Can I become an Investment Banker by studying Chemical Engineering?

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AnharM
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Hi guys,

Just to give you an insight of my situation, I've finished my A-Levels and achieved AABa. A's in Maths, Chemistry and AS Further Maths, and a B in Biology. I'm going to retake a few of my Maths modules and Biology modules and take my Further Maths A-Level to achieve A*AAA (A* in Maths).

Anyways, that's not important. I want to become an Investment Banker, so people have been telling me to do a Mathematics or an Economics degree. Pure Mathematics looks horrible to me, so I ruled Mathematics out. I haven't studied Economics at A-Level, so I don't know if I would like studying it at degree level. :/

My teacher has told me to look at Chemical Engineering because I'm particularly good at Chemistry, and I have a really good science background. Most importantly, I enjoy studying sciences. I'm just worried that if I do a Chemical Engineering degree, I wouldn't be the best candidate to apply for Investment Banks.

In case you ask, I'm thinking of applying to UCL and Imperial for Chemical Engineering, as well as Uni of Manchester maybe? I haven't decided yet, but I will be applying to top universities. My GCSE's aren't the best, so I'm not sure if I will get offers from UCL and Imperial :/

I would just like advice on what course I should study at university. I've also looked at studying Statistics at university, and joint degrees, such as Economics and Statistics at UCL.

Any advice would be appreciated.
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NB_ide
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It will be fine, engineering subjects are a decent route into banking. Just make sure you get some internships/placements in banks during the summer, always be thinking about your ultimate goal and that chem eng. is just to get you there.
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AnharM
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(Original post by NB_ide)
It will be fine, engineering subjects are a decent route into banking. Just make sure you get some internships/placements in banks during the summer, always be thinking about your ultimate goal and that chem eng. is just to get you there.
Thanks for the reply. I really appreciate it.

I've heard that Chemical Engineering has a lot of Mathematics and Physics in it, but universities don't require Physics A-Level for the course. I'm comfortable with Maths, not too sure about Physics. :/
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pleasedtobeatyou
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After going to several unis for engineering open days, the impression I've gained is that the engineering -> IB route is more likely for engineering branches which have greater mathematical content e.g mechanical, aeronautical, civil rather than chemical, electrical, etc
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ElChapo
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(Original post by pleasedtobeatyou)
After going to several unis for engineering open days, the impression I've gained is that the engineering -> IB route is more likely for engineering branches which have greater mathematical content e.g mechanical, aeronautical, civil rather than chemical, electrical, etc
Chemical has a lot of maths, and open days aren't reliable sources of information, universities are just selling themselves
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Lunch_Box
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Entirely possible
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rickfloss
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why make it harder for yourself

i dont get it

how will you show interest

how will you set yourself apart from those who have studied directly relevant degrees?

Dont make it harder for yourself
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electriic_ink
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(Original post by rickfloss)
why make it harder for yourself

i dont get it

how will you show interest

how will you set yourself apart from those who have studied directly relevant degrees?

Dont make it harder for yourself
You need to do some reading up on how graduate recruitment works. If he's thinking about IB now, there's plenty of time to demonstrate motivation.
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rickfloss
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(Original post by electriic_ink)
You need to do some reading up on how graduate recruitment works. If he's thinking about IB now, there's plenty of time to demonstrate motivation.
ok, unless you are a investment banker or know someone in HR, you shouldnt try and condescend people

My point stands, bankers would rather hire UCL eco grads then UCL chem eng grads.

How will they show enthusiasm when they will be spending 40-50 hours a week on engineering and its workload.?

Its irrational
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electriic_ink
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(Original post by rickfloss)
ok, unless you are a investment banker or know someone in HR, you shouldnt try and condescend people
You don't need to be either. The recruitment for all these grad roles follows the same sort of pattern.

My point stands, bankers would rather hire UCL eco grads then UCL chem eng grads.
Marginally.

How will they show enthusiasm when they will be spending 40-50 hours a week on engineering and its workload.?

Its irrational
Because they'd be much more interested in your answer to the textbook "if I gave you £xxxx and told you to invest it in something, what you would you with it?" and the discussion of whatever it is that HR Depts expect incoming IB interns to know about.

You actually make like more difficult for yourself if you study a subject you don't like because you invariably have to spend more time on it to make up for all the inevitable procrastination. By doing something you enjoy, you can focus on your ECs and stuff.

Not to mention, taking Chem Eng opens you up to the very lucrative Oil & Gas sector.
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rickfloss
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(Original post by electriic_ink)
You don't need to be either. The recruitment for all these grad roles follows the same sort of pattern.



Marginally.



Because they'd be much more interested to the textbook "if I gave you £xxxx and told you to invest it in something, what you would you with it?" and the discussion of whatever it is that HR Depts expect incoming IB interns to know about.

You actually make like more difficult for yourself if you study a subject you don't like because you invariably have to spend more time on it to make up for all the inevitable procrastination. By doing something you enjoy, you can focus on your ECs and stuff.

Not to mention, taking Chem Eng opens you up to the very lucrative Oil & Gas sector.
Maybe, but youll probably need to move to aberdeen for that

i personally would not for a extra 10-15k
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addylad
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(Original post by rickfloss)
Maybe, but youll probably need to move to aberdeen for that

i personally would not for a extra 10-15k
As I said in another thread, Aberdeen is the place to be for O&G, but I know chemical engineers who work miles from rigs/plants, with occasional visits to site.

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Ade9000
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(Original post by rickfloss)
How will they show enthusiasm when they will be spending 40-50 hours a week on engineering and its workload.?
By keeping up with financial trends and market activity during their spare time. You can study a degree and still be oblivious to the outside world concerning your degree.

It should also be noted that it's always about the degree, but the skills you gain from it. IB requires analytical and organization skills, along with problem solving abilities and time management. These can be obtained from a chemical engineering degree as well an economics degree. Even from societies at universities.
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Et Tu, Brute?
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(Original post by pleasedtobeatyou)
After going to several unis for engineering open days, the impression I've gained is that the engineering -> IB route is more likely for engineering branches which have greater mathematical content e.g mechanical, aeronautical, civil rather than chemical, electrical, etc
not sure where the assumption that EE/EEE has less maths than other engineering disciplines is coming from, in fact I've heard it is one of the more mathematically intense fields of engineering.
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AnharM
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(Original post by electriic_ink)
Not to mention, taking Chem Eng opens you up to the very lucrative Oil & Gas sector.
Can you tell me more about the "lucrative" Oil & Gas sector? Why is it lucrative?

I've been reading up the amount of hours Investment Bankers need to work every week, and apparently they work in average of 100 hours per week. That's just crazy in my opinion. I need my social life, and I need my sleep. Even with a starting salary of £50k+, working every day from 10am - 2am is crazy. Chemical Engineers earn a decent salary I've heard.
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addylad
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(Original post by AnharM)
Can you tell me more about the "lucrative" Oil & Gas sector? Why is it lucrative?

I've been reading up the amount of hours Investment Bankers need to work every week, and apparently they work in average of 100 hours per week. That's just crazy in my opinion. I need my social life, and I need my sleep. Even with a starting salary of £50k+, working every day from 10am - 2am is crazy. Chemical Engineers earn a decent salary I've heard.
It's lucrative because all the big players - Shell, Exxon, Chevron, BP, etc. have a constant need for chemical engineers. Chemical engineers are the ones (primarily) designing, operating, and improving the plants. You can't NOT pay them well, because someone else will.

And if you're willing to do some offshore work the money is just stratospheric.

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pshah2
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Absolutely. Nowadays bankers do all sorts of degrees. It can be a plus since you have a background in something else and bring a new perspective.
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teen1234
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I've heard of medicine and dentistry graduates getting jobs in IB. Any difficult degree with high A levels can get you into IB. But you have to show some sort of motivation also
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Magicdesignss27
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(Original post by NB_ide)
It will be fine, engineering subjects are a decent route into banking. Just make sure you get some internships/placements in banks during the summer, always be thinking about your ultimate goal and that chem eng. is just to get you there.
love this advice im in the same boat rn
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