How do I begin?

Hi, my name is Nick. This is my first post on WSO. I need to know how to get started in investment banking, and if the prospect of starting is even possible for my current credentials/experience (or lack thereof).

A little background:

I'm 20 years old and a college dropout - not an ivy dropout, a gutter trash community college dropout. I started college at 13, not of my own will. Had a 4.0 for a couple semesters until I got into videogames and stopped caring about school. Graduated high school and went to a state school since my GPA was low. I thought I put videogames behind me - was quite wrong, ended up ruining my GPA further and withdrawing. I then dropped out after 2 semesters to play in semi-professional League of Legends. A short-sighted move, surely. After realizing the career trajectory in professional e-sports is nonexistent, I decided to go back to school. First semester at community college I was a 4.0 student again. Second semester I was a 4.0 again but ended up getting suspended for 2 semesters. This leaves me to where I am now - an insurance agent in a private sector insurance company. Just finished my first month as a released agent, making around 70k/year and projected to make 100k/year in the next 6 months. I'm working around 90 hours a week. The firm I'm with has unlimited opportunity for individuals who make the work their life, and I can easily join the 1% over the next couple years with my current numbers. The work, however, is not as enriching as I'd like it to be. I miss the classroom environment, and, dare I say it.. traditional career path?

Investment banking is something I've always had an interest in. My uncle is a tech banker at MS. His recent success was leading the Snap IPO, and some of his previous successful IPOs were Google and Facebook. He's always lived thousands of miles away in Silicon Valley and I regret not fostering a deeper relationship with him. To cut to the chase here, I want to learn the business. While anyone can do that with the power of the internet, books, and motivation, you still need that piece of paper (usually from an Ivy).. I believe it is a field I will be successful in, but have I made too many colossal mistakes? Good candidates my age are now juniors in college with 4.0s, internship/research experience, extensive extracurriculars, etc. Where can I start, despite the immense lack of credentials? I appreciate your brutal honesty, but from what I've read so far that seems to be a keystone of this site.

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Comments (9)

May 16, 2017 - 12:57am

It may suck to hear this but you need to go back to college and get your BA/BS in Economics/Finance/Accounting (something like that) and either a second major or at least a minor in Computer Science. While you're finishing your degree learn coding and become very comfortable with it. Be sure to join a few clubs at whatever school you attend at to network with classmates. Don't forget to network with alumni as well.

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