How to Get A Job With Low GPA And No Experience

rainmonkey's picture
Rank: Chimp | 13

A couple specific things I'm wondering about are:

  1. GPA inclusion, I'm only a 2.85/4.0 Although I managed to get on the Dean's List in my last semester
  2. Under my skills and interests tab, should I bunch all the computer skills together? Also, is that the appropriate place to put my interest in investing? On one hand, it's not something I learned through school, so there's no accreditation but does it not show that I am taking an active interest in learning how the market works and how to trade/invest?

First Job, No Skills, Bad Grades to Wall Street

Oh and I'm trying to get an entry-level position at any firm. It does not have to be a big name. I just need to get my foot in the door.

Will My GPA Effect My Internship Application?

When applying for finance internships, having a low GPA is a real hindrance. You want to be honest about it however and include your GPA on your resume. If you leave it out, your application will automatically be discarded. If it is missing it will be assumed it was too bad to include.

It is not necessary to include in your interests (or anywhere) an interest in investing. As you are applying for finance jobs, this is a given. Having personal investments is not something that stands out. Everyone does it these days and with your grades, it will be important to stand out. In the interest tab, include things that make you stand out. You want to include interests that are unique to you or that people can relate to.

APAE - Private Equity Partner:

Add your GPA unless you want people to assume it's too terrible to list and think you have a 2.4 or something. List your overall GPA first, followed by 'major' or 'concentration' GPA where you include grades from classes relevant to your named degree. Generally, that's more favorable than the overall in cases like these, so you may swing something that way.

For Interests, you need to remove all the financial stuff. Everyone already gets that you're interested in finance, you wouldn't be applying if you weren't. That's what the other 96% of your resume is, screaming out "PICK ME I WANT TO WORK IN FINANCE." Your interests are supposed to spark their attention and answer half of the fit questions before they even call you. If you are an interesting person, it ought to show your skills and interests. That's the one place you have free reign to express yourself a bit, so put what makes you, you there. It's called differentiation.

List your computer skills individually to demonstrate your abilities. It will help beef up your resume and potentially give you a bit of an edge.

How To Land A Job With Low GPA

To land a job with a low GPA, you will need to do some serious networking. Because your online presence leaves a lot to be desired, you will want to get in front of an actual person to demonstrate who you are and what you have to offer.

jake8383:

Network, network, network...With your resume you're highly unlikely to turn any heads or get callbacks from just submitting something online, you're going to need to talk to someone. Also, when talking to these people don't mention your GPA situation right off the bat because that will have an effect upon how they look at you the rest of the time.

When you do finally speak with someone, it will be important to change the conversation from your low grades to your other assets.

Read the below success story from Fast Company.

Read More About Pursing A Career In Finance On WSO

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Comments (17)

Jan 11, 2011

WTF is a performance profile? And <3.0 from Tufts...what kind of job are you looking for? You better be damn charming, because I doubt you're a hot chick.

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Jan 11, 2011

Performance profile section is completely useless, and without even reading through it, I can tell that's something more reserved for a cover letter.

  1. If you don't put a GPA on your resume, it's gonna be an automatic ding anywhere you go. If it's not on, people will assume that it was too bad to be put on.
  2. I'd just list out computer skills instead of making bullet points like you have now. Also, don't include anything about personal investing. Every single person and their mother includes it, so it won't help you stand out at all.

I'd say the best course of action for you to take it to network aggressively. Call up boutiques and sell yourself. With a low GPA and not very great work experience, you'll have an extremely hard time to pass through OCR and online applications.

Jan 12, 2011

Network, network, network

With your resume you're highly unlikely to turn any heads or get callbacks from just submitting something online, you're going to need to talk to someone. Also, when talking to these people don't mention your GPA situation right off the bat because that will have an effect upon how they look at you the rest of the time.

Jan 12, 2011

Remove the profile. Add your GPA unless you want people to assume it's too terrible to list and think you have a 2.4 or something. List your overall GPA first, followed by 'major' or 'concentration' GPA where you include grades from classes relevant to your named degree. Generally that's more favorable than the overall in cases like these, so you may swing something that way.

For Interests, you need to remove all the financial stuff. Everyone already gets that you're interested in finance, you wouldn't be applying if you weren't. That's what the other 96% of your resume is, screaming out "PICK ME I WANT TO WORK IN FINANCE." Your interests are supposed to spark their attention and answer half of the fit questions before they even call you. If you are an interesting person, it ought to show through your skills and interests. That's the one place you have free reign to express yourself a bit, so put what makes you you there. It's called differentiation.

Network. You'll need it.

Jan 12, 2011

Your communication skills aren't that great if you put a comma in the wrong place...

"Superior communication skills developed through debate, and public speaking"
That comma shouldn't be there...

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Jan 12, 2011

ok so far this is what i've gathered.
1. remove 'performance profile'
2. include gpa, its worse if i keep it hidden
3. remove personal investing

now my question is, given my crap-tastic profile, what would be the most successful route to go? i know i can't get into an IB or any of those things, and in terms of selling myself through cold calling, do i just call and go 'hi, i'm a recent Tufts graduate with a degree in quant econ and i was would like to know if there are any graduate/entry level/internship openings at your firm'?
Would another field that's even just slightly related be a better avenue?

I'm thinking of applying to a Masters of Accountancy program at Golden Gate University (or some program that will let me take the CPA) is this a better idea?

Thanks for all the feedback!

Jan 12, 2011

Let me get this straight you went to Tufts which basically means you did..very well in high school and now your going to apply to Golden Gate University? I'm so confused...this just shows someone who basically, was begged by there parents to do work and once your parents weren't around you did nothing. Unless your able to explain this situation better to an interviewer or you have beastly communication skills......and are able to network fantatsically....not sure if finance is for you.

The answer to your question is 1) network 2) get involved 3) beef up your resume 4) repeat -happypantsmcgee

WSO is not your personal search function.

Jan 12, 2011

[quote=blackfinancier]Let me get this straight you went to Tufts which basically means you did..very well in high school and now your going to apply to Golden Gate University? I'm so confused...this just shows someone who basically, was begged by there parents to do work and once your parents weren't around you did nothing.

DO most people jump to this conclusion of a poor gpa in a good college or just black?

I

Jan 12, 2011
papeete:

DO most people jump to this conclusion of a poor gpa in a good college or just black?

I

Maybe because OP said, "1. GPA inclusion, I'm only a 2.85/4.0"

Jan 12, 2011
papeete][quote=blackfinancier:

Let me get this straight you went to Tufts which basically means you did..very well in high school and now your going to apply to Golden Gate University? I'm so confused...this just shows someone who basically, was begged by there parents to do work and once your parents weren't around you did nothing.

DO most people jump to this conclusion of a poor gpa in a good college or just black?

I

Hmmm...OP said..2.85/4.00, no real internship, no experience? how would that be viewed otherwise...? It isn't just about what you learn from internships, and having other experiences it shows that you have a desire, and an interest in the field if your willing to spend some of your time doing things related to finance...and what does my race have to do with anything? Because I'm black I lack simple reasoning skills? Poor GPA+ Good School= Tried hard in high school didn't try as hard or worked 40 hrs/wk to stay in school or had a kid? OP didn't mention any of that did he...hence why, I said he would have to be able to explain the low GPA...

The answer to your question is 1) network 2) get involved 3) beef up your resume 4) repeat -happypantsmcgee

WSO is not your personal search function.

Jan 12, 2011

Alright, look black, i was an alright high school student, nothing great, i think i only got into Tufts because I was an international kid from a local school in the Philippines. Regarding my shit grades in college, I'll admit, I messed up, first time away from home and all that jazz, excuses or whatever. Pointing that out doesn't really help. The reason I'm applying to Golden Gate is just to take the CPA exam. From the looks of it, passing the exam lends a lot of credibility to one's ability. From what I've heard, it doesn't really matter where I take the courses.

Oh and black, thanks for the help, or rather, lack thereof.

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Jan 12, 2011

The reason i'm applying to GGU is that I just want a program that will fulfill the requirements allowing me to sit for the CPA exam. From what I've heard, it doesn't matter too much where I take the courses to fill said requirement.
As far as my grades, I was a decent student in high school, but I think I only got in because I attended a local Philippine school, so that helped my odds a lot. And yes, come college, I messed up pretty badly, and I can give all the excuses that I want, but it doesnt change anything.

So black, thanks for the help, or rather, lack thereof.

Jan 12, 2011

From my experience, you're probably better leaving your GPA off. If it's already low enough for them to judge you and shred your resume, don't just let them do it. Some of the BBs will certainly throw your resume away immediately if they don't see the 3.5+/4.0. Sure, they'll probably drop you anyways just because they can, but oh well! Find somebody to take you under their wing and understand your merits before they see your resume or ask about credentials.

Jan 12, 2011

Gravity, thanks, but i'm not foolish enough to pursue BB's anymore, I know that's pretty much a lost cause.

Jan 13, 2011

Hey guys,
so i took your suggestions to heart, removed some stuff and added others (like my gpa) and rearranged the format a bit.

http://www.razume.com/documents/18351
One question i have is, should i include that my summer experiences were in the Philippines, China and Philippines respectively?
That way employers wont go and try to find the Philippine company in the US?
(its a pretty small financing company)

Thanks!

Jan 13, 2011

Why don't you get a CPA and join a CPA accounting firm? Your options in finance are very narrow at this point, and you might get a better experience doing accounting. If not, if you've "snapped out" of your education issues then why don't you consider a masters degree? Get a stellar GPA there, and you will have a better time getting a job.

Oct 27, 2012
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