ADVICE FOR STUDENTS NOT AT A TOP FEEDER SCHOOL
If you’re looking to join the ranks of the consulting elite, knowing which schools firms like to target is valuable information. But what about for students already enrolled in a school not on those top feeder lists?
Curtis says that the more prestigious the firm, the harder it will be to get that first interview.
“McKinsey, for example, is going to be a lot harder in terms of the resume filter,” he tells Poets&Quants. “So, if you don’t go to a top school, your GPA is going to need to be really high, and you’re going to have to be really sharp in the interviews.” (Heads up, those interviews can also be notoriously grueling, so do your homework.)
“Consulting is one of those fields where you can practice and get really good at the interview process. If you don’t prepare, however, you’re probably going to get blown out of the water.”
Curtis often tells aspiring consultants that it’s hard to get one of these jobs even at a target school, and particularly an MBB job. At a non-target school, it’s a little bit like swimming upstream, but it doesn’t mean you can’t get there.
“You have to make genuine connections with people who work in the industry, even if it’s just a few alumni. Reach out to them, have a phone conversation, follow up with them,” he says.
Finally, don’t despair if the MBBs don’t come knocking. All is not lost.
“There are some great other firms out there: Oliver Wyman, for example, or LEK which is a little bit smaller and has a good reputation … MBB is still where everyone wants to be, but the Deloittes of the world, the PwCs, all have great practices and can provide a great career in consulting. I would tell candidates that all is not lost if they don’t fit into an MBB. They can still build a great career.”
TOP 25 FEEDER SCHOOLS FOR A CONSULTING JOB
The chart below shows the top 25 feeder schools to the 10 consulting firms with the higher number of recruits in the past year. See WSO’s full report for more detail at all 57 consulting firms. Click to the next page to see a list of the top 50 feeder schools.
Next Page: Feeder Schools for Top Consulting Firms, No. 26-50