Banking. Money. Investing. You got that killer instinct; you know what to do and when to do it. If investment banking is your ultimate goal, then Stern is your best bet.

How to Demonstrate Your 'Fit' for

New York University (Stern)

With a location in central Manhattan, it’s no surprise that Stern attracts a lot of wannabe investment bankers.  In past years, as many as 40% of students sought careers in NYC’s investment banking scene, and Stern has a very strong alumni network in the investment banking field.  And although Stern is strong in teaching all areas of business, its finance department is known to be a level above – both above the finance departments of other schools and above the quality of its other academic departments.  Recently, aware of that reputation, Stern has taken steps to boost the reputation of its other departments, with hopes of shaking the reputation of “a finance school” only.

Despite its strength in finance, which is typically considered to be a more “cutthroat” industry, Stern does pride itself on offering a strong spirit of teamwork and community, and seeks students who have a strong collaborative nature.  Strong team players, Stern believes, have high levels of emotional intelligence, so articulating your emotional intelligence in your application – as a privy toward your teamwork skills – will resonate well.  Consistent with that theme, Stern students are expected to be very active on campus.

Academically, Stern students have the option of pursuing either a “General Management” MBA or focus in an array of up to three academic disciplines, including finance, strategy, product management, and even entertainment.  It also prides itself on its Berkley Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, its primary channel for students to immerse themselves in entrepreneurship studies while attending school.  The Berkley Center offers conferences and vibrant mentoring program for entrepreneurs and hosts an annual business competition for students.

Stern boasts its adjunct professors, many of whom are veterans of NYC’s business scene.  The school prides the exposure it provides its students to real-world applications, and a big part of this is the opportunity it provides students to learn directly from these established business leaders.

Showing why you want to go to Stern – especially if you intend to go into finance - is important.  With other finance-strong programs nearby or within a short drive of their campus (Columbia, Wharton, and MIT, to name a through), Sloan wants to be convinced that you’re genuinely interested in their program.  It typically asks what interactions you’ve had with the Stern community, so be sure to interact with students and/or faculty prior to applying (which you should ideally do with any school, but Stern specifically asks about it).  If you can answer that question well, and show specific steps you’ve taken to get to know the program before you apply, your chances of success in the admissions process will increase significantly.

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