Long time lurker and first time poster. I just wanted to share how much WSO has helped me.
4 Years ago
I was a no-name at a no-name university and had nearly failed out of High-school. I decided one day to sit down and change my life (after receiving a LOUD wake-up call). So, I did what any money-hungry little freshman would do and literally googled, "what jobs make the most money?" My more naive self found that there were surgeons and hedge fund managers pulling in the dough, and I was not about to go to med school.
I ended up turning my life around
I lost 20lbs, getting a girlfriend, and eventually receiving a 4.0 after my first year. I applied to better schools near me (as a family member was sick and I needed to be near her). I was accepted into a semi-target in Texas.
After partying my way through Sophomore year, I decided it was time to refocus. I made another 4.0 the first semester my junior year and decided after a drunken night that Id like to enter proprietary trading. So, I used WSO's interview guide and prop shop list and applied to over 80 proprietary firms all over the United States.
Only one of them accepted me and I spent my junior summer there.
Change of Plans
After coming into my senior year I decided I did not want to do prop trading. This was a major problem as I did not have much deal exposure, or really any experience at all. I also knew I did not want to do investment banking (as many of my friends had done it and I did not think Id like it). So I went back to my roots. I applied to hedge funds.
Using one of the forums on this site I contacted as many hedge funds as I could: Cold-emailing, Cold-Calling, and speaking to numerous people. I even sent in a physical resume to over 100 different firms. I got about 10 responses. Only 3 interviews.
I eventually found out that one of the 3 funds that I thought was a hedge fund was a Family Office (~1 Bil AUM) that was invested fully in Private Equity. I really like their work, and aced all 6 rounds of interviews. They eventually extended an offer to me that I accepted. I will be working as a private equity associate.
Without WSO none of this would have been possible and I am very happy to say that I am finally on the path that I was meant to be on.
I am sure I will get grilled for this post, but if there are any questions I can answer please ask, and I will get to them right away.