Getting into I. Banking at 34

Wondering if Investment banking is within reach for someone in my position. I need some honest advice and appreciate those who read through this and can offer some insights.

Here's the backstory...

I finished college in 2006 and went to work in China for a company that starts/manages international high schools in Asia. I stayed with the company most of the past decade, taking time off to do an MBA at a decent program in 2011. I worked my way to the top of the organization, and was responsible for operating 2 schools in Asia which became profitable and from that was able to save about $700K cash by the age of 33. I then invested roughly half of that into a school of my own, which is now nearly breaking even. During all this time, I studied hard and became fluent in Chinese, and even have a certification of HSK 6 (highest level possible).

Overall, I've been pretty successful in the education business, but I just feel burned out and like I need to do something totally new with my life. I'm also really wanting to move back to the USA. I can't see myself working in the education industry in America at this time.
The school I currently part-own is going smoothly and does not need my full attention. I've always loved economics, technology, business and investing. As an MBA, I specialized in finance and did well in all the classes. I'm thinking Investment Banking would be a good fit for me, if it's not too late at this stage of my career.

I'm willing to work my ass off and start from the bottom to make it. Would it be futile to try, this late in the game? If so, what would be some good steps to transition into the industry? How long might it take to get my foot in the door? Are there any classes I could take? Should I get a CFA?

Thank you very much for any insights.

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Comments (5)

Nov 21, 2018 - 8:57am

anddd the MBA is from?

"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

Nov 21, 2018 - 8:59am

Really in 2011, the opportunity to go into I-Banking was there for you if it was from a 'decent' program. Not sure what that means.

Why didn't you go back then? I'm not just jabbing you, but trying to understand your true motives here.

"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

Nov 21, 2018 - 9:02am

Yeah, you're totally right. I had the chance back then but just didn't take it. The job market back then was really tough and I just thought it was not worth trying. At the same time, I had a decent opportunity and just figured to go with what I knew. 7 years later, time for a change..

The MBA is from University of South Carolina. A few of my classmates got into investment banking.

Nov 21, 2018 - 9:06am
simpson1984:

Yeah, you're totally right. I had the chance back then but just didn't take it. The job market back then was really tough and I just thought it was not worth trying. At the same time, I had a decent opportunity and just figured to go with what I knew. 7 years later, time for a change..

The MBA is from University of South Carolina. A few of my classmates got into investment banking.


ohh you got your I-MBA from there right

Oh cool. Yeah, I know the program. I've met Darla Moore.

There used to be an alum from that program at an IB in Charlotte. Not sure if he is still there, but he might get you an interview (he's MD level).

"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

  • 1
Nov 21, 2018 - 9:03am

"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

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