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Nov 30, 2018 - 3:47pm

in all seriousness, very few people that have the education level of senior bankers will intentionally torpedo a candidate because they have an alternative religious background. That tends to be the preserve of the poorly-travelled and poorly-educated. Now if you had said that you have to go to synagogue 5 times a week during the workday, that may not go over well - in the same way that having a very demanding hobby that required significant time off work wouldn't go over well at any bank.

Nov 30, 2018 - 5:13pm

If you otherwise fit in, I don't think this would be an issue or really even noticed. I would ask "Why Hebrew" too and probably think it was a cool answer. Always good to be well-rounded, would keep it on your resume


Nov 30, 2018 - 6:52pm

Thanks for the positive comment. I tend to over read/analyze into situations and I think I just psyched myself out.

I stood out from the crowd, he even said in layman terms that he didn't come to meet me just to pat me on the back - but that he actually saw something of value in my report. After he asked about me he told me about himself and I got to ask him a couple of questions regarding market activity and about his own opinions to which he replied and gave rather lengthy answers to. Hopefully I'll get an email/call back next week for the next round.

Nov 30, 2018 - 9:26pm

I'm Jewish as well and its come up during some informational/ coffee interviews for the exact same reasons as yours. Pretty rare when it comes up, but it has. I would say:

1) It should not hurt your chances. This isn't 1930 anymore.

2) If it does, would you want to work with people that backwards thinking anyway?

You're definitely overthinking it. But if by some far off chance you aren't, you dodged a bullet anyway. Don't stress and keep plugging away.

“The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” - Nassim Taleb
  • 1
Dec 3, 2018 - 1:28pm

If you check my recent threads I posted how I pulled a hail mary and reached out to MDs last week and all of this week handing out a research report on an industry and a related company.

I didn't include my resume when I reached out to this one MD. Fast forward and I followed up, he replied asking to meet and to provide my resume. I agree to a day two days from the convo and attached my resume to the email.

Fast forward to today (2 days passed) and we had a solid "fit" interview. Standard questions: why IB? Why x school? Why x report? Tell me about this specific time and how you handled it, etc.

Then he asked me about one of my extracurriculars that I wrote at the bottom of my resume. I wrote "currently learning hebrew". So he asked me "Why Hebrew?"

I was rather fluid wirh my reaction so I naturally responded and I said that I wanted to connect with my heritage and my roots since I'm Jewish after all, and I also wanted the challenge of learning a new language. After this I quickly switched and mentioned how I plan on learning Mandarin afterwords as well.

Overall I thought the interview went well since he said "I'll talk to the partners and we'll see when we can get you in to talk to them" after we had a fluid conversation and back and forth with each other.

The only thing that's throwing me off is the fact that he asked the question and that all the MDs at this specific boutique are WASPs (not that there is something inherently bad about that, but usually I see at least a Jew or two listed but not in this firm). On the other hand he should have known I was Jewish prior to the meeting because I wrote of an extracurricular involvement I had volunteering for a Jewish initiative on my resume, but he could have also NOT read that part either and skipped it accidentally.

Long story short for some reason I feel like I shouldn't have mentioned that I'm Jewish and I feel I could have ruined my chances because I put "currently learning Hebrew". Am I over thinking this?

Yeah, you're over thinking this. Not sure why.

"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

  • 5
Dec 3, 2018 - 5:15pm

This was a serious concern back in 1918, but I think we're good now in 2018 for Jewish backgrounds....

However, if you're really into studying hard core Islam, I could see how that might rub some people the wrong way at a WASPy institution....

Dec 3, 2018 - 5:34pm

Hey thanks man. After consulting with the forum and reconciling my own fears as irrational, I am no longer worried about this issue.

I was wondering if you might be able to provide guidance on one more thing: I've already sent a thank you after my meeting with the MD. When should I follow up about their decision to meet or not with me? I met last thursday, thank you'd friday. Any tips?

Dec 3, 2018 - 6:18pm

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