From Goldman Sachs to Morgan Stanley, investment banks are among the biggest recruiters of MBA graduates. But what are the best MBA programs for careers in investment banking?
According to new research from Menlo Coaching, Columbia Business School tops the list, with more Columbia MBA graduates hired by investment banks than MBAs from any other business school.
One of the elite group of M7 business schools, Columbia saw a total of 99 graduates from its MBA program find jobs in investment banking in 2020.
After Columbia, NYU Stern provided 77 graduates to investment banks, though this was a higher proportion of its overall class, at 21% compared to Columbia’s 13%.
The top two MBAs for investment banking are both based in New York City, a sign that location is key if you aim to secure a top investment banking role.
The third highest provider of MBA investment banking graduates in 2020 was the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, with 61 graduates; 34 of whom found jobs in New York.
The top 10 best MBAs for investment banking are all based in the US; the highest ranking non-US school in Menlo’s list is London Business School in 12th place.
10 Best MBAs for Investment Banking
Top MBAs for multinational investment banks
Columbia also placed more students at the world’s largest investment banks than any other school. A total of 56 graduates from the Columbia MBA found jobs at top firms like Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan Chase, known as the bulge bracket banks.
NYU Stern saw 51 students employed at bulge bracket banks, while University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business placed 34 graduates.
Other schools had a higher proportion of banking students secure roles within the competitive bulge bracket. Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business had just 25 students find bulge bracket jobs, but this represented a huge 93% of all graduates who went into banking. Columbia’s 56 bulge bracket bankers were 57% of all banking graduates.
More business schools with a high proportion of banking graduates joining the bulge bracket were University of Michigan Ross School of Business with 82% and University of South Carolina’s Marshall School of Business with 78%.
Top MBAs for elite boutique investment banks
The bulge bracket isn’t the only desirable destination if you're looking for an investment banking career. Places at elite boutiques specializing in specific areas of investment banking and offering a more personalized service are also sought after.
These boutique investment banks include Centerview Partners, Evercore, and Greenhill & Co.
Menlo's research found Columbia also had the most graduates (35) securing roles with elite boutiques in 2020. The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School was second with 26, while Chicago Booth and NYU Stern came third and fourth with 18 and 17.
Wharton’s figure was 44% of all investment banking placements, giving it the highest proportion of banking graduates finding jobs at elite boutiques. Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business came second and third with 41% and 38%.
Want one of the highest-paying finance jobs?
Elite boutiques and bulge bracket banks are some of the most competitive areas of investment banking, worth aiming for if you're an ambitious student looking for a career in the industry.
Schools who send most of their students to work in these sectors are worth considering. All 100% of investment banking students at Duke Fuqua and Marshall School of Business at University of South Carolina found roles at bulge bracket banks and elite boutiques. 97% of University of Virginia Darden School of Business students did the same.
If you're looking to find a top job in investment banking, these MBAs are a great option.