Certainly, GPA can be one of the most crucial aspects of a resume and you can certainly spark some interest with great grades. But does it really matter? After talking to many recruiters about this topic, an overwhelming number are in agreement that GPA does matter, but only to an extent. Firms set cut-offs, for example at a 3.5, but once you hit that threshold, they don't care whether it is a 3.51 or a 4.0. Furthermore, many have stated that grades will get you in the door, but experience and knowledge is the only thing that matters from that point on.
Hearing this time after time, I continue to wonder if this is actually the case and whether or not the same rule of thumb applies within the entire financial world or is more prevalent in some sectors. In my personal opinion a 4.0 is a measure of extreme dedication and outstanding academic success, but is that how it is viewed in practice?
To those out there who have professional experience: What was the most impressive resume that came across your desk and what about it was so exceptional?
Nonetheless, I would like to open this discussion up for opinions regarding an absolute threshold for GPA (if it exists or not) and some feelings toward the importance of GPA vs. internships and work experience for college students seeking full time positions.
Questions to consider:
- Do firms set different cut-offs depending on target vs. semi-target vs. non-targets?
- What are some of the common cut-offs for IB, , CRE, etc.?