Michigan Ross vs Vanderbilt

Hi all! I’m a current high school senior deciding on how to go about the college process. Ideally, I’d like to go into financial services in NYC after I graduate college. My true top choice is Michigan Ross (I’m an out of state applicant.) I love the sports culture, school spirit, social scene, and the Ross curriculum. But I’m also thinking about applying ED to Vanderbilt. Like Michigan, Vandy has great school spirit and a thriving social scene. I also like that Vandy isn’t known to be overly competitive for such a high caliber school. Plus, I wouldn’t mind the better weather at Vandy. Assuming I would be just about equally happy at both schools, should I apply ED to Vanderbilt or not ED anywhere and hope & pray that I get into Ross. Also, just how competitive is getting into Ross these days? Any insight on some major differences between the two schools would also be appreciated :slight_smile:

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EA to Michigan-Ross and apply to other direct admit business programs. If you are interested in finance and/or economics, then the potential list of target schools becomes quite large.

Nothing in your post leads me to believe that Vanderbilt is the better school for your professional goals.


FYI - Depending on all your grades, scores, and your demographics, if you really want to go to Michigan I would not apply to Ross as a freshman (if you don’t get into Ross you can’t apply as a sophomore). I made the mistake, I am a white male and basically had a slim to none chance of getting into Ross based on my scores as compared to the other students at my high school. Turns out it is a really good thing. LSA majors have a ton a flexibility and you can still take business classes. You can minor in business. I am thinking about double majoring in Econ and Information Studies. There are so many really interesting majors that financial service firms like and as a recruiter told me a degree from Michigan is worth the paper it is printed on! Go Blue!


At the risk of pouring it on if your true top choice is Ross, don’t ED anywhere.


Michigan’s Ross accepts internal transfers from other UMich schools, such as LSA, even after being rejected as a high school senior.


You can’t apply to Ross as a transfer if not accepted initially. You get one shot to apply. On the page you linked to above it says this: Please note that this information is only for students who have not applied to Ross before and are on the Ann Arbor campus.

Also says it here: If I’m not accepted, may I reapply next year? It is not encouraged, and the U-M Transfer Admission process is not designed for students who have previously applied.

OP…what would your major be at Vanderbilt, as they don’t have business majors?


At Vandy, I would probably major in econ and minor in business.

“Our Transfer Admission process is not always for U-M students who have previously applied to the BBA program.”

“It is not encouraged” and “is not always for U-M students who have previously applied” are statements with wiggle room. Those quotes do not rule out the possibility. So I believe it’s still a possibility of reapplying after being rejected as a HS senior.

I haven’t seen a clear and unamibigious statement posted such as “Previously rejected Ross applicants are NOT allowed to reapply.”

I think it’ll depend year-by-year, based on the number and quality of both “internal” and “external” Ross applicants.

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Thanks. I agree there’s wiggle room, but with only 100 or so transfers accepted each year (we don’t know how many, if any, were reapplicants) the odds are against it.


If you want to apply ED to Vanderbilt, do it! Michigan is a great option, but let’s be honest here. Vanderbilt undergrad for a career on Wall Street is at least as credible. Like Stanford, Northwestern, U. Chicago, Harvard, most other Ivies, Duke, etc… Vanderbilt could easily offer an undergrad business degree, but doesn’t. All these universities believe a broader undergraduate curriculum will serve a student better in finance over the long run. I suggest you major in Economics, and if you desire, minor in Business at Vanderbilt. One of my daughters majored in Economics, and minored in both Business and Psychology while playing on Vanderbilt’s Women’s Basketball team (playing Div I in the SEC Conference is basically equal to a full time job) which is probably pushing the boundaries, but shows what you can do at Vanderbilt. You will get a job on Wall Street in New York or even at highly respected industry stalwart Alliance Bernstein’s new HQ in Nashville. If you work a few years and desire to go back to school, go to one of the universities listed above for your MBA, which is a fantastic experience, since your classmates (and you) will have several years of real and amazingly diverse work experiences. While Vanderbilt students are very driven in the career direction they’ve chosen, the atmosphere is also highly collaborative and friendly.


Sorry, but Ross is a target for Wall Street. Vanderbilt isn’t.

Would you consider Northwestern a target? I’m considering that as well

From the WSO website:

Target Schools For Investment Banking

The target schools are generally considered to consist of Ivy League schools, top liberal arts colleges (LACs), MIT, University of Michigan, Stanford, Georgetown, University of California - Berkeley, and the University of Chicago. Each of these schools has a large number of Wall Street firms recruiting on campus every year.

Semi Target Schools

Semi-target schools are schools where there are a more limited number of Wall Street firms recruiting consistently, the firms recruit for back and middle office positions, or some combination of the two. Some examples of semi-target schools would include Emory, Notre Dame, and Vanderbilt.

I am a current freshman at Michigan. The process for Ross is to apply to LSA first, if you get in and submitted your extra Ross info you are then put into the Ross application pool. You are still accepted to Michigan, but you may not get into Ross. They make it very clear if you don’t get in you can’t apply as a sophomore. In fact they let you withdraw your Ross application after the first or second round. I was waitlisted to Ross, not outright rejected, but at that point was told I will not be able to apply. I can apply to minor.

Honestly I was bummed at first, but everyone I spoke with said regardless of your major, you don’t give up Michigan. A BS in Econ will get you to Wall Street. I am here now and there are so many double majors that will make me even more marketable.

Stats, SI, Informatics, CS thru LSA, Entrepreneur, Ross minor. The choices are limitless.

This is what I say every single year. A degree from Michigan with students being active on campus will get you the interviews you are looking for. Many, many students NOT in Ross end up with great companies. The companies flood the campus yearly. There is also some competition for jobs between Ross and non Ross applicants.

So, getting into Ross is great. But it is not mandatory to going into business at Michigan.

Don’t forget industrial engineering!

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