PE Recruiting with a sub 3.5 GPA

I am about to graduate and start full time with the goal of transitioning into PE after my two years. Going through my last couple of years in college my GPA took a dip. Im wondering how this will effect my PE recruiting if I'm targeting firms in the middle market. Does anyone have experience recruiting in PE with a low GPA? Would love to hear.

Comments (4)

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  • Principal in PE - LBOs
Jan 14, 2022 - 2:45pm

Depends on a few things.

1/ less than 3.5 could be 3.4 or 3.1… very big difference

2/ 3.4 from decent schools (Yale/Penn/UMich/etc) very different than a 3.4 from SUNY Oneonta

3/ depends what your banking program looks like. A competitive banking gig, to some degree, cures lackluster gpa. GS FIG or Evercore banking, you won't have much to worry about. SunTrust Atlanta, Credit Agricole, HSBC, or some boutique bank launched by an ex-PNC banker, going to be a bit tougher.

It depends on a lot of factors. Regardless, you'll have to have a good story about why your gpa wasn't stellar. The candidate pool is large and competitive enough where there will be dozens of people that look exactly like you, same or better UG school, same or better banking experience, AND far better GPA. Interviewing candidates is a game in information asymmetry. It helps to see a multitude of datapoints that indicate you excel at everything you do. So you'll need to have a story and shine in other areas where 'better' candidates fall short.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jan 14, 2022 - 3:59pm

Hey not OP but does having unique experience founding a startup and having a 7 figure exit matter at all for PE recruiting?

Current analyst at a top group but a 3.6 GPA due to working on startup Freshman year. 3.95 GPA after freshman year. Semi-Target school.

  • Principal in PE - LBOs
Jan 14, 2022 - 4:09pm

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