Help: Northwestern v. University of illinois Champaign

arpster88's picture
Rank: Chimp | 5

Hi,
I'm a freshman here at U of I and I am doing pretty well in my classes (gpa 3.95) so far. I'm looking to transfer into Northwestern or some other schools that recruit heavily for consulting.
Personally, I have decided to go into consulting because it will def give me more exposure to a wide variety of industries. I want to use this experience and go down the path of an entrepreneur. Right now, I have my own Web design company and its doin pretty well. I enjoy entrepreneurship a lot (I've also entered in a a few business plan competitions) and I can see myself doing that later on.

Anyways, one of my questions is whether I should transfer or not?

Do elite consulting firms compare you amongst others from ur school or is everybody after the inital screen viewed the same?

Last year, only two kids managed to get into bain and company. I feel that here at U of I I can def excel in finance and other areas but chances are slim

At NU, however, competition is fierce and I really want to get into the undergrad kellogg certificate program

Also, do any of you recommend any other schools to transfer to.

Thanks!

Comments (11)

Nov 30, 2007

Hey there,

I was actually in a very similar situation a few years ago... looking to tranfer fom Big 10 to UT Austin into business school (which is incredibly tough out of state) but I had an identical GPA to yours and actually stood a chance. Also looked at Northwestern which is a great school, love Evanston and you can hop the El to the city to go out every weekend.

You will definitely have an easier time landing a consulting job at Northwestern than U of I. Although two things to consider: 1) it is possible that your interests may change from now 2) your college experience will be different at Northwestern.

I ended up staying at my Big 10 school b/c of friends who I didn't want to leave behind, the college experience I would be giving up and I knew I would be able to land myself a job at almost any place I wanted with enough effort and luck. This has been true: 3 final round BB banking interviews scheduled from a non-target.

Weigh the pros and cons... and as important as banking/consulting/whatever we all want to do on this board can be... remember you really do only get to do college once.

Dec 1, 2007

I see lots of northwestern kids go into consulting - also consider Michigan.

Transferring is worth your time and effort.

Dec 2, 2007

At u of I we have a special program called the Hoeft Technology & Management program which takes about 25 kids each year, half from business, half from engineering. There were only like 2 that got into elite consulting firms. I KNOW that I will excel really well here at U of I but at NU competition is so steep. When I checked the companies that some NU econ students went into I wasn't that impressed either. I mean they were good companies but there weren't THAT many kids going into elite consulting.

Dec 3, 2007

The thing with elite consulting firms is that they recruit very few to begin with. Even from top schools you aren't going to see mass numbers like you would for IB. Something to keep in mind.

For U of I vs NU, top consulting firms do recruit at U of I because of its stellar engineering program. Northwestern is a better overall school but doesn't have much of a quant focus. If you are really set on transferring, you should look into somewhere on the east coast.

Dec 3, 2007

....

Northwestern is fine, transfer. Yeah it may be easier if you get in to Harvard to get a top-tier GMC job but I'm assuming you want to stay in Illinois? Northwestern is a fun, good, well-regarded school, no doors are going to be closed coming from there.

UIUC is next to impossible unless your top choice is Deloitte.

Learn More

2,037 questions across 209 consulting firms. 11 Cases developed by a McKinsey Associate, 10+ hours of video. The WSO Consulting Interview Prep Course has everything you’ll ever need to ace your consulting case interviews. Learn more.

Dec 4, 2007

actually, at this point I'll go wherever it is best for my education. I was naive and narrow thinking that staying instate is the only option I have. Now that one year has passed, my views have changed and I am looking at other schools. Do any of you have some good ones to suggest? (besides HY).

btw, your responses have been really helpful so far. I truly appreciate them.

thanks.

Dec 5, 2007

Any suggestions? That is a broad question. What are you looking for?

There is Penn, Brown, Dartmouth, NYU, Columbia, Emory, Georgetown, Vanderbilt, Chicago, Virginia, Duke, etc. In no particular order, of course. It's really up to you and your personal preferences and situation.

Dec 5, 2007

If you have any chance at Penn I would look into that. Wharton is top of the top.

Dec 5, 2007

Penn, Dartmouth, Stanford, Chicago, MIT, and Columbia are probably your best bets (other than HYP which you already mentioned). At that level, it is almost a case of them wanting you more than you want them (if you are a top student) but you still need to perform on interviews obviously.

Georgetown, Vandy, Emory, NYU, not so much... you can still get in, but much more of an uphill battle.

Dec 5, 2007
boozer:

Penn, Dartmouth, Stanford, Chicago, MIT, and Columbia are probably your best bets (other than HYP which you already mentioned). At that level, it is almost a case of them wanting you more than you want them (if you are a top student) but you still need to perform on interviews obviously.

Georgetown, Vandy, Emory, NYU, not so much... you can still get in, but much more of an uphill battle.

Agreed. I was just naming off schools that I thought were better than Illinois (in varying degrees obviously). Some definitely have stronger recruiting than others; many more doors are open for Ivy League grads.

Dec 5, 2007
Comment