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Why don't I make the grade?

 
#1 Why don't I make the grade?
11/12/2007 18:27

Loveless

As a recent grad, I have only managed to get 3 interviews so far, and have faced a lot of rejections without interview. I'm Oxbridge (2:1) and got 4A, and my extra curriculars aren't too bad: 3 sports to county level, organised and hosted charity music event, ball committee, 2 instruments and summer work placements in marketing and finance (not internships though).

I was wondering if some kind individual would check out my C.V., and maybe a covering letter, and tell me where I'm going wrong/need to improve. I realise there are plenty of better qualified/more intelligent people, but I really thought I would get more interviews. I'm keeping my chin up, but want to start doing something rather than crying about it.

Any advice would be MUCH appreciated.

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#2 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
11/12/2007 19:46

aaa to Loveless (#1)

You're not alone and you have three more interviews than most people, so chin up old lad.

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#3 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
12/12/2007 09:42

H to deleted (#0)

Welcome to the real world. Maybe your C.V. is just badly written.

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#4 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
12/12/2007 11:17

Miss Firingsynapses to H (#3)

I'm in the same boat. I have an undergrad from LSE (1st Class) and masters from Oxbridge. I think it's because I didn't have the vital internship with a consultancy firm or a big bank. I have consulting experience but it's for the public sector (for a small unheard of consulting firm).

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#5 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
13/12/2007 17:00

Yuri to Miss Firingsynapses (#4)

It makes me wonder what exactly they are looking for. Seems to be such a minefield, luck must be a small factor.

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#6 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
13/12/2007 23:08

Alex to Yuri (#5)

Hmm...seems like you need to use the network from Oxbridge. Ask your mentor (if you have one).

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#7 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
16/12/2007 08:37

yeah but no but yeah but no... to Alex (#6)

I do feel for you certainly but I have more sympathy for the non Oxbridge person who does not have the Oxbridge advantage. You have a huge advantage over most applicants because of your University. Not getting an offer from a consulting firm when you are at Oxford or Cambridge is equivalent to being an English left footed goalkeeper, playing regularly for Manchester United and not being able to get into the national team

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#8 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 13:45

MrT to yeah but no but yeah but no... (#7)

Do some MBB etc. project work with Fr***minds and you'll soon build up some experience and contacts...

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#9 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 14:25

Mars A Day to Loveless (#1)

Loveless where were your 3 interviews? On what you have told us so far something is going wrong...

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#10 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 15:10

Loveless to Mars A Day (#9)

Mars, I am interviewing with Monitor, ACN and Deloitte. I applied to about 12 other firms (pretty much all strat) and got immediate rejections.

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#11 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 18:15

Tremolo to Loveless (#10)

I am another peson in the same position as Loveless and 'Miss Firing...'. Perhaps I've applied to even more places. I 3 As at A-level, have a first from UCL and masters from Oxford (gained a distinction) and some good extra curricular stuff too. Yet I've only had 3 interviews at small strat houses, and one at ACN. Had about 9-10 straight rejections. Doesn't sound like bad luck to me? What are they looking for that I don't have? Would someone care to look at my CV too?

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#12 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 18:50

MBB to Tremolo (#11)

Having done CV screening for MBB, I am constantly shocked by the quality of CVs that we have to reject. The average quality is really very high.

Simply having great academics (1sts, Distinctions) is not enough, there are probably 1000-2000 people graduating with 1sts from Oxford and Cambridge each year (3000-4000 per year per university, 20% with 1sts). Obviously only a minority (but not an inconsiderable minority) will apply to us, but given that we'll only interview a couple of hundred and we will interview some great candidates with 2.1s, having a 1st/Distinction is not a guarantee of anything.

To get an interview you need to be able to show great academic achievement plus a number of other exciting things, be that extra-curricular (founding an exciting new society, running a major student organisation), work experience (FTSE 100s, charities, banking, whatever) or anything that makes you stand out. I don't mean you all have to have banking internships, in fact, banking internships get pretty boring after a while, anything that makes it clear that you are self-motivated, can lead etc is what will make someone reading the CV stop and take interest

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#13 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 19:16

MBB to Tremolo (#11)

Having done CV screening for MBB, I am constantly shocked by the quality of CVs that we have to reject. The average quality is really very high.

Simply having great academics (1sts, Distinctions) is not enough, there are probably 1000-2000 people graduating with 1sts from Oxford and Cambridge each year (3000-4000 per year per university, 20% with 1sts). Obviously only a minority (but not an inconsiderable minority) will apply to us, but given that we'll only interview a couple of hundred and we will interview some great candidates with 2.1s, having a 1st/Distinction is not a guarantee of anything.

To get an interview you need to be able to show great academic achievement plus a number of other exciting things, be that extra-curricular (founding an exciting new society, running a major student organisation), work experience (FTSE 100s, charities, banking, whatever) or anything that makes you stand out. I don't mean you all have to have banking internships, in fact, banking internships get pretty boring after a while, anything that makes it clear that you are self-motivated, can lead etc is what will make someone reading the CV stop and take interest

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#14 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
17/12/2007 19:40

Student to MBB (#13)

Usually, your school should have a careers service, supporting the set up of your CV and CL.

If you desperately need help, I would also be willing to help you out. BUT: I have no consulting experience yet, worked in IB (GS) and Corporate Finance (DAX - Company).

So if you need, send me your stuff and I'll look over it

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#15 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
18/12/2007 00:25

J22 to Loveless (#10)

Loveless - have u already had your Monitor interview? I'm still waiting to hear and beginning to think it is not looking good...

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#16 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
18/12/2007 17:47

Loveless to J22 (#15)

Yeah. Student, would you mind? I could seriously use the opinion of someone that has been in a related industry. What's your e-mail address??

Muchas gracias

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#17 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
18/12/2007 18:42

Gordon Gecko to Loveless (#1)

Try www.helpmegetaninterview.com they will rewrite your CV into something that stands out a bit further than the average grads.

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#18 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
15/01/2008 17:00

willing to Loveless (#16)

I'd take a look too if you're desperate. Have done acn internship, got offer, and had interviews at OW, PwC, Bain. think it's just pretty competitive though, lots of ppl have never hit the rejection reality until this stage, the ole myth 'work hard and reap the rewards' doesn't stand up post uni...

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#19 RE: Why don't I make the grade?
16/01/2008 14:28

sadgrove to Loveless (#1)

Why not start by working as a self employed consultant? That way, you'd put things on your CV. Try this one: http://www.inst.org/IT-consultant-courses/become.htm

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