OSU for free or ~260k in debt

Hi all, I'm a high school senior thinking about college choices. I was wondering in your opinions if It makes sense to go to a school like OSU, Miami OH, or UC for practically nothing or to go to a school like Michigan, Virginia, UNC, Georgetown, or even Vanderbilt for ~260k debt. I'm in a tough spot because my parents make enough money for me not to receive financial aid but they are also only helping me pay a small fraction of the cost, which I am super grateful for. So, what would you do if you wanted to get into IB and eventually PE?

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Comments (209)

  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 8:42am

It's not impossible to get in from the Ohio schools, but saying it's not going to be easy is understating it. Sure you can find examples of OSU kids on walk street, but a handful of kids out of 40,000?

Out of the bunch you mentioned, Gtown would be most worth it. Yea it's a lot of debt. But also apply for as many scholarships as you can find. Apply for little tiny $500 ones too. Everyone's instinct is to plug the numbers into a spreadsheet like a monkey and go with whatever the spreadsheet tells them. There are however so many intangibles to going to a school like Gtown. There's a reason the college admission scandal did not involve OSU. I think the choice is clear

Most Helpful
Oct 8, 2021 - 9:49am

$260K in loans would be a huge mistake. That's almost a $3k/month payment assuming he pays it off over 10 years. That type of debt can cripple optionality if he doesn't want to stay on the IB->PE path for years. Might not be able to do an MBA if he still has $150K+ outstanding, or lock him into a job he hates just for the money. 

  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 10:05am

Average salary for business majors at a big state school is ~$45-50k. You can't assume you're going to be one of the few outliers who break in from there. So in all reality that is your salary expectation if you go OSU. 
 

If you go to Gtown, much more likely to break in and to have an income at least 3x the OSU average. 
 

Edit: shit on this all you want. I went to a school similar to OSU and that's the average salary. Point out the lie

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 8, 2021 - 1:02pm

Wonder why you put Gtown ahead of Michigan. Michigan is top 3 biz school in nation, and has many more alumni on Street than does GTown. Just curious, why would you recommend GTown? 

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  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 2:08pm

Apols didn't realize that $500 isn't worth your time to apply for. You're right don't apply for any scholarships and definitely don't waste time working through school. What's the point of incrementalism-all or nothing

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 9:35am

Just network your ass off from a nontarget. Make great connections with your teachers and career counselors. People make it seem way harder than it is. You may not get a brand name investment bank but youre still doing the same work with less deal flow but everyone here is too critical. You will be able to do whatever you set your mind to a non target. Its not worth the financial stress to go to the schools you listed.

  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 10:09am

Surprised by this feedback. Instead of starting off at a major disadvantage at OSU (relative to those at other schools), go to the better school and turn your hustle towards getting scholarships and working to somewhat minimize the debt. At the end of the day, you drastically improve your expected income by going to Gtown. Yea you'll go into some debt, so work hard and aggressively save for a couple years and you'll have it paid off. I guess if you're the type that will overspend and let the debt sit around forever, don't listen to me. But if you semi responsible you will make it work fine

Oct 8, 2021 - 1:07pm

Toll Ride

Yeah you could pretty easily pay it off in 2-3 years if you only live on 50k a year, which isn't terrible, given where banking salaries are now. By the time you're in banking they'll probably be higher too.

Can you provide the starting salary and bonus you have in mind, how much goes to taxes, how much goes to rent with roommates in a bit great area, and the let us know how you reached the 2-3 year timeframe? You're dealing with someone who may make a crippling decision if he chooses wrong based on your advice, may be good to run the numbers again. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Oct 8, 2021 - 10:16am

You will be fine at OSU. Just work hard and start early. Once you start your career it will all mostly depend on you. Taking that much amount of debt is not ideal.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Oct 8, 2021 - 10:43am

If you go to one of those schools sure it'll be pretty difficult to make it to a BB. That being said it's very possible to end up in a MM like Key, Baird or WB in the midwest. Additionally, with low debt (if any) in a LCOL city making six figures that will put you in a great situation. Coming from someone who is at a BB who went to one of those schools. 

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:46am

Any of my in-state choices I will be absolutely 0$ in debt. I'm curious, what amount of debt would make the out of state schools I listed worth it? If I could get debt to around 100k would that be worth it?

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Oct 8, 2021 - 11:02am

It all depends on what you want, the more debt the less freedom you'll have. If you go to one of those schools you essentially have to to IB or the debt will cripple you. I know IB and PE sound interesting right now but if you get to school and realize you like history or just hate finance you're shit out of luck.

Also, the more debt you have the less you can enjoy college and your first couple years. You might need to get a job in college and you'll still want to pay off the debt the first couple years. That 2-3k+ every month eats into your 100k salary real quick. 

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:49am

See if any of the state schools have a pipeline to banking. Sometimes random nowhere schools have a bespoke line into certain banks.

Here's an example for you. When one of my buddies worked for RBS or UBS, it was one of the big banks in Stamford, the analyst class had kids from the usual suspects - penn, Yale, gtown, Michigan. But there a handful of kids from weaker schools like trinity and miami of ohio.

It turned out a bigwig at the bank went to Miami of Ohio and basically mandated 5 kids from each class should come from there.

  • Intern in PE - LBOs
Oct 8, 2021 - 6:12pm

That's true, but it's also much more common in other countries for the parents to be paying for college, unless the government covers it. At least in the part of Asia that I come from it is.

Oct 8, 2021 - 6:20pm

That's true, but it's also much more common in other countries for the parents to be paying for college, unless the government covers it. At least in the part of Asia that I come from it is.

This doesn't capture the full story. Most families cannot pay the 100-300k college costs between tuition and living expenses. Other countries, for better or for worse, subsidize education as you noted (and we do too). Most countries also have urban campuses so students can live with parents and commute to class. The notion of going to school hours away, let alone a flight, is odd to most of the world. This whole system enriches geriatrics who teach four hours a week and have one hour of office hours a week where they can be bra pullers and maybe discuss some useless comp lit. I don't blame parents for not affording their children's non-engineering dreams at a private college. 

Oct 8, 2021 - 11:09am

Inflation is wild-  take the debt and better school

Array
Oct 8, 2021 - 1:11pm

Premia

Inflation is wild-  take the debt and better school

Yea take the debt to enrich some 60 year old English professor with a moldy beard who has to take four viagras to fuck his grad student who has a tube around her stomach, sort of like the wife he met at a Grateful Dead concert way past their prime. Meanwhile he could be fine at the free school. 

  • VP in PE - LBOs
Oct 9, 2021 - 1:17pm

The money doesn't go to the faculty. It goes to the bureaucratic administration at the top and all the non-education-related bullshit they spend money on. It's just like K-12 education and why our education system for kids is shit. Faculty compensation is almost always scaled on top of a small base (80-120k maybe). Everything on top of that is a portion of the research grant money they bring in for the university. Just like a MD, you have to bring in money or you kinda get softly pushed out and disliked, even if you are tenured. Also, just if you're curious, Universities take more than half of the grant money you bring in for your research. If you get a 10 million dollar grant to research aerodynamic wings for NASA aircraft, you're immediately gonna give ~5 million to the university and have ~5 million left over to actually conduct your research. Fucking crazy.

  • VP in IB-M&A
Oct 8, 2021 - 11:33am

Invest in yourself particularly when you're young. Network is incredibly important. Surrounding yourself with likeminded people who are pursuing similar career paths will pay dividends throughout your career.

No ones going to be able to tell you $X in debt is worth it. It's not something you can plug into a spreadsheet. The private schools you listed all come with the network intangible and path of least resistance to a job making $220k+ at the age of 22. That sets the stage for the rest of your career. You need to decide how much that's worth to you.

If you're one of the few at the state schools where it works out great. But you might find you get lost in the shuffle at a school of 40k people and end up making $50k at grad in an FP&A role. You then  either need to go the business school route for the reset or spend the next 10+ years scrapping your way up the corporate ladder to clear $120k all in comp. 

Oct 10, 2021 - 9:23pm

If you're driven enough to pursue IB seriously in ugrad you're not going to fall all the way down the ladder to a $50K FP&A job. More likely you end up at a boutique or LMM bank, which btw still send a decent number of folks to small PE shops. $260K is still an absurd amount of debt when you're an IB analyst. 

  • Associate 3 in IB-M&A
Oct 8, 2021 - 11:38am

Option C - apply to semi targets that will throw 50% merit aid or more at you. Look up schools that are generous with that and match them up to the semi targets list on here.

  • Associate 3 in IB-M&A
Oct 8, 2021 - 12:44pm

Notre Dame, Emory, Amherst, Northwestern, UGA (b school), IU Kelley, BC, W&L, SMU, Wake Forest, Villanova

Some of those are harder to get into than others, or you probably wouldn't get aid, but just throwing a bunch of names out to give you an idea. If you search for the thread "Comprehensive Undergraduate Target Schools" on here it'll give you a nearly complete list. I'd start with researching mid-ranked schools (rankings are stupid, but just generally look outside the T20) that are generous with aid, and then diligence on here how strong their IB recruiting is. Some of the above would be quite generous to you and have pretty solid IB prospects. 

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 6:36pm

if any interest in living in TX, SMU could be a good option and can be very generous with scholarships too I've heard

Oct 8, 2021 - 12:26pm

Hi op,

I went for free to my instate school for undergrad, did great with my grades and got some okay internships, then killed the gmat and went directly for a masters program at a top school afterward. This saved me a ton of money and i still ended up getting the job you get by going to an elite undergrad.

If you are worried about debt then i think this is a good option

There are plenty of good masters of finance or MiM programs to go for after undergrad!

Oct 9, 2021 - 12:33am

Wanting to add to this: It is also possible to do a 1-2 year MSF/MFin program immediately after undergrad and end up in BB IB. Cost wise would probably be less than 4 years at a private college, but it can still be expensive if it's at a top program like Princeton.

Oct 8, 2021 - 12:58pm

bpf12345

Hi all, I'm a high school senior thinking about college choices. I was wondering in your opinions if It makes sense to go to a school like OSU, Miami OH, or UC for practically nothing or to go to a school like Michigan, Virginia, UNC, Georgetown, or even Vanderbilt for ~260k debt. I'm in a tough spot because my parents make enough money for me not to receive financial aid but they are also only helping me pay a small fraction of the cost, which I am super grateful for. So, what would you do if you wanted to get into IB and eventually PE?

Under no circumstance presented here should you take out 260k in loans. Bust your behind to get a 4.0 in a useful major and you will have good career options at the OSU-level college. You're 18 and have, at most, a small semblance of understanding if financial services is a fit for you long-term. IB and PE sound flashy so many are attracted to them on that basis.
 

As a former attorney, many of my classmates and co-workers took out similar sized loans and made over 150k starting out (a better scenario than those I knew at my Ivy League undergrad who took out large loans). They struggled to make payments and it shackled them for years. Wedding, put off.  Roommates, of course. Mortgage, funny joke. Children, now that's a cruel question. As an attorney, I can say you will almost never have a chance to discharge this debt if you are fired, become sick, or realize your life's calling isn't office work 80 hours a week. All for a decision you made when you were 18. 
 

What is also factoring into this is the quality of the school you are paying 260k for. All of the ones listed are plenty respectable, none will give you a serious enough shot at IB and later PE to justify this. If you said Harvard Econ or Stanford CS…. maybe. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 1:29pm

I went to OSU and work at a top NYC bank and graduated with zero debt so can chime in. 
 

Ohio state places pretty well. Definitely one of the better non targets. Not hard to get into banking from here - just do all the right things: get into BCI, do the IBP program and get into futures and network hard and you'll land something. Tons of alumni on the street very willing to help. Fisher is very consulting, f500 finance, and asset management focused given proximity to Columbus cleveland and Chicago and JPMs huge office in CBUS. This means that competition to get into futures is relatively low compared to Ross, Kelley or other semi targets/targets where everyone is gunning for IB.
 

Futures gets about 120-150 applicants and accept 25 or so, but a lot of those applicants are just dropping the resume in the bucket and are totally unqualified, so it's really not THAT hard if you know what you're doing and NETWORK with current members of the program/faculty. 
 

Not that many students go for banking out of OSU, almost everyone who goes for it and really puts in the effort will end up with an offer from a decent bank. Class of 2022 has TWO kids in GS TMT alone - so you do the math is $260k in debt worth it with the same outcome even if the the path will have a little more resistance?
 

Consistent pipeline of kids going to GS, JPM, Evercore, blair, Baird, Houlihan, barclays, jefferies, cain bros, Keybanc CM, UBS, big RBC presence, the list goes on. OSU places 35+ kids /year to front office IB roles over the last couple years and has quietly become one of the strongest big10s for IB placement outside of the obvious heavyweights which will cost you an arm and a leg (Kelley the exception here, although it is still significantly more expensive than OSU). 4-5 years ago fisher was LUCKY to place 10 kids to good banks and half of the placements were Key and BGL in cleveland. The landscape has dramatically changed over the past few years. 
 

that being said, GT, Xichigan, and other targets will be better for you in the long run and will make your life easier, but in my opinion it's not worth the crippling debt (in your specific case) and there's always a chance you won't make it even if you attend those top schools since it's much more competitive within your respective class since everyone is going for banking at those schools. 
 

go bucks man 

  • Analyst 2 in AM - FI
Oct 8, 2021 - 2:58pm

I also went to OSU and can back up everything from this post. I also know of many people who have gone from OSU-> front office finance -> top MBA, so save any potential debt burden for that. No way is the debt worth it in this situation.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 8, 2021 - 3:41pm

I am a senior at Georgetown with a full time IB NYC M&A offer and without revealing too much detail I am very familiar with Ohio State and I would encourage you to go to Ohio state and just work really hard. Do not take on the debt.

Oct 10, 2021 - 2:32pm

I go to OSU currently and can back everything mentioned here. Aside from the kids going to GS TMT, there's someone at JPM for TMT and a lot of people going to Key / Baird as well so there's diversity in opportunities. Fisher Futures is by far the common denominator so if you do end up going to Ohio State, you're going to want to target it for sure. Outside of that specific program though, Fisher as a whole is getting a lot more attention as a semi-target for a lot of firms in consulting and banking overall so while its reputation isn't at the GT / TTUN level, it's rising relatively quickly.

always go bucks

Oct 8, 2021 - 4:14pm

No creative thinking in here, can't believe this hasn't been mentioned yet. 

Go to OSU my dude. And if you REALLY want to get that target name on your resume, crush it and transfer after 2 years. 

That's what I did from a non-target. Result? I paid off all my (minimal debt) within 2 years of graduating and now all anyone sees on my resume is the target name, not the path that got me there. 

  • Analyst 3+ in IB-M&A
Oct 8, 2021 - 6:37pm

+1 for bankers from Miami OH (esp in Chicago). Tons of people at WB, Baird, HL, Lincoln from there. Some people at Monroe Capital, Antares, and Golub too. Conversely, no one in NY knows of Miami from experience. Given they are similar caliber school, I imagine it is similar for OSU but with stronger global brand recognition, possibly at the cost of losing Miami's insanely high average household income (in terms of networking).
 

The "how much debt" question then simply comes down to after tax leverage ratio, risk tolerance (getting stuck with debt reduces optionality), and OP's long term goals and ideal post-grad location. 

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:02pm

Thinking like an investor would, I'd say borrowing the money to go to a Gtown is better than going to a nontarget for free. Think about the levers you can pull to make the investment better. Here are just a few:

* Defer for a year to work, save up and spend on tuition, lowering your debt

* Focus and graduate in 3 years instead of the 4 that most people take. At the target schools with which I'm familiar it's feasible to shave off the year with advance planning of your major. I knew one guy at UPenn who even graduated in 2.5 years.

* Research what major makes sense for you based on your personal interest in the material, desired exit opps, existing skillset and willingness to work hard (as an example, majoring in econ requires much more study and technical preparation that majoring in humanities -- the benefit is vastly better opportunities). Most clueless undergrads waste valuable resources exploring their interests by taking classes in different departments, which is costly. You can just explore for free at home by looking up the syllabi and reading, getting a sense for what you like and don't like.

All in, if you get good academic results in the right major at a top school and hustle to get the right internships, many doors will be open to you that you would struggle to open coming from a nontarget. That's my working hypothesis. I encourage you to do all the research you can to poke holes in it or support it, then feel confident that you're making a decision based on facts and sound analysis.

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:17pm

hype2millennium

Thinking like an investor would, I'd say borrowing the money to go to a Gtown is better than going to a nontarget for free. Think about the levers you can pull to make the investment better. Here are just a few:

* Defer for a year to work, save up and spend on tuition, lowering your debt

* Focus and graduate in 3 years instead of the 4 that most people take. At the target schools with which I'm familiar it's feasible to shave off the year with advance planning of your major. I knew one guy at UPenn who even graduated in 2.5 years.

* Research what major makes sense for you based on your personal interest in the material, desired exit opps, existing skillset and willingness to work hard (as an example, majoring in econ requires much more study and technical preparation that majoring in humanities -- the benefit is vastly better opportunities). Most clueless undergrads waste valuable resources exploring their interests by taking classes in different departments, which is costly. You can just explore for free at home by looking up the syllabi and reading, getting a sense for what you like and don't like.

All in, if you get good academic results in the right major at a top school and hustle to get the right internships, many doors will be open to you that you would struggle to open coming from a nontarget. That's my working hypothesis. I encourage you to do all the research you can to poke holes in it or support it, then feel confident that you're making a decision based on facts and sound analysis.

Deferring for a year: you need to include the opportunity cost of delaying IB or whatever post-graduate job you eventually obtain, which will be higher than whatever low-paying gig you find during the gap year. You are only saving the interest payments on whatever debt reduction you manage (and it is unlikely to be more than 30k out of 260k with all that grocery bagging money…"

graduating early: pushing up recruiting a year is not necessarily advisable.  Networking, coursework, and sophomore internships all factor into obtaining an offer.  Accelerating to three years can be okay, I would not rely upon this or plan on it.

Humanities v Econ: no disagreement. Humanities can be studied and learned with a library card and free online lectures. Being an autodidact usually leads to a better grasp of the material than a professor telling you Shakespeare was a trans undocumented migrant  

TL:dr go to OSU and don't look back 

Oct 9, 2021 - 12:22am

Those are good points! On the point about opportunity cost of delaying the post-BA gig, I think a gap year before college would be a great opportunity to put in prep on the financial technicals that will help you get better job opportunities. In other words, it's an opportunity to help improve your final outcome (which there's no guarantee you'll get). It's also more time to study again for the SAT and apply again to college if needed to improve your outcome (different choice set of schools, more scholarship money, etc.).

With the pushing up recruiting by a year, I can see how the time crunch might disfavor you. But wouldn't you be applying to sophomore internships after your Year 1?

Oct 9, 2021 - 2:36pm

260k for an incrementally higher chance of IB at Georgetown or UVA is not great. If it was HPS, then absolutely. OP can do MBA after a 2 year analyst stint and be in the same position and not be crushed by debt.

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:04pm

Don't make the mistake in getting roped up into brand names. Taking ~250k in debt out of college if fucking detrimental to saving for retirement and investing your money at an early age. Especially if you try and get a mortgage or want to do anything else, that debt will be over you until your 30s if you are lucky. Work hard enough at a school like OSU, network your ass off, and BIWS!!

Oct 8, 2021 - 10:18pm

jimmy1228

Don't make the mistake in getting roped up into brand names. Taking ~250k in debt out of college if fucking detrimental to saving for retirement and investing your money at an early age. Especially if you try and get a mortgage or want to do anything else, that debt will be over you until your 30s if you are lucky. Work hard enough at a school like OSU, network your ass off, and BIWS!!

This. You do not want to be in your 30s with student debt, even mid to late 20s it ruins people. 

  • Associate 2 in ER
Oct 8, 2021 - 10:12pm

Apply to all of these and see where you get admitted. You may be surprised when it comes to scholarship

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 9, 2021 - 1:10am

Go to OSU, but if you're dead set on working in Chicago then go to Miami (Better alum presence in Chi). I'm a student at one of these schools, and to be honest it's going to be hard to get a BB role from either one, but if you're smart, get into either school's IB prep program (Fisher Futures @OSU or MUIBC @Miami), and aren't a total weirdo, you'll easily be able to place somewhere like Key or BGL where you'll easily make 120-150k in a dirt cheap city with no debt while still getting good experience. However, anyone on this thread talking about the top placements from these schools is bending the truth- it will not at all be easy to end up at a BB/EB unless you're a diversity candidate, and it's going to take a good amount of luck to pull it off. You'll have a much easier time from a semi-target like Umich/Uva, but that level of debt is absolutely not worth it since the ivies & Stern are going to recruit better than any of the schools you listed anyways. There's a level of debt that would make the better schools worth it in my opinion, but it would have to be around half of your 260k figure if not less. It might be worth checking out IU for a mix between the 2 options you laid out. 

Oct 9, 2021 - 2:56am

Dude you are absolutely bonkers if you do NOT take the DEBT and go to the BETTER school. I can't stress this enough. $260K is absolutely nothing from the jobs that you can land from one of those top school. If you are top bucket at an EB, you will probs make $700K+ pre tax - DO THE MATH

Oct 9, 2021 - 2:59am

I'm going to post twice to just reiterate my point. Don't throw your life away bc you are worried about a little debt. Actually if you have that mentality and are scared of a little debt then you don't belong on Wall Street. I know I'm going to get MS for this, but my close friend was in the same sitch as you - full ride to a top 30 state school but ended up taking on $250K of debt to go to a top 20 school

Oct 9, 2021 - 10:24am

u7o2q0qla4

I'm going to post twice to just reiterate my point. Don't throw your life away bc you are worried about a little debt. Actually if you have that mentality and are scared of a little debt then you don't belong on Wall Street. I know I'm going to get MS for this, but my close friend was in the same sitch as you - full ride to a top 30 state school but ended up taking on $250K of debt to go to a top 20 school

You're irresponsible for advocating this to an 18 year old and telling him he'll make 700k shortly after graduation. He is better off spending 130k (half the private school tuition) on Thai hookers and blow than your plan.  

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 9, 2021 - 1:39pm

This guy is delusional. Definitely just regretting his own path. THE DEBT IS NOT WORTH IT PEOPLE. IT WILL CRIPPLE YOU. This level of irresponsibility is why this country is completely screwed with student loans. There is a kid from UTAH STATE UNIVERSITY. I repeat UTAH STATE in my analyst class top NYC bank. Yes it's "rare" but I would take the risk of not landing a NYC IB job over 260k in crippling debt any day of the week. And for the record, the Ohio state kid (funny enough) in my analyst class is probably one of the smartest and motivated kids in the class. 

Oct 10, 2021 - 7:55pm

The fallacy of this argument is the school's offered up like Vandy and Michigan may be better, but how much better are they than OSU really? It's not like it is OSU vs. Ivy. So maybe he has a 60% chance of making IB vs. 40% at OSU or something? IDK random numbers, let's not fight about it. I don't think the risk/reward makes sense when you take into account opportunity cost.  

Assuming 15 year payoff period, the 2k per month of student debt the kid will have is over $600k after 15 years invested at 7%. So you pay back the $260k and lose the opportunity to have invested that cash. So $800-900k total opportunity cost.  

He basically gets a free call option to try for IB and if successful will be in significantly better financial position the rest of his life. If not, he still has options. Work for a few years somewhere finance or ops then get an MBA and then try again. He could do CFA. Maybe he won't even want to do IB and do something like Asset Management or corporate or something outside of finance altogether. Kid hasn't even taken his first college class yet.

"If you can't handle a little debt you shouldn't be on Wall Street" is totally idiotic. Clearly no focus on the risk side of the equation, only the upside. What if the kid doesn't make it? What if shit comes up in life? The situation may make sense for like Harvard or something but Vandy, Michigan, or UNC vs. OSU come on bro! 

Oct 9, 2021 - 10:00am

If you go debt free to undergrad and don't land the job or want to pursue a different path you have optionality and can afford a mba for another shot. If you go into  200k+ debt, you're heavily constrained
 

Oct 9, 2021 - 10:19am

Was in the same boat. Free sub-par state school vs. expensive semi-targets.

My perspective on the topic: Going to the state school is betting on yourself. The brand doesn't have much value, so it is up to you to have a great experience and learn what/more than you would at a semi-target. That's contrasted by going to the semi-target where the brand alone will carry value, regardless of the ugrad experiences you pursue.

>$200k debt is crippling man. Furthermore, semi-target's don't make you a shoe-in. Trying to pay that debt in any non banking job is going to hurt for a long time. Unless you just fall in love on a visit with another campus/culture, OSU is good enough for banking. You're already on here and ahead of the game. You can make it from there.

My $0.02. Went for full-ride at a worse school than OSU and placed EB.

Oct 9, 2021 - 11:02am

Go OSU 100%. Work your ass off and get a 4.0, get into the investment clubs, join a frat, build your network. Set yourself apart with faculty and connected alum. I did not follow that advice and I'm regretting it with a huge monthly payment. I'm sitting on a desk next to multiple SEC and Big 10 grads who made stand outs of themselves. They have no debt and are living the dream here in the city. I have debt that prevents me from going out and is limiting my networking now that I am here. I worked all through school to pay the bills while they networked and partied. They had money to travel, invest in killer wardrobs, and network all building skills that are serving them now. I am amazed by their people skills for starting out. I have confidence in my skills and my education, but they have swagger. If you don't make it to the big time coming from a nontarget, you have no debt and will still be in position to carve out an enviable life at an average banking job in a second tier city. If you don't make it to the big time from a target (and many of my classmates did not), then you are screwed with massive debt. That average banking job will have you depressed living in your parents' basement. Being at the target did not set everyone up for life like everyone on this site implies. Going to OSU does not guarantee outcome but it gives you a $260,000 head start.   

  • PM in HF - Other
Oct 9, 2021 - 1:01pm

This thread seems to be getting overwhelming responses by people who prefer the state school route. To say you are going to a state school to bet on yourself so get in all the right clubs etc..then say but if you goto a target you wont be in top20% of the class get an offer is laughable. The answer is not this easy.

Both scenarios are betting on yourself, taking out 260k, you are betting on yourself. Going to a state school to be top 5% of the class you are betting on yourself as well.
OP seems like his parents aint going to let him starve and be homeless, just they cannot pay his tuition. 
Know many people who did no debt and others who did tons of debt for undergrad/grad-school for various high paying careers if one is not mature enough to trust themselves. 
But stop comparing the top5% of state school vs the dude whos working big4 audit from a target who got Cs. Not so cut and dry.

Truly school should come down always to where you comfortable and fit in best to succed. If you love the buckeyes or prefer a different environment. Cost should come after.
 

Oct 9, 2021 - 4:28pm

260k is a lot of money to feel comfortable. When you bet on yourself with the Buckeyes, the bet is free. You can wake up in four years and say you have no interest in office work or making money. When you are in 260k of student debt, they will find you and make your life miserable if you decide another path (if that decision is available, these are semi targets where IB is still not probable)

  • Research Analyst in HF - Other
Oct 9, 2021 - 1:42pm

So first off - fuck your parents cuz that's some shitty white person behavior on their part. They make enough money but are willing to have you consider going to a shittier school because of money. The days when people could "pull themselves up by their bootstraps" are by and large gone. If your parents were poor as shit you'd be getting a full ride probably to these better schools, but instead you're left with the worst of both worlds. Rich parents and no aid from them or the school.

I would say take the debt because that's who I would be. I would want to maximize my career chances and I think it would be a worthy investment because I'm committed to staying in high paying jobs, and was at the time in college.

However, let's talk about how you can assuage this debt. Step #1. Emancipate yourself. If your parents aren't giving you enough aid such that

You'll be $260k in debt, then you deserve to be financially independent and get aid. It's not called "expected parental contribution" for nothing.

Step #2. And this is real. I know people who have done this. Find someone in your scenario and get married to them. Your parents income cannot count if you're married and you'll basically get a full ride to these schools. There's a whole WSJ journal article on the practice.

I'm not even sure how it works if you have rich parents who refuse to pay, but isn't that FAFSA essentially for government subsidized loans, so if you don't qualify for any aid under FAFSA - what kind of loans are you even getting? 7% interest from Bank of America?

Step #3. If your parents have to co-sign the loans, which I think is standard idk? , then stick them with the bill. This is scorched earth but you do the math. Are you going to get a big fat inheritance down the line if they refuse to shell out now?

  • Research Analyst in HF - Other
Oct 9, 2021 - 6:48pm

I have no idea what student loan rates are honestly. I looked at my cousins loans once and some of them were 6-8% but they were med school loans so I assume they can get to those levels. I was fortunate enough to "reek of entitlement" and come from a wealthy family who, like normal fucking people, uses it to pay for their children's education.

Your assumption is largely accurate and yes, that is easily extinguishable debt if you go through this path in your 20s. You don't even need to do PE/HF. Staying in banking for 7 years will easily do the trick. These people who tout NYCs living costs and shit - honestly idk if they're budgeting dropping $500 at 1OAK with their buddies twice a week, but it doesn't add up. I've lived it (not the 1OAK shit just normal NYC life) and I see how much I save every year.

As for your other question I see no one from OSU or even semi-targets to be honest in my proximity. They're mostly Harvard, Yale, Whartons. Lot of Wharton's. Stanfords, a few Dukes and Columbia's. Some Dartmouth's.

There may be self selection that's coloring this however, and it's not to say the state schools don't exist in this arena, they're just few and far. I lost an amazing hedge fund job to a kid from Villanova who was EB->MF. For the most part hedge fund people (and buyside in general) are more nerdy. The sellside is where you get to show off your social skills you learned at State schools and crush shots with HF clients at PH-D in S&T or just be overall salesmen taking CEOs to fancy dinners in IBD you'll find more state school kids in senior sellside roles.

EDIT: Just realized you're a PM, I hope you should have a better sense than even myself about the path's lucrativeness and I'm sure your HF circle is much wider!

Oct 9, 2021 - 4:32pm

Don't criticize his parents. College is worthless beyond its being a signaling device for employers. You learn nothing outside of STEM and give a quarter million to zealots to build a new black dorm with a state of the art salt pool and to subsidize sushi chefs in the dining hall. They invested in OP enough that he can consider a free flagship state school education, he'll have all the three somes and drugs he wants there along with a job. It's not bad at all, and unless he was looking at HYPS his parents shouldn't be on the hook for tuition. Georgetown and Vanderbilt really aren't 260k good………...

  • Research Analyst in HF - Other
Oct 9, 2021 - 6:31pm

Who are you Peter Thiel? Sounds like mommy and daddy didn't pay for your education and maybe they should have. Seems like your family is loaded enough. Undergrad at least. Fuck law school, we agree there. Dumb choice. But you seem to be very against any type of student loan debt in general. I agree it's unnecessary and serves to line all the wrong pockets, but that's the system we play in in the US. As long as it exists you gotta play the game.

If the parents have the money which they do if this kid isn't getting any FAFSA. My view is they should pay in most circumstances. Yes this kid isn't Harvard material but still in the long term Georgetown is a better school, and they HAVE the fucking money, that's why this kid is in this predicament in the first place. I want this kid to go to the best school he gets into AND not have to take out $260k in loans if possible. My post is all about getting as close to a win win as possible. But it first acknowledges that the parents are shitty. That's just my view and I guess a few others on here too.

Also yes this is easy to say being someone in my late 20s now having been in finance for 7-8 years, but $260k is just not that much money IF YOU SUCCESSFULLY BET ON YOURSELF. Yes it's a big responsibility for an 18 year old to handle and a big decision to make, but that's life. His parent's are forcing him to make this choice. There's nothing wrong with the OSU route apparently from people who are more familiar than I with the path to banking from a non-target, but it still comes with a drawback otherwise we wouldn't be having this conversation. Best everyone can do is just outline the risks and rewards of each option and let the kid make an informed decision without letting personal biases get in the way.

My personal bias is that clearly the parents are dicks and should pay. I went to HYPS and would've been livid if my parents didn't pay and forced me to get zero aid due to their income. I'm grateful for them and see the value and will pass it on (so essentially still paying for 1-2 tuitions at some point in my life). Would I have still chosen HYPS vs. a free ride at my local state school if I had to take student loans? Definitely - because I wasn't going to risk ending up in a $65k job not knowing wtf the recruiting process was like from a non-target and likelihood of actually getting into a legit job. And 12 years ago I don't think schools were as accepting of non-targets.

Your personal bias seems to be the reality that shit can go off piste and the best laid plans can go majorly awry. Idk what made you go to law school and what career you gave up for it, or if you finally got that job real estate (I really hope you did find a seat you're happy with). But that's a valuable perspective - that this kid could take $260k debt on and then not get into IB and be unemployed or some shit. But presenting it in an unbiased balanced way is important I think.

Oct 9, 2021 - 4:37pm

hype2millennium

A question for all: at what price point does a semitarget become a better option that going to a nontarget for free? To help the OP, what assumptions do you need to make the analysis?

Assume you do not get IB from a semi-target (most won't) and you make 65k out of college in NYC. Subtract taxes, rent with roommates (given prevailing rent in new grad neighborhoods), living expenses, health insurance, and 5% for miscellaneous costs that cannot be predicted. Then calculate how much debt you can take on that would be paid over eight years with that remaining number. You would be debt free by 30. This is a conservative estimate. Many will pay it off earlier, some will lose their job or have financial problems. All student debt is awful. 

Oct 9, 2021 - 5:47pm

You are a high school kid and don't even truly know what banking is or if you would like the work/lifestyle. Hell, you dont even know the value of a dollar yet - and that isn't an insult. It's just impossible to understand the burden of debt until you have a full time job, have to support your life, pay off debt over years, while watching friends save/invest money and get houses, nicer cars, married, etc. Ohio State is a damn solid university with a humongous alumni pool - the difference between it and Vanderbilt / Georgetown isn't a massive as you think - and isnt REMOTELY worth the difference in money.

Trust me, take the free ride here and bust your ass networking (again, OSU has a massive alumni network), getting involved, good grades, and internships. You will be in a fine place. Very rarely with decisions like these is one side clearly right but in this case anyone telling you to forgo the free ride for a 250k in debt and a semi-target deserves all the monkey shit in the world

Oct 9, 2021 - 6:04pm

Any advice to take the debt is either intentionally malicious or comically uninformed. Even worse - blaming the parents for not wanting to fork over a quarter million so their kid can go to Vandy? Just reeks of entitlement.

And again, this kid is in high school. There is a graveyard of future bankers, lawyers, and doctors who get 2-3 years into school and realize it's not for them for whatever reason. Difference being you have that realization and you are six figures in debt you are now a slave. Working a high paying job is a privilege that can be hell on earth if you need to work it (to pay off debt, alimony, your ski home, etc.). OP if you want to be in banking you will be in banking even if you go to Miami/OSU.

Oct 9, 2021 - 9:01pm

I very easily paid off ~$100k of student loans before I turned 26. I graduated and went directly to the buyside, so overall comp was probably slightly lower than my IB peers for the first two years as well.

I also had a lot of scholarship money which made my education possible, and had some considerable scholarships from a couple of names on your list. Have you received your acceptance letters from all of these places yet? My merit scholarships were presented to me in the acceptance packages - so you may have some more optionality than you think.

Michigan / Georgetown / Vanderbilt will give you a significant leg up over Ohio State - that's just the reality.

Oct 9, 2021 - 9:32pm

Except for a few buckeyes (who know more than me on their school's placement), most of us have said Vanderbilt/Georgetown/Michigan give a substantial leg up over OSU. It's great you paid off 100k in the timeframe. The interest on 260k, however, is a totally different beast. That is before considering the principal difference. Attorneys starting at 180k a year struggle with that debt load and they are in their late 20s/early 30s, in other words far more disciplined and mature generally than a recent graduate. 

Oct 9, 2021 - 9:41pm

Whether counterintuitive or not, the comp structure within our industry made it a hell of a lot easier for me to pay down debt / save. $180k salary with minimal bonus is a lot different than someone making a $100k salary + $80k annual bonus (just using those numbers for comparison). The latter individual will live a lifestyle within their $100k salary while the former will often live a lifestyle befitting of a $180k salary. Again, this is from personal experience - but it made it pretty easy for me to just dump my bonus into my debts until they were paid off

Oct 10, 2021 - 9:44am

Absolutely do not take on 260k in debt.

1. This amount will cripple you. Within 10 years of graduating college you will likely want to do some combination of get married, buy a house, have a kid, or go to grad school. This debt will make each of those things a lot harder to do. I'm in my mid-30s and believe me this debt WILL set you back in those other areas of your life, and those other areas of your life are probably much more correlated with your long term happiness than your post-grad job.

2. When you're 18 it's easy to look at this through rose colored glasses and assume you'll pay it all back quickly. Well, maybe you will and maybe you won't. The truth is that you're 18 and you don't really know what you want to do with yourself, you just have some ideas. You might get an IB internship and realize you hate it or be exposed to something else in college that you want to pursue instead. You don't want to be sitting around 4 years from now in a life changing amount of debt due to some delusion you had when you were a child--the risk of being in that situation is significantly greater than 0%.

3. You're basically placing a bet that, by taking on this debt, you'll get the dream job, you'll like it, you'll stick around, and that going to GTown or whatever will give you advantages that OSU wouldn't. You're sitting down to play poker and the table stakes are 260k. Do you really think that the lift you'll get from a more prestigious school is worth the risk? I don't. I've seen too many kids from non-prestigious schools do well to think that school brand matters as much as I thought it did when I was 18. The cream tends to find a way to rise to the top.

4. If you're 18 and already posting on WSO then that leads me to believe that you're pretty damn motivated and on the ball. You have another poster here telling you that kids from OSU get good finance jobs if they play their cards right. There's no reason why you can't be one of them.

  • 7
Oct 10, 2021 - 9:48am

It's a pain in the ass you have to say "You're basically placing a bet that, by taking on this debt, you'll get the dream job, you'll like it, you'll stick around, and that going to GTown or whatever will give you advantages that OSU wouldn't" after 139 posts on this topic all because some clowns keep telling an 18 year old to take out 260k in loans that cannot be discharged. It is incredible how persistent they are in telling an internet stranger to throw it all away for….wait for it….. Georgetown. 

Oct 10, 2021 - 9:56am

Yeah, it's not an either/or decision when it comes to getting IB or not from either school.

You can re-phrase the OP's question to be "Is the higher probability of getting an IB job out of Vandy/GTown with 260k debt worth it compared to OSU for free?" 

If you're being honest with yourself and you set up some Excel model and played around with inputs on pro-forma 5-year post college income trajectory, probabilities of getting IB out of OSU vs. GTown, probabilities of actually even wanting to stay in IB after interning in it, etc.--I can't imagine you'd have many situations where this debt makes sense.

  • 2
Oct 10, 2021 - 11:17am

Crypto Jones

Go for free obv. Why is this even a decision. Anyone can make it into IB if you prep correctly in 2021, target school matters very little in today's day and age.

It's a decision because idiots keep telling him 260k is no big deal and he'll crush it so hard as an analyst he'll pay it off quickly. 

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Oct 10, 2021 - 11:14am

I was in a similar situation to you, I ended up taking the state school route but part of me wishes that I went to Georgetown (was recruited to play sport), but I am really happy where I am now but I would ask a few questions

Where do kids place out of school?

How are the investment banking clubs?

How is the schools student fund?

What can I study? (Double Major programs for Econ/finance or finance/accounting)

Oct 11, 2021 - 10:57am

If you're depending even one iota on a school's career services department you're already behind and probably ngmi. Those people are in those school jobs for a reason, because they are generally inept at most other things that could earn them more $. At least this has been my experience (I have several degrees of various levels) with just about every (middle of the road and elite) schools that I have attended in my time.

Clubs/student funds are whatever. Double major question is a good one. Study more than econ and finance. CFA level 1 is basically an entire undergrad finance degree in one fairly easy test.

Oct 10, 2021 - 12:43pm

Literally the top 25 students at any state school = top 25 at Princeton / Yale/ etc

As someone who has gone from bottom tier state school to lowest tier ib to mf, it's really doable and honestly if you're smart and work hard and aren't an asshole it's very plausible to achieve your goal from schools much worse than Ohio state (which is a great school, no offense but anyone on here trashing it is an elitist Dick). Never take out 250k in loans when you have a great education being handed to you for FREE.

Have fun in college and develop social skills (which matter more than a lot else). If you work hard and network i will promise you you'll break into ib if you want and if you don't want to, you'll break into whatever else your goals are

  • VP in PE - LBOs
Oct 13, 2021 - 6:52pm

Not top 25 at Princeton/Yale, because then you literally go into olympiad winners and freak geniuses. But top 5% or 10% of Princeton and Yale? Definitely agree with you.

Oct 10, 2021 - 12:46pm

Hey man - seems like you're in a bit of a pickle choosing schools. Not sure if you made a decision yet, but here's what I would do.

First thing I would do is to really contemplate and figure out if investment banking is really what I want to do. If not, go to OSU. It's not worth the debt.

However, if IB is your goal then definitely go to GTown (or Michigan). Both are solid schools.

I recently graduated from Georgetown, got my MSF degree there. It definitely helped me getting a ton of IB interviews and landing an analyst position.

Georgetown's undergrad is stronger than the MSF program and has better placement.

I originally went to a non-target school (LeMoyne) for pre-med and switch to finance last second. It was extremely hard to get IB firms to notice me. But when I got into GTown, I was getting more interviews in my first semester there than I did my whole 4 years at LeMoyne.

If you are really passionate about finance/IB, then Georgetown is the better choice. I would definitely try to apply to as many scholarships as possible.

And if you do go there and found out finance isn't for you, then you can always transfer to OSU.

Hope this helps.

Oct 10, 2021 - 2:16pm

mal381

Hey man - seems like you're in a bit of a pickle choosing schools. Not sure if you made a decision yet, but here's what I would do.

First thing I would do is to really contemplate and figure out if investment banking is really what I want to do. If not, go to OSU. It's not worth the debt.

However, if IB is your goal then definitely go to GTown (or Michigan). Both are solid schools.

I recently graduated from Georgetown, got my MSF degree there. It definitely helped me getting a ton of IB interviews and landing an analyst position.

Georgetown's undergrad is stronger than the MSF program and has better placement.

I originally went to a non-target school (LeMoyne) for pre-med and switch to finance last second. It was extremely hard to get IB firms to notice me. But when I got into GTown, I was getting more interviews in my first semester there than I did my whole 4 years at LeMoyne.

If you are really passionate about finance/IB, then Georgetown is the better choice. I would definitely try to apply to as many scholarships as possible.

And if you do go there and found out finance isn't for you, then you can always transfer to OSU.

Hope this helps.

Can you give OP some fake tasks or assignments to see if IB is for him? A bit better than contemplating that sweet check. 
 

I had to look up what LeMoyne is. OSU is in a whole different category, this is really not an apples to apples comparison at all. If he transferred to OSU he may or may not have that full scholarship, and he'd still be in debt for that stupid freshman year at Georgetown. The question isn't if Georgetown is better than OSU reputation wise. It is whether it is worth 260k of debt you cannot unload unless you move to Bali and evade Indonesian immigration authorities. 

Oct 10, 2021 - 4:25pm

Bali sounds like a solid move.

Lmao Lemoyne is definitely not comparable to OSU. OSU is better school for sure.

Wasn't trying to compare, just stating my background and how GTown helped me getting my foot in the door.

I will admit that the tuition is ridiculous, but if I got a scholarship there I would most likely do that.

He/she could do a year at OSU and try to get a full-ride or a solid scholarship to GTown (or getting into a better school)

From reading all these comments, it seems like you have a decent shoot getting into IB if you go to OSU.

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Oct 10, 2021 - 3:08pm

Honestly, anyone who tells you to get $260k in loans is a dumb f*ck, especially when you have free options. Fisher Futures has a very high placement rate and is not absurdly selective. They also have a MASSIVE alumni network that is very committed to helping out. You don't even have to take my word for it. Do a LinkedIn search for OSU alumni in NYC that work at BBs. Not to mention, you'll have way more fun at OSU than any of those other schools you listed. 

Also, most of the BBs are casting a wider recruiting net these days. Almost half of my analyst class is from non-target schools. I imagine the % will be even larger by the time you graduate. 

Will you have to hustle a bit more than target school kids? Yes. Will you have to do $250k worth of additional hustling? No fucking way. 

I don't comment on here much anymore, but you've received such shitty advice from other posters that I just couldn't help myself. I broke into a BB from a (albeit non-OSU) Ohio college, so I think I know what im talking about.

Oct 10, 2021 - 10:03pm

It is astounding that not only are there mouthbreathers in this threat saying take the debt but also getting pats on the back for it.

You are ashtoningly dumb to say take the debt in this situation. The OP gets a pass because he's naive/18. But if you are post college and recommending that to someone then you deserve a swift kick in the balls

Oct 10, 2021 - 7:09pm

Take the free ride, study hard, join the finance clubs on campus, network, gun hard for internships and you will be fine. Take some of the $260k you save to make a few trips to NYC and Chicago to network with OSU alumni sophomore/junior year or somewhere at the school will probably offer those trips already. If you still don't make it right after graduating you can get an MBA, work a few years in ops and try to lateral or get MBA, pursue CFA, keep networking. 

Taking $260k in debt is dumb and the schools you mentioned are marginally better maybe. That debt will be a huge hinderance on your live post graduating. Why take it if you don't have to? 

Hustle! Hustle! Hustle! If you want it bad enough, you will be fine.  

-Someone who went to a more non-target state school than OSU 

Oct 10, 2021 - 9:25pm

Had a similar situation. Ended up going with the state school. Sometimes I do regret it considering I could handle the debt load with my current/expected income, but I know that if I had taken the 200k+ loans it would keep me up at night. You'd probably have to take private loans which start accruing interest while you're still in school, which would add up before you can even think about paying anything back. It would have been nice to have the big name school on my side, but I got a job that I wanted it just took a bit more work on networking. Up to you, but I think that osu in no way ruins your chances at the jobs you want.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 10, 2021 - 9:59pm

OSU for free - try to get into honors or any other finance workshops they have - strong target for Cleveland banking anyhow for a way into the industry(for free again).

Will take a bit more networkjng, bit more proactiveness on your end, along with strong stats and ECs prior to junior year if you want to go to NYC for ex, but if you're already set on breaking into the industry this early, I don't think you'll have a problem if you stay committed. Maybe those other kids will do 50 less phone calls than you, send 100 less emails, do a couple less interviews before bagging an offer but that convenience is costing them 200-260k. The grit and tenacity you'll develop is worth something as well.

Good luck

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Oct 10, 2021 - 10:12pm

I'll give my two cents. Was in the exact same spot as you as a senior in HS. I asked the same question but still elected to take the debt at a east coast school with a more reputable name (still a semi-target). I took on around 100k and I regret it. Halfway through college, I realized IB was not for me and tbh I wanted to pursue something outside of finance. However knowing I had all that debt made it clear I had no option as it would help pay the debt off the quickest. I stuck with it, got a very well paying IB job and recently started this summer. I'm just a new first-year so maybe it's just the transition to the field, but life is hell. I feel like a slave because I'm always on call for work and work waytoo much and the worst part is I know I can't quit because of that debt. Also seeing people start businesses and take those risks made me sad because I knew I never could do that until I pay off this debt.

Debt/leverage is good for businesses but not for individuals IMO because it takes away our freedom. Glad I learned that lesson though...will grind it out til bonus season then get the fuck out.

If I were you I'd actually network with people at the schools you got into that cost a lot of money. Pose this question in your networking call. It's genuinely intriguing and will actually make you stand out on the phone as it is a very legitimate question. See their advice and make a decision. Even if you don't choose their target schools and you stick with OSU, I highly doubt the alumni from the targets wouldn' understand. Then you also have made a genuine connection that you can keep in touch with thru your four years. It's not OCR but you'd have the target school network going in without paying the price of the school.

Oct 10, 2021 - 10:39pm

Thanks for a candid take, a lot of people in your shoes (there are many, and there are many, many more with higher debt loads and far worse jobs) are too embarrassed to write out how they feel about their decision to take on student loans. OP should consider this and make it 260k 

Oct 11, 2021 - 3:25am

Agree with you on this, I also went to what is basically a semi-target and took on 6 figures of debt. Would I do it again? I don't think I would, as hard as it is for me to say that.

Going to that school gave me some major advantages in terms of recruiting, plus I got a fantastic education with small class sizes, and I was surrounded by a very smart group of kids. I've also never felt remotely insecure or "outgunned" regarding my education, even when with a group of folks who went to top ivies (perhaps that's vain of me but I've noticed some people get insecure and defensive when they say where they want to school; I've never felt like that). On the downside, even as a freshman, I felt like I had this weight on my back that was the debt I'd have to pay back and it certainly restricted my options. I do wish that I had someone sit down with me and very coolly and analytically explain the tradeoffs associated with that much debt at a young age. As an ambitious 17/18 year old it was too easy to think I had to go to the best school possible.

  • 2
  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
Oct 10, 2021 - 11:37pm

Do not take out the loans. Full stop.

There is a path to IB from OSU and it's not 260k more difficult than it would be from GTown, etc.

You could very easily screw yourself for the first half of your life with that loan - say you i) don't break into IB or, worse, ii) break in and hate it. You're stuck. 

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 11, 2021 - 12:20am

Go to OSU, have a hell of a social life, and place just as well as you would via the other schools given the strength of the Futures program. Top Futures students regularly place at their bank(s) of choice - all it takes is a strong work ethic to take advantage of the ample resources the program provides (alumni relationships / technical training / a dedicated course during the spring of sophomore year taught by seniors who will be going full time on the Street).

Thank yourself later on for making this decision - and actually (over)enjoy your 4 years of college.

Oct 12, 2021 - 9:10pm

This is great to read, I'm transferring to OSU, I'm at a non-target right now and I'm transferring for the spring 2022 semester. College experience isn't what I expected or enjoy at my current school that's why I'm making the switch to OSU. Seeing this comment supports my whole thesis for moving to OSU, thanks for the insight

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Oct 11, 2021 - 1:41am

I went to a Gtown/Berkeley/Michigan-tier school and had to pay ~20k each year out-of-pocket to afford tuition and rent (no help from parents either so I worked 2-4 part-time jobs simultaneously thru college). Currently working at a top BB coverage group.

If you have to work two or more part-time jobs to cover traditional costs and still end up coming out with 100k+ of debt, attending a semi-target is simply not worth the stress during college and post-undergrad quality-of-life compromises. Instead, I'd go to a state school for free and spend the extra free time I have getting hyper-involved in student org, building relevant experience (competions, internships, etc.) and actively networking with alums from the start. If you feel concerned that having a non-target brand will hinder your development relative to having a semi-target brand on your resume, I'd consider applying for a top-tier MFin program at a target (ideally matriculating after graduating from your state school in 3 years). Your entry-level FT recruiting opportunities open up substantially and you only take on school 1 year's worth of debt. Way more manageable and comparable result if you trust that you'll put 100% in.

Outside of all of this, there's still the fact that you might end up not liking IB as you gain more perspective during college. This uncertainty alone makes 260k of debt not worthwhile. Very few career paths are as prestige-focused as IB, so if you do end up pursuing something else, you'll likely face less headwinds from the identity of your undergrad institution.

Best of luck, man. Keep taking initiative and you'll do great.

Oct 11, 2021 - 9:51am

I personally think OSU would be a great choice considering you will not be taking on any student loan debt. Also, OSU's alumni network within IB and PE have grown over the past few years.

OSU has an IB club called "Fisher Futures" and they have a freshman investment banking prep program.

Hope this helps.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 12, 2021 - 3:02pm

If you ever plan on being rich I don't know why you wouldn't just take on the debt now and get the brand name. 260k is nothing in the long term.

I'd rather be a Georgetown grad with 10 mil than an OSU / Penn State grad with 10.26 mil.

Not to mention the Georgetown brand and network is more likely going to yield you a better return on the college tuition investment than a PSU/OSU degree

Btw I came from a non-target and made it to BB. But I got extremely fucking lucky and this idea that you can "grind" your way into a BB is bullshit. There's more qualified people than positions so any non-target (or anyone) who breaks in had an element of luck.

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Oct 12, 2021 - 5:36pm

Ever heard of interest? By the time you amass 10mil worth of wealth you are going to owe a lot more than 260k in debt. Also you can virtually throw a future MBA out the door at that point- at the very least it would be extremely discouraging for someone still paying off that much debt to take on another 200k+ debt. I mean fuck it at that point why not just go to medical school. It's easy for you to tell someone to take on 260k debt when you probably have no debt, but I would bet that in his shoes you would choose osu for free instead of all that debt. Imagine how much stress that would add to your daily life. Would at least make me think twice or feel guilty about going out and spending money when I'm that deep under. 

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Oct 13, 2021 - 10:35am

Paying off 260k+ hella interest plus the lost return on saving or investing that money is way more than 260k. On top of that, how many people in ib do you think actually end up ever getting to 10 Mil? Way fewer than you would think. Anyone suggesting he take this debt on is delusional

Oct 13, 2021 - 12:19pm

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Oct 12, 2021 - 6:58pm

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Oct 13, 2021 - 12:31am

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