Investment Banking Job with Msc from second rate university


I am taking a masters in finance from a poorly rated university. Does this put me on par with Bsc graduates from top ranked universities? Or do I still have a poor chance of getting accepted?
Thank you


It’s not the uni that matters so much as your grades. A top grade is always more impressive than a mid to low one, no matter where its from… well, for most recruiters anyhow.

Where did you do your Ba/BSc?


Thanks for replying. I did my BA in a US institute.
I am concerned bc Based on research posted on this site 90% of graduates recruited are from a select few universities.


10 - 20 years ago companies would be much more specific about the “type” of universities they recruited from. Nowadays, employers are becoming much more aware that the “best” candidates can come from anywhere, and in fact candidates from [[Russell Group]] universities (known as the best universities in the UK) may not in fact be the “best” employees at all.

A lot of companies have started actively recruiting from lower tier universities (e.g. [[Allen & Overy]] who are a [[magic circle]] law firm) because they believe the talent there is equal to the talent anywhere else. There is something of a competition between the large employers for good graduate candidates (you are in demand) and so companies are generally willing to recruit from anywhere, if the candidate is good enough.

However, although this is true of almost every industry, including even [[accountancy & professional services|accounting]] and [[law]] there is still a precedent for [[management consulting|consulting]] firms and [[investment banking|investment banks]] to recruit mainly oxbridge or [[Russell Group]] graduates (statistics show 90% plus are from these universities). So if you want to get in to an investment bank you may struggle compared to an oxbridge graduate.

This is changing though… slowly… and it is definitely worth making applications to investment banks, particularly if your academics are strong and you have experience working in the industry/[[internships|internship]].

Hope this helps. Good luck…feel free to ask anything else.


Thanks for the insight!
I am aware that that i will experience difficulty breaking into the field as I’m not coming through the traditional route. How important are A-level’s when one is educated to postgrad level? Relevant?


Relevant, but not as much so as if you just had a Ba/BSc. The most recent academic qualfication you have done is always the most important (so for you - Masters) the rest get less important with age.

Investment banks are looking for evidence of strong academic grades throughout your lifetime though, so if you have good A Levels, it helps!


One of the reasons firms recruit 90% from what is primarily the [[russell group]] of universities isbecause this where they target their marketing with campus events and the like. Generally they don’t bother at new/non [[russell group]] universities because it isn’t worth their while. However, they will gladly recruit you if you have the grades, and the university will have relatively little bearing on your application.


Don’t get discouraged by your school. I went to a school in the UK which is way outside the Russell group and still managed to get a graduate role (in 2005) at the trading desk of one of the best houses around. Having said that there are roles for which you would be disadvantaged. Say, consultants or i-bankers love bragging to their clients how many of their employees are from Oxbridge. Sales, trading, structuring type roles are usually much more meritocratic and therefore recruiters would not be bothered if you come from non-target school.