I am an incoming sophomore at a community college that will be transferring to either UIUC or Ohio State. At this stage, investment banking is not my first choice for a career but I still want to keep that door open before I nail down what I want to do. I'm thinking along the lines of consulting or IB, with long term plans of getting my MBA and then moving into private equity. I am from Illinois so from the surface UIUC is a no brainier as tuition is about half the cost of OSU. The caveat is that I don't have the right courses to be admitted to the business school at UIUC so my only option would be to do Econ/Stats. OSU I am a direct admit to the Fisher COB and could major in Finance/Accounting or Finance/Econ which I heavily prefer over UIUC Econ as I wouldn't be required to take the high level calculus that econ requires + the business degree would have a leg up on econ degree. Biggest thing is the cost + distance from home being from Chicago. At any career I choose I'd prefer to be in Chicago. Bottom line: Is OSU Finance worth the additional 45K it would cost me above UIUC Econ?

Comments (11)

May 18, 2018 - 4:27pm

My concern is that being outside of the business school in econ would place me at a disadvantage to finance kids as econ kids at UIUC are often regarded as "business school rejects"

May 31, 2018 - 5:25pm

I get your worry. I don't think this is nearly significant enough to warrant paying an extra $45k to go to an academically inferior school.

Have you exhausted all options of ultimately graduating from the b-school at UIUC? Could you take summer courses before enrolling in the fall? Transfer after knocking out the pre-reqs? Speak to advisers/counselors about any possible way to get in, or take elective classes in the b-school to put together a transcript consistent with your interests?

If so, then just explain that to an employer. I suppose it could potentially cost you some looks, but if you do all the other things right (good grades, join relevant clubs, etc), I think you'll still be in better position than if you go to OSU - and you'll be $45k richer.

  • 1
Jun 2, 2018 - 10:42am

I have exhausted all options. The problem is that UIUC econ is not a very strong program and most students double major with math or stats. Higher level math is not my forte and I am concerned I may struggle in those classes. Econ also requires CALC 2 where as with business I'd be finished with math. OSU Fisher Finance is actually ranked higher than Gies Finance which makes me wonder how low UIUC econ is in comparison. Also, and this is the kicker, econ students don't have access to upper level finance courses which are important in gaining technical knowledge.

May 31, 2018 - 4:39pm

If they were equal in price i might say OSU business but seeing as OSU is more expensive and you want chicago than the clear choice is UIUC. Plenty of friends from U of I have gotten finance jobs from valuation/corporate finance/trading/etc.

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