McCombs Undergrad Advice (sophomore)

bavaria's picture
Rank: Chimp | 6

Hey everyone, just stumbled upon this site a while ago and I have a question.

Here's a little background info first:
I was admitted this past Spring to UT Austin/McCombs as a transfer student. At the time of applying to the university, I was unaware that I could apply to BHP simultaneously. (It was my understanding that I couldn't apply to BHP prior to being admitted to McCombs. I now know otherwise...)

Anyways, today I called the BHP office because I was curious about any possible way to be admitted to the program. I was told that freshmen or sophomore admittance were the only options and that I was basically SOL. Well, that sucks...

Now, I have read a lot of opinions about BHP vs. non-BHP recruiting on this site. Some seem like far-fetched exaggerations, and others seem fairly logical...

My goal is to go into IB. What I want to know is, does it really make that much of a difference if I am not in the BHP program? Some of the stuff I read on this site is a little nerve-racking, but logic tells me that if I distinguish myself and interview well I should be fine.


Comments (4)

Aug 3, 2010

At the risk of stating the obvious, getting into a bank has two components:

1.) Getting the interview.

2.) Acing the interview.

My experience at Illinois was that a lot of people who weren't in the honors program- but demonstrated intellectual excellence in other ways- still got interviews at firms from Citi to GS to MS.

I would recommend focusing on getting an A+ in a 300 or 400-level finance, econ, or accy course that could plausibly have undergraduate TAs this year. Go to office hours; make friends with the prof; demonstrate mastery of the subject material. Ideally, form a study group and show some kind of evidence that you can help other students learn the material, too. At the end of the course, ask him if he could use a free TA. If you get the offer, that's the kind of ticket into banking that blows some kid in an honors program out of the water. You just have to get an A+ in the course, demonstrate genuine interest in the subject, and make friends with the prof.

Aug 3, 2010

My room mate, friends and a few girlfriends were in McCombs--some in BHP and some not.

If you can get into BHP, go ahead. It isn't a game changer in terms of interviews but the priority registration, exclusive networking events and smaller classes won't hurt anyway. While you are at it, try to get into the Financial Analyst Program as well.

What really will get you the IB gig is to set yourself apart from your class mates. This doesn't just mean to have a high GPA (as a former UT undergrad engineer, McComb classes are a piece of cake) but also to have leadership roles and genuine interest in finance. My room mate wasn't in BHP but made it into the Financial Analyst Program (deftly named FAP) and was active on campus and held leadership roles in the business frats.

He ended up with multiple offers from BB for internship.

Maybe this is just my retrospection talking but McCombs also offers many exclusive training opportunities (Bloomberg, Financial Modeling and etc) that aren't available to other majors--make sure to take advantage of them.

So the short answer is that I'd do BHP just for the networking opportunities but you'll need to still distinguish yourself for the IB gig. Finally, most BB positions that recruit at Texas at for Houston and typically involve Oil & Gas finance.

Aug 3, 2010

Thanks for the responses guys. Much appreciated.

Aug 3, 2010