Need life advice — is pursuing this path even worth trying?

I'm graduating from, a CC right now, age 23, deciding on whether or not to attend CUNY Hunter or CUNY Baruch, got into both. Hunter is the more simple path, end goal is to become a doctor, dermatologist. Baruch is the more complicated path, major in finance, network, attempt to reach BB level, move into HF, potentially start own HF or become a manager at one, somewhere in between attend a m7 business school if needed.My GPA from the CC is 3.0. Will BBs care about the low GPA? Should I even put it on my resume?If I kill it in Baruch, a non target, and network well, will I even have a chance?I have until the middle of december to decide which college I want to attend. It'll either be the doctor path or the finance one.

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Comments (16)

  • Incoming Analyst in IB-M&A
Nov 20, 2021 - 2:47pm

I'm going to try provide some actual advice here but as others have said - there's a lot going on here. I went to med school and am starting soon in M&A. Fundamentally, you need to figure out which one you enjoy and will actually be for you. It's an uphill battle to break into either industry without great grades, ECs, rec letters etc and the only way you'll get through all that (bluntly) crap is if you have genuine desire to be working in the area you want to work in. Your 'simple' path of becoming a dermatologist is filled with multiple 'check points' which are highly competitive. From getting into med school to matching into a specialty to actually completing residency, each of these is a horror show. Given where you are, I would focus on getting your GPA up, establishing some strong leadership/EC experience and thinking deeply about how you want to spend your career. Prestige, money, the Dr title will only drive you so far and it's surprisingly little when you're faced with on call nights as an intern or all-nighters on a live deal. 

At the end of the day, I'm just one guy on the internet, so take me with a pinch of salt and best of luck! 

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  • Incoming Analyst in IB-M&A
Nov 21, 2021 - 3:16am

Yeah, sure. I am about to graduate this year. I committed emotionally to medicine very early on (family pressure etc etc) and never really stopped to think about it. Ended up doing some internships in M&A during medical school and loved it, felt that both were great career paths and since I clearly had a preference for one I should go into that. Don't get me wrong, I think medicine is a great career path if you're into it, but it just wasn't for me.

  • Associate 1 in IB - Restr
Nov 22, 2021 - 2:15pm

You'll be able to leave your CC GPA off of resumes and just go w/ a cumulative once at Baruch, but it's going to be tough to get a banking internship your junior year (assuming that you are starting CUNY as a JR)?  It's changed since I was in school, but those spots may all already have been filled.

I come from a fairly similar background, having gone to a NY JUCO and gotten into UG at 23 YO.  I went to a semi-target and was in a program w/in that school that places very well into IB; however, did not get an IB internship during UG, but ended up placing during FT recruiting.  However, big parts of that were having 2 good finance (non-IB) internships under my belt, a 3.9+ GPA, and being part of that program (biggest part).  I'm just going to be frank w/ you and say that your odds of getting into IB are low, let alone BB.  Sure, there are isolated stories of guys w/ bad GPAs from non-targets breaking in, but they're not the norm and those guys never break into banking (let alone BB) right out of school.  Your current GPA is going to get your resume taken out every resume pile, you'll be dinged for going to a JUCO (somewhat unfairly) until you put some distance btwn that (internships, coursework, finance clubs, etc.), and you're on a foreshortened time frame to get your shit together since you're starting at a 4 year as a junior.  Networking is highly unlikely to get you a job given this - it tends to be a deciding factor when choosing btwn kids who each check all of the boxes already. 

I would imagine that you have a better shot at becoming a doctor.  I'm not trying to be a dick or crush your dreams, but your odds are pretty long to begin w/ and you're setting incredibly lofty goals (BB or bust, followed by HF, followed b M7, followed by having own fund) w/out any track record of achievement.  Each goal that you just listed are generally reserved for ppl who work their asses off (or whose fathers' worked their asses off to help their dipshit kid get a job).  I worked multiple jobs during my JUCO stint and managed to get a 4.0 - there are very few courses in JUCO (some STEM being exception) where getting an A/A- requires more than showing up and giving somewhat of a fuck.  If you're in those STEM classes, you made a strategic error by not picking easy courses to inflate your GPA and expand the universe of schools that you can get into and boost the GPA that'll be on your resume.   

  • Associate 1 in IB - Restr
Nov 22, 2021 - 3:38pm

If you're dead set on IB, I would plan on spending 3 years at CUNY so that you can fill out your resume more and boost the GPA.  Take any finance internship that you can get sophomore year - I did 2 JUCO yrs + 3 at uni and had a RE development internship my first year at uni and boost your GPA by any means possible.  Don't know how much / if standards have changed post-COVID, but anything below 3.50 was an auto-pass when I recruited. 

That said, being a doctor is an excellent career that allows you a normal life once you get past residency.  Also, you have a longer time period to right the ship.  As opposed to having a year to position yourself for IB recruiting through getting grades up, landing relevant internships, and networking, you have up to 3 years to boost your GPA and whatever ECs/experience med schools look on favorably to give yourself a good chance there. 

Hope all works out for you.  

Most Helpful
Nov 22, 2021 - 3:23pm

Why is your GPA so low at a CC? Were you working full-time or something? Your absolute #1 priority in life for the next 2-3 years needs to be getting a 4.0 at whatever school you transfer to. This is actually more important if you choose to pursue medical school than if you want to do finance (I was pre-med at a target)...but the GPA will get you dinged in either path if you don't raise a lot. The world is getting more incredibly competitive by the minute, so it becomes very easy to filter out a huge pile of candidates for any competitive job or graduate school by grades. Getting good grades in this day and age is the bare minimum for anything worthwhile, so a poor GPA is inexcusable. 

  • Associate 3 in IB-M&A
Nov 22, 2021 - 8:26pm

Honestly, both med school and banking are going to be a real uphill battle for you. As a best case scenario, you should do 3 years at Baruch (start as a sophomore) and work your butt off that fall networking. If you start as a junior, you've already missed recruiting completely. Get a 4.0 that semester and hope Baruch's cGPA policy is that your CC GPA is ignored. Don't put the CC on your resume at all, but the GPA minimum is typically 3.5, and more like 3.8 from a school like Baruch, and you may have to factor your CC grades into your resume GPA depending on your school's policy.

Med school may be even harder for you, especially if you're set on derm. That is the most competitive speciality and you're against people with medical ECs since high school... with Step 1 becoming pass fail, what med school you go to becomes more important, and honestly even if you got a 4.0 at Hunter (unlikely given how hard jr/senior year science classes are) you are going to be quite limited by your 3.0 from CC and presumably few medical ECs. If it's derm or nothing, this path will only lead you to disappointment.

Not trying to be negative here, but it sounds like you are just trying to pick the most "prestigious" path and not being realistic about your situation - I mean saying you either want to be a Derm or in IB is like me saying I want to do either the NFL or NBA if I were a 5'5 30 year old, those are the 1% of medical and finance and you are not qualified right now. You need to have the absolute best grades from now on and think clearly about what you personally want to do and not just prestige.

Dec 6, 2021 - 1:09am

One random thing I'd add, becoming a doctor is already very challenging and becoming a dermatologist is even harder. I was randomly having a convo with my buddy the other day and we were joking that if we were smart enough to become doctors (we aren't...) that Dermatology is 100% what we'd do. Cushy life, nothing life threatening, you get to help people with their appearance, salary can easily get to $500k on a 9-5 schedule, and there are more benefits. The problem is, annually there are only about 400 dermatology residency spots in the US. Also, given the above pros I mentioned, a lot of MDs want to go into dermatology. I ran some numbers and there's something like 22k med students each year and 400 spots for derms. You basically need to be top 2-5% of students to even have a chance at getting into dermatology. Don't ask me why that is, but it's a massive uphill battle to not only get into med school, but but to then become a derm is even harder. I'd really sit down and think about the type of person you are, talk to your peers who are becoming doctors and think about whether you want to spend the next 10 or so years of your life pursing that goal. You honestly need some sort of passion for medicine or for helping others.

Also, as others have echoed here, regardless of what path you take, a 3.0 from a community college isn't going to cut it for any traditional high end white collar profession. Not to say you can't go be an entrepreneur and kill it, frankly I don't grades correlate that well with success, but as I'm sure you know, whether it's medicine, business school, investment banking jobs, etc, they all want the best of the best and GPA is a barrier to entry in any of these professions. You might be able to hide your CC GPA, but you're going to need a 3.5+ and probably even get considered for a lot of the things you're thinking about. 

Dec 6, 2021 - 2:00am

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