A month before Sarvshreshth Gupta died, he tried to quit his job as an analyst on one of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s most prestigious investment-banking teams.

During a flurry of technology deals early this year, working until 5 a.m. had become the norm, and the 22-year-old Wharton grad known to friends as Sav burned out, according to a bank colleague and an essay posted by his father on the website Medium. Then, soon after quitting, he changed his mind.

“I desired that he should complete his one year at Goldman Sachs, learn something about corporate life and then decide,” Gupta’s father wrote. “Under pressure from me, he rejoined.”

Goldman Sachs let Gupta come back and and offered him access to counseling services, according to two people with knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified discussing personal matters. It wasn’t long until he again faced “hard, continuous work, no breaks, no sleep and no respite,” his father wrote. On April 16, the banker called his dad from his San Francisco office at 2:40 a.m.

“He calls us and says, ‘It is too much. I have not slept for two days, have a client meeting tomorrow morning, have to complete a presentation, my VP is annoyed and I am working alone in my office,’” according to the essay. The young banker died that day.

Grueling Demands

While medical examiners have yet to release their report on what happened, the story of Gupta’s final weeks at the firm could reignite a debate about whether banks have done enough to ease grueling demands on their youngest workers. Six weeks after Gupta’s death, Thomas Hughes, a 29-year-old Moelis & Co. banker, was found dead outside his residence at 1 West St. in New York, where he lived on the 24th floor. His injuries were consistent with a fall, police said.

Wall Street firms including Goldman Sachs have sought in recent years to improve the experience for their new recruits, who carry out the Excel and Powerpoint grunt work that goes into presentations and ideas for clients. The shift, prompted by the 2013 death of a Bank of America Corp. intern, has been driven in part by a fear that the brightest college graduates don’t view investment banking as a sustainable career.

Goldman Sachs hired larger classes of analysts, the title held by entry-level bankers, and encouraged them to stay out of the office on Saturdays. The firm also stopped offering analysts two-year contracts, making them full-time employees from the start.