Is my goal even realistic?

I am an economics major at a no name state school (northeastern Illinois University), and am currently a junior.  I have a 3.78-3.80 gpa (depending on how these finals go), and interned at a small PWM firm over my sophomore summer.  I would like to end up in IB eventually, however am hitting a hard wall, and that is the number of alumni, or rather lackthereof, that work in IB.  I am finding networking very hard, as a lot of my cold contacts on linkedin go unanswered.  I was unable to transfer out of my uni because I was accepted into the economics honors program, and I am in the middle of an sanctioned academic research project, in addition I was also granted a full ride.  I tried to network like hell and am just hitting a hard wall because I don't have any alumni connections.  I understand that the window is closing for the BB and boutiques, but I was wondering what you guys would do if you were in my spot.

Comments (6)

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Dec 7, 2021 - 5:46am

Get like a Big 4 or reasonable boutique IB internship for junior summer then recruit for FT IB positions. 

You're a nontarget who's a little behind the game... but who cares. Just work hard these next 1.5 years and you'll be fine.

Most Helpful
Dec 7, 2021 - 10:43am

I was in your position. I had virtually no alumni base in IB. I was the first from my school to land an internship and/or subsequent full-time role at a global, full-service investment bank. You just have to network your butt off. It's not impossible, you just have to want it more than everyone else. Hit rate on LinkedIn for responses would be like 10%. Maybe 50% of those who responded would actually end up meeting you or having an intro call. Maybe 10% of those would actually end up being helpful. So, it's a numbers game. I had more success reaching out to people who I had something in common with that I could highlight in my intro message to personalize it (i.e. "I noticed you also interned in audit and then moved into IB, which is what I'm seeking to do based on my experience interning in audit at x firm", or "I noticed you're also a member of x business fraternity at your school - I am a member as well"). For more specific guidance on how to network, see my post on this thread (it's the green one marked as "most helpful"):…


  • 5
  • Intern in IB - Gen
Dec 7, 2021 - 10:48am

You could grind and find a way into an analyst position. If it doesn't work out go into a somewhat relevant finance role and go into IB post MBA, shouldn't be a problem at all

Dec 7, 2021 - 11:18am

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