke with him), four at Guggenheim, five at William Blair, one at Goldman Sachs, three at Perella Weinberg, and other places. We are also a target and have firm presentations for Liontree, Morgan Stanley, Barclays, Jefferies Greenhill, Lincoln, FT Partners, Cain BrothersBaird, BMO, Greenhill, GTCR, Ares (we had firm presentations with Ares and GTCR but they are not necessarily hiring for summer analysts from IU). In the class above us, top candidates also placed in Qatalyst, Centerview, PJT Restructuring, Lazard Restructuring, Goldman Sachs TMT. I name-dropped all of these firms to show that as a member of the IBW, you will have a good chance of breaking into EBs and BBs if you are a top candidate. Even though there aren't as plenty of seats for IU kids at EBs or BBs as targets like Uchicago or UNC, you still have a good chance of making it. For kids that didn't get into Ivys or other true targets, don't be discouraged. IU Kelley is still a great school and the IBW recruiting process is very thorough. If you are a good candidate, you will most likely make it. One perk (if not the biggest) of being in the IBW is that you have access to information of recruiting cycle, since we have pipelines to many banks and the recruiters work very closely with the heads of the IBW, you will not miss out on opportunities and know when to move on from a bank or keep grinding.

Also, in terms of diversity recruiting within the IBW or for getting into the IBW itself. It will always be easier as a diverse candidate to break into IB/ any high finance jobs and in this case, the IBW itself. However, only around 30 - 35 girls (not 100 lol) were actually applying to the IBW this year, and 21 got in. It is definitely easier to get accepted as a diversity candidate, however, many of my male, non-diversity friends also broke in (this year there are 67 males, 21 females if I recall correctly). Hope this helps!

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Apr 2, 2021 - 3:55am

ok this is just not true lol. Yeah your chances are probably slightly higher if you're a woman, but as someone who is currently involved with the program I can assure you that the overwhelming majority of the workshop is male. Closer to 15 girls a year than 35 simply because of lack of interest

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Apr 3, 2021 - 2:56pm

Also wouldn't say half are reserved for women because there aren't enough candidates but yes your chances are significantly higher if you're a woman and they tend to be far more lenient on you as well.

May 22, 2021 - 8:09am

This is not true at all. Only 250-280 people ended up applying to the IBW and stayed enrolled in F-355 by the end of the class (not withdrawn). At least 1/3 of the people who originally wanted to apply to the IBW dropped out of the process by the end of the F-355 class. But if you are determined to do IB and stayed until the end of the class or the application process, the acceptance rate is around 35% (~88/250).

Apr 5, 2021 - 11:00pm

This dude is a troll and doesn't even use proper grammar. No way you get into the IBW with grammar like that. Anyway IU Kelley is a great school. If you wanna go to Wallstreet you need to get into one of the four finance workshops e.g. IMW, CRW, IBW, CMBW. If you can't get the grades or do the networking to get into a workshop you probably aren't cut out for Wallstreet. The entire recruitment process for the workshops is based off the recruitment process for Wallstreet. Anyway I got into the workshop and ended up landing a junior year internship at an EB.  Anyway all these kids bashing Kelley lack the stats to prove their arguments. I would skip this forum and go to Linkedin and do a filter search to see the amount of Kelley kids on Wallstreet. You will be thoroughly surprised at Kelley's placement.

Apr 4, 2021 - 2:29pm

UI Kelly is Harvard no cap

To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.

  • 4
Apr 4, 2021 - 10:49pm

As a IU guy, I agree with this post. There's def better options out there and any T25 school is def better if not equal. But, for those considering Kelley, it's a great program with great professors and you have the potential to build a great undergraduate network. But if you're deciding between a pretty good state school and Kelley, you're not gonna throw your recruiting chances to shit if you go to your state school. You'll still be able to recruit wherever as long as you do well and try your best. Good thing about Kelley is that if you don't want to do IB and switch your career path to something else, there's always someone or something at Kelley to help you get there.

Apr 5, 2021 - 12:04pm

I went to Kelly.  It's a great school...BUT...I agree in some respects to you.  But if its IU vs say... CO IU.  Thats common sense. There are differences between top 20 and the rank 50+.   

Apr 6, 2021 - 7:11pm

Colby is a very selective school but IU places better for IBD. That being said, I'm sure the Colby alums are very loyal given how small the school is. Two totally different experiences – pretty selective, small liberal arts college in Maine with an extremely affluent student body vs. a decent business program housed within a massive state school in Bloomington that will largely hail kids from public high schools out of Indiana and surrounding Midwestern states. At a similar price point, I feel like Colby makes more sense given the overall caliber of students that you will be around but you should try to talk to current students / alums and visit (if that's even possible). That being said, IU will offer a more "traditional" college experience.


  • 5
  • Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Apr 10, 2021 - 12:03pm

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