SA vs FT Dilemma

blueshade's picture
Rank: Chimp | 10

As a long-time lurker, I cannot emphasis how great this site has been in helping me land interviews and offers. That being said, I am in a very fortunate yet unfortunate position and would like everyone's opinion on what I should do.

I am a non-target senior looking to break into private equity long term (had the chance to work at a PE shop a while ago and the experience was very positive). That being said, I was unable to lock in any FT IBD offers this fall - the only FT offer I got was with a MM bank doing ER. Seeing as how I want to do "transaction" oriented work, I decided to look at SA IBD opportunities and extend graduation by a year. Luckily, I have offers from several BBs.

While I am ecstatic to have BB SA offers, I am hesitant to reneg on a full-time job and pay for an extra year of school. But considering my long-term goal of private equity, giving up the FT ER gig in hopes to get a FT IBD gig seems reasonable. My only concern is that I really don't have any use of graduating a year late, not to mention the financial strain that an extra year of school will cause. With all that said, would it be possible to jump from the SA gig to FT without waiting an entire year? Or would it look bad if I spent the entire year traveling and doing volunteer work before getting my degree "on time"? There are so many options that I am a bit overwhelmed. your input/opinion is appreciated!

Comments (9)

Dec 15, 2014

Wait, does this firm know you will already have your degree? If so, I'd negotiate to finish the summer and if you get a FT offer, join right after the internship. If you can't do that, you could join in the winter, I know someone joining BB IBD in feb after their SA stint and a semester of school.

Dec 15, 2014

All of the BBs I got offers from are under the impression that I am graduating in May of 2016 because I am taking an extra year of school. With that said, I would prefer to graduate on time (May 2015) or just a semester later (December 2015).

Could you elaborate on how that person approached HR/group about starting early?

Dec 15, 2014

Take the MM offer. You can work for a year and lateral over to a BB. You have a massive opportunity cost if you turn down that FT offer.

Dec 15, 2014

I know a couple people who delayed graduation by one semester to qualify for SA recruiting again. They received full-time return offers and will be starting in the summer at the same time as the rest of their class. You effectively get a semester off. Most are traveling / taking GMAT / etc. Nothing wrong with it. But reneging on your current offer is a different issue that I don't have a strong opinion on either way - may want to consult with close acquaintances of yours in IB about any potential backlash, if at all. Shouldn't be a huge issue.

Dec 15, 2014

I forgot to mention that the FT ER gig is in a small city while the BB SA offers are all in NYC. Having experienced the downfalls of not living in a big city like NYC for job-hunting (both FT and SA), I have a preference to live in NY. It is so much easier to network with people in NY than it is other places.

Dec 15, 2014

take BB SA. get offer. graduate in December and if $ in an issue work in Spring. zero question.

"Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be"

Dec 15, 2014

100% take IB offer - graduate a semester "early" (ie Fall 2015) and have a fucking ball for 6 months before starting work full-time.

Feb 24, 2015

Thanks guys - I accepted the BB SA offer. After speaking with both HR and one of my networking contacts, an early January start is possible but not guaranteed. The only real issue/question at this point is "what do I do from the end of my internship till end of December?" I have everything to graduate now so what do I really do?

I could take another semester of school but school tuition is such a pain in the butt, especially if I already secured a full-time job. It's not like I'll learn anything significant in the last semester to make a big difference when I start full time (mind you I am a liberal arts student). So I have a few options and would like you opinion on each of them..

1) take full semester at Uni (most expensive and time consuming option)
2) take 2-3 courses through a local university/community college/online course (staying at my parents' place to save $$$)
3) taking the entire semester off and devote time to volunteer work (either domestically or abroad)
4) say fk it and don't do jack till December, get degree, and start in January

What are your thoughts? I don't want HR to get my transcript and raise any eyebrows to the point where they will rescind their full-time offer.

Feb 24, 2015