How I went from 10 rejections to one dream internship this year.

Finance Interviews:

Goldman Sachs 1st round. No.
Altamont Capital 1st round. No.
Bracebridge Capital 1st round. No
Bridgewater Associates 1st round. No.

Consulting Interviews:

Cornerstone Research 1st round No.
Analysis Group 1st round. No.
Simon-Kucher 1st round. No.

Final Round Interviews:

Centerview Final round. No.
BlackRock Final round. No.
JP Morgan Final round. No.
Another Bulge Bracket Bank -- YES! the final interview I ever had AFTER the slew of rejections above.

Learn from rejection:

I'm not going to say what company I did get into (to remain anonymous), but I did get into a BB this year. Coming from a finance background with a high GPA at an IVY, I started getting depressed because I got dinged in so many interviews. There were so many times when I felt like my efforts were futile. THEY'RE NOT! Once you get rejected, move on to the next one. Learn from it. What did you do wrong? Was it a technical question that stumped you? Was it the fit questions? Behavioral questions?

There is always room for improvement:

PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. With your roommates, friends, and career center. Whether on the phone, skype, or in person. There is ALWAYS room for improvement. Smile during the interviews. I found that you have a much personable look when you do. Don't be afraid to talk about you what makes you unique (I won art competitions in the past, which surprised many interviewers). As for consulting, don't be stupid like me--go and PRACTICE how to answer case study questions with someone. As for finance, make sure to study up on the technical (the WSO was a god send here!). There are always the same questions (DCFs, valuations, etc.). Use the Investment Banking Interview Prep Course ...I believe it was the single biggest reason why I ended up with an offer.

In summary, this was the most grueling thing I did in college. I'm glad I did it because it was a great learning experience. Moral of the story: DON'T GIVE UP, NO MATTER HOW IMPOSSIBLE IT LOOKS. If this didn't convince you, then I don't know what would.

The background story is here: I'm so pathetic--I can't get past 1st round Interviews

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Comments (35)

Sep 27, 2017 - 2:09pm

high GPA at Ivy to banking rags to riches

2020 Update: recounting my experiences in PE and sharing thoughts on recent deals at
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Mar 26, 2018 - 11:11pm

high GPA at Ivy to banking rags to riches

more like riches to riches


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Best Response
Jun 2, 2015 - 6:57pm

I think the struggle comes in getting the interviews in the first place. I can't imagine how impossible it might've seemed to get into banking coming from an ivy with a high GPA and numerous interviews... Nonetheless, congrats.

Edit: Don't know why so many of you are getting rustled over this comment..

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May 8, 2015 - 1:27pm

Congrats! Commendable effort however, as someone mentioned it is a string of rejections during the clearing stage that takes the spirit out of most aspiring bankers. To feel like one is not even worth a first round interview because one merely attends a non-target can make you feel pretty worthless. When you get that interview, it comes down to you to prove that you are a worthy candidate. Saying that, I'm glad you learned from your mistakes and finally ended up with an offer.

Bitch please, I love bananas! If you found my advice useful, hit me up with one.
May 28, 2015 - 10:11am

Congrats OP. I had a similar story this year, received multiple internship rejections but it all worked out in the end because I got my dream internship. Just have to keep grinding.

May 28, 2015 - 12:58pm

Honestly, once you get to the final round, it's mostly about fit. I'm always a believer that if you answered the questions well, did your best to be nice and personal, and you still didn't get the offer, you wouldn't have fit anyway and you didn't really do anything wrong. You can't feel like a failure if you didn't get an offer due to personal differences.
It's not easy to get an internship. Even with a great background- it's hard. No matter what image type A people put up about easily landing internships, it's all false. Don't be down about it and keep trying.

FYI- once you have a great internship, you'll be beating full time interviews off with a stick. I had to turn down so many companies. So, it gets much better. (It also feels nice to tell the company 'no' for once.)

May 28, 2015 - 2:04pm

Lol I remember when you posted that about how pathetic you were. I remember thinking that with that attitude of course you're not going to get any offers. You must have changed that attitude or really made your interviewers pity you. Either way it worked.

Also, were you the one who made the thread about what is the right amount of eye contact? Had a feeling it was you given the lack of success, but maybe not.

May 30, 2015 - 7:12pm

Coming from a finance background with a high GPA at an IVY

i like how you capitalized that even though that's like a standard expectation if you're a target applicant, especially given the grade inflation at some of those schools. It's not like you're fighting against kids from Mississippi State for spots at GS IBD.

Make Idaho a Semi-Target Again 2016 Not an alumnus of Idaho
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Feb 28, 2018 - 4:11pm


This is so inspiring. I totally dinged the interview I had today at a BB.
I always find interviewing with Directors Is very hard. A lot of Directors have 0% patience and seem to forget that they were once rookies.

Mar 26, 2018 - 11:08pm

how do the students from non targets make it if people from ivy's can barely make into IB?


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Jan 29, 2019 - 11:19am

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