The Wall Street Scholars Program (WSSP) is a highly competitive and comprehensive program designed to help students earn internships on Wall Street. In collaboration with the Eller College Finance Department, Eller Professional Development Center and alumni, the WSSP helps bridge the gap between the academic and professional skills needed to land internships on Wall Street. The aim of this program is to place students in revenue-generating divisions across major market cities. Through a rigorous and structured program, students will develop the key traits and knowledge needed to land internships within major financial institutions.
In years past, we have successfully placed students in the following firms:
A WSSP Analyst will take FIN 417 – Wall Street Professional Development, a 3-unit course taught by finance faculty, which provides students exposure to investment banking and financial market-related careers that exist on Wall Street. FIN 417 is offered each Fall semester, and is available to sophomore Eller students who meet minimum requirements, and successfully complete a competitive interview process. The typical WSSP Analyst has an interest in finance and a strong desire to succeed, but does not yet have a deep understanding of the different roles financial institutions play in society, nor the ways its professionals advance society and capitalism. A key outcome of FIN 417 is for students to determine if they want to pursue a career in Investment Banking or Capital Markets.
Students who are in their first semester of sophomore year may apply for the Associate Level. In the Associate Level, students will begin actively pursuing an internship through a formal Wall Street recruiting process. The ideal WSSP Associate has previously enrolled in FIN 417 (though it is not required), demonstrated a genuine interest in financial markets, and built strong academic and extracurricular credentials. The WSSP Associate Level focuses on placement into major financial institutions within revenue generating divisions. The program accomplishes this through student-led lectures, mentoring rotations, evaluations, Wall Street style preparation interviews and other opportunities to maximize their chances of landing a position on Wall Street.
WSSP Scholars are typically juniors and seniors who have successfully completed the Associate level (though this is not a requirement), and who have obtained an internship or full-time offer within a revenue-generating division of a Wall Street bank or investment firm. WSSP Scholars learn from upper division students and alumni how to convert their internship into a full time offer, advance their markets and technical knowledge and mentor and coach the WSSP Analyst and Associate level students.
Positions on Wall Street are highly competitive. Your ability to land a position on Wall Street will largely depend on the amount of time, effort and personal drive you possess to make it happen. As an organization with tested and proven results, WSSP exists to maximize your potential. To improve your chances of success, we highly encourage you to go above and beyond to meet these milestones.
- Strong academic performance (earn good grades)
- Become involved in extracurricular (student organizations, work-study, part-time job, volunteer)
- Join Investments Club and/or Financial Management Association (Eller student clubs)
- Meet with Wall Street Scholars leadership to learn more
- Apply for WSSP Analyst Level – FIN 417 (April)
- Start WSSP Analyst Level – FIN 417 (fall semester)
- Apply for WSSP Associate Level (November)
- Start WSSP Associate Level, prepare for recruiting season
- Take on leadership positions in extracurricular activities
- Apply for financial firms’ leadership conferences and insight days
- Internship or part-time job in a finance or accounting-related job.
- Expand professional network through informational interviews and job shadows
- Complete WSSP-required reading and financial markets assignments
- Begin recruiting season for internships
- Continue recruiting season for internships
- Upon internship offer and acceptance, begin WSSP Scholar level
- Through WSSP Scholar level, prepare for success at internship
- Continue WSSP Scholar level
- Secure full-time job
- Mentor WSSP Associates and further market knowledge
While requirements are subject to change, generally we look for students who have the following qualifications:
- Minimum 3.3 GPA
- Finance, Economics or Accounting intended major or interest
- A strong desire to learn and demonstrated outstanding work ethic
- Willing and able to commit 4-5 hours per week
- Willing and able to put in additional hours outside of program
Applications for the Fall 2020 Analyst Class are open will be accepted on a rolling basis through July 2020. Interested students are encouraged to apply early and should be prepared to complete an interview with the course instructor. To apply, login to eSMS, select “Engagement”, then “Specialized Sophomore Career Course” and find “Wall Street Scholars – Analyst Level (FIN 417)."
Applications for the Associate level are closed and will re-open in October 2020 for December 2022 and May 2023 graduates.
Leadership and Contact
Frequently Asked Questions
What is acceptance rate into the program?
Students are accepted on an absolute basis depending on the competitiveness of the candidate pool.
Do I have to be a finance major?
Professionals on Wall Street come from a variety of majors. The program does not discriminate across majors although it highly recommends students pursue degrees in either finance, accounting, or business economics to best gain understanding and knowledge of the financial industry. Depending on the volume and competitiveness of the applicant pool, the program cannot guarantee consideration of non-business majors.
Is there a GPA requirement?
The program has a 3.3 cumulative GPA requirement. However, the program encourages anyone who is interested in applying.
As a first year student interested in the program, what resources can I use to best prepare myself?
Once a first year at the University of Arizona, take time to excel in your coursework. Stay busy with extracurricular activities by rushing a social or business fraternity/sorority, working part-time or volunteering. In August, attend Eller’s club fair, making sure to take advantage of organizations such as the Investments Club and/or Financial Management Association. Please meet with Jeff Welter, associate director of professional development, to discuss your career goals. Lastly, strive to gain exposure within the financial industry either through friends, family or other connections.
I am in high school but want to get a head start, how can I best prepare?
If you are a student in high school and think that you could be interested in a career on Wall Street, the best thing to do is to read the Wall Street Journal! Keeping up with the markets and financial news will prepare you exponentially as this knowledge only accumulates over time. Your parents and friends’ parents may also be a great resource to learn about the financial industry. Students are also welcome to reach out to the program prior to enrolling in the university. See above for our contact information.
Does the program cost money?
The program itself does not cost money. Occasionally, students may have to travel to network with alumni. There are university scholarships that can assist with these costs.
Do I need to join any additional clubs or organizations?
During a student's first year, the program highly recommends students join the Financial Management Association and the Investments Club. Both organizations will often host Wall Street alumni as guest speakers. Students can only benefit from active participation in both organizations.
What type of time commitment is there?
The students who have been most successful in this program have devoted countless hours to maximizing the resources the program provides in order to attain a position on Wall Street. In addition to bi-weekly meetings, the program often requires attendance at Financial Management Association Meetings and Investments Club meetings. These meetings typically occur on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday. Successful students; however, are participating in the program daily through reaching out and learning.
Why should I join this program?
Students should join this program if they want to have access to the best students, faculty and materials the University of Arizona and the Eller College of Management have to offer to its students seeking careers on Wall Street.
What is placement rate into firms?
The program has placed over 65% of its associates into bulge bracket banks. The program has placed 100% in prestigious internships in finance.
Can you guarantee that I will land a Wall Street job?
No. Unfortunately there is never an absolute guarantee that you will land a career on Wall Street (or any job for that matter). The Wall Street Scholars Program is developed to give students the necessary tools to prepare for a career on Wall Street. Again, the ability to land a position on Wall Street largely depends on the time put in, effort and overall execution of the student.
I want to go to the buy side, will this help?
The purpose of this program is to place students into bulge bracket, mid-tier or highly coveted boutique banks. While students seeking to go to the buy side directly out of undergrad may benefit from this program, the program will not focus on building any of those required skill sets.
Do you have equipment for following the markets?
Yes! Within the Financial Markets Center, Eller has 5 Bloomberg Terminals, full stock exchange monitors and other devices that anyone could find on a real life trading floor. Each monitor also contains a full Microsoft Office suite, including the latest version of Excel.