Ok since people are always curious as to why I am such a fan of Cass...here you go! A quick interview I did a while back. FYI I am not saying other european business schools aren't better than Cass... I'm just saying Cass deserves to be recognized as one of the leading business schools, with a high potential going forwards!
Where did you hear about Cass?
I spoke to many friends and industry contacts to gain insight into the best programmes available in International Finance. Cass was consistantly recommended over and over, so it seemed like a great fit for what I was looking for in my academic studies. I also had a personal connection with Cass since my father completed his Masters here in 1977!
Why did you choose to study at Cass?
It was tough deciding where to complete my masters, but ultimately Cass stood out as the leading faculty for specialist degrees in Finance. Rankings can validate this, as Cass keeps climbing in the FT's European Business School Ranking.
Having completed my bachelors degree at Cass in Investment & Financial Risk Management, I had a solid network within the school, and really enjoyed being a part of a number of societies. Enrolling in the masters allowed me to continue learning in a fast-paced environment, whilst participating in a number of activities that Cass has to offer, and interact with new classmates.
What were you doing before you started the course at Cass?
Before starting my masters, I spent 3-months working in Mergers & Acquisitions at a Global Investment Bank. In M&A you constantly scrutinize financial statements, and this was a key motivation for me wanting to pursue an MSc in International Accounting & Finance.
Why did you choose to Study an MSc?
The MSc for me was all about expanding my skill set and thus increasing my employability, whilst developing my network, and learning in a challenging yet enjoyable environment.
What aspects have you enjoyed about the course?
The people and the course structure.
On our course there is a huge diversity of students, the perfect example of Cass' international importance. I enjoy working with people with different and often fascinating backgrounds and definitely adds to the overall enjoyment of the course.
I greatly enjoyed the balance between the accounting and finance aspects of the programme. Of course, these two disciplines interact, and the course usually requires us to use accounting measures for a markets-oriented purpose This means we often work through a company's accounts with the mindset of a financial analyst.
What elements of the way in which the course is delivered that you especially like? Or the way in which the course is structured?
The MSc programmes have more interaction between students than at the BSc level. This is due to more emphasis on group work, presentations and class discussions. In class we spend a lot of time working through Case Studies, where we are not only asked to calculate financial elements, but also asked encouraged to discuss our findings and develop in-depth analysis of our own.
What are your career ambitions?
After completing my masters I will be joined the Investment Banking Division of a XYZ Bank in London, as a first year analyst.
Careers in Investment Banking are extremely rewarding. What attracted me in particular is they encompass a number of interesting aspects within finance:
-Quantitative and financial research and modelling
-Strategic understanding of large entities
-Financial knowledge with respect to capital markets
Developing strengths in these areas, hopefully will allow me to work on exciting projects in the hopes of working as a key intermediary between the companies and the market, in the hope of adding to the value creation process.
My career ambitions are to work with large corporate clients in advising them on their most important strategic decisions. In 5 years, I hope to have worked on a number of large corporate finance transactions involving M&A, Restructuring, IPOs, Equity and Debt Recapitalisations.
How will the programme help you achieve your career objective?
The programme at Cass allowed me to strengthen my skills, and receive a well-recognised degree from the leading finance faculty in London. Having the Cass MSc stamp on my CV undoubtedly gives you a strong competitive edge as you start your career.
How did you find the facilities at Cass? Is there anything that stands out specifically?
Cass is famous for having exceptional facilities, and as students we are all very proud about these. The building and its state-of-the-art resources are hugely important to the day-to-day life of the students. As students, we all enjoy working in a modern and user-friendly space, and having the best tools at our disposal, such as the dozens of Bloomberg and ThomsonReuters terminals.
This is essential to the success of Cass producing well prepared and successful students ready to enter the employment market.
What I enjoy the most about the Cass facilities is the Bloomberg trading room. With a few friends we enrolled on a trading simulation game, and spent countless hours in that room. With live feed from the markets and Bloomberg TV screens, the room is really set up to feel like a trading floor!
What kind of support did you receive from the staff?
The staff at Cass are fantastic at making themselves available to students. Every professor that I have had has been able to give me individual advice if needed. During my course, I made use of the drop-in hours, but I also contacted my professors by email, and this ultimately meant that I never felt lost, confused or unsupported during my studies- a huge relief given the demanding nature of the course!
Have you used the careers service? How did they help you?
The careers service works very hard in trying to provide us with detailed information on how to succeed in finding the right job. We have weekly information sessions and meetings with career consultants. The careers service also have a great online website where we can upload our CV and find out what jobs are available. Once you know what job you are looking for, the careers service will help you to brush up for an interview or assessment center.
Are you/have you been a member of any of the University clubs and societies? If so which?
At the start of my masters, I was elected president of the M&A Society. The society pools together students that have a strong interest in deal-making, and it is a platform for us to bring in guest speakers and create insightful events. As president of the M&A Society, I have worked closely with the Mergers & Acquisitions Research Center (MARC) at Cass; the leading research center/think-tank in M&A intelligence.
This year the M&A Society is hosting the M&A Conference, the first of what we hope to become an annual series. The conference has secured leading deal-makers as participants, and it will help showcase Cass and our research center as the leading faculty for M&A.
How would you describe your experience of living in London?
London is a vibrant, cosmopolitan, and welcoming city, that prospers due to its ability to attract talent internationally. I enjoy living and working in London, for these aspects. And afterall, where else is more suited than studying finance than in the heart of the City of London!