1. Nov 27, 2014

### ElliotSmith

Is it true that graduates from ivy league universities (particularly Harvard) are sought after by employers more so than grads from lesser colleges? Aren't there certain jobs and career paths (like investment banking) that are reserved exclusively for ivy league grads?

If anyone reading this thread went to an ivy league school, could you give me your input on this?

2. Nov 27, 2014

### WWGD

Some people do not agree with this, e.g.:

https://www.amazon.com/Higher-Education-Colleges-Wasting-Kids/dp/B005OHTDJ8

Someone in this site linked to this; can't remember who it was. For one, it seems , at least at the undergrad level, that a lot of classes are taught by T.A 's , who themselves took the class recently before teaching it. And, while there may be stars among the faculty, you ( or I ) are not likely to come into contact with them.

It does seem, from the book (and the associated blog) you do get a bump from an Ivy league degree, but the bump is short-lived and only takes you as far as your talent will let you go.

Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
3. Nov 28, 2014

### Staff: Mentor

Someone close to me was an Ivy League graduate and even decades after he graduated (at the bottom of his class), he was hired just because of where he went to school. Some companies (HR staff) are so impressed by the school that they don't even check to see if the person is qualified for the job. So he has a long list of hires based on his Alma Mater and laid off within 18 months (didn't know what he was doing). These positions were all in finance which are big on boasting about the schools their employees graduated from. He was an executive, 6 digit income.

I don't think this is as true outside of finance.

4. Nov 28, 2014

Yes, the degree does give you the advantage of getting you in the door, but after that, you're on your own, and will go as far as your talent and willingness to work will take you. So the extra $$you pay are to get you into the job. 5. Nov 28, 2014 ### leroyjenkens If someone sees that you graduated from Harvard, they'll probably hire you based solely on that. Sure, after you're hired, all the burden then rests on you, but at least you got hired. Some people take a long time to get passed that first step. 6. Nov 28, 2014 ### russ_watters ### Staff: Mentor However, the other side of the coin is not true: there are no industries reserved only for Harvard grads. 7. Nov 28, 2014 ### Nugatory ### Staff: Mentor There's a distinct possibility that the causation runs the other way. The people(all men, BTW) that I know with this history are poseurs, better at presenting themselves than delivering. Detecting them in an interview is very difficult, as there's just not time to probe deeply under the facade, and reference-checking doesn't work much better. Considering how difficult it is to flunk out of an Ivy League school, the fact he graduated at the bottom of his class suggests that he may have tap-danced his way in there the same way. 8. Nov 28, 2014 ### WWGD Yes, that is why it was George Constanza, not Georgette Constanza; I have trouble thinking of a woman trying to pull off a Constanza, let alone a lifetime worth of Constanzas. SERENITY NOW!!!!!!! 9. Nov 29, 2014 ### ElliotSmith I read that employers in the banking and finance industry put special emphasis on hiring mostly Ivy League graduates. But graduating from a big ivy really doesn't give you any advantage outside of finance. Also, there are certain law firms that only hire people with juris doctors from "big ivy" law schools. 10. Dec 1, 2014 ### WWGD So it seems to come down to: are you willing to pay the extra$$'s to be able to get in the door ? You get

either maybe $100,000+ debt from an Ivy league degree vs. maybe$35,000 in debt from state U. Is the

$65,000 difference worth it, i.e., is it a good long-term investment to pay an extra$65,000 for that extra chance to get in the door?

11. Dec 3, 2014

### jz92wjaz

The things that make you appealing to an Ivy League school make you appealing to an employer too. If you come from poverty and didn't have many connections growing up, an Ivy League education can help you build connections that will make you successful in life. If you come from a middle or upper class family and already have decent connections, it may not really benefit you.

I was accepted into a fairly prestigious private school, but I picked a public university that offered me a full tuition scholarship, and I don't regret that decision. I've never had a problem finding employment, and I graduated with no debt. I know a hard working, intelligent, recent Harvard Law grad that is currently unemployed. To top it all off, he has 6 figures of debt.

12. Dec 4, 2014

### WWGD

jz92wjaz,
Maybe you could qualify your statement somewhat: the connections will _help_ make you successful, but , as the data suggests, the
connections and the Ivy league education overall will help mostly to get you in the door, not to be successful itself. IOW, It takes more than just sizzle, you also need to have some steak to support the sizzle. And getting you in the door, and allowing you to form those connections, must , over the long run, be worth the 6-figure debt that you mentioned.

Last edited: Dec 4, 2014