Insights into the MSF at WUSTL

danieltale's picture
Rank: Chimp | 13

Hey fellows. Could anyone tell me how good the MSF (quantitative finance track) at WUSTL is? I got an offer from that program. Does the tag of "target school" really matter in job search? I heard that the program arranges summer internships for students. Is there a quota for the internships? Thanks a lot in advance.

Comments (25)

Jan 23, 2013

A little more info about my perspective on the MSF mentioned above:
I heard that international students are easier to land a job in North America for positions in back office, evaluating risk and stuff. And I think it's good to learn some technical tools so that I can stand out from the MSF grads when competing for a job. In that angle, the MSF at WUSTL looks good to me.

The upsides of the program:
1.5-year curriculum allows you to apply for a summer internship and work with local firms with other students as a group on a practical project--these are good for your resume.
The faculty is diverse, and the intellectual capital of the Olin School of Business is among the top 10 in the States.

The downsides:
The MSF was just split into two specialized tracks two years ago. The first QFin-track graduating class will be the first testament to the quality of the track this spring. So, the placement for my track is yet to come...
87% of the class is international students. They may generate an alumni network without a focus on North America, which means I lose some potential advantages in my career search.
The reputation of finance (WUSTL) in the financial services industry is unknown.= not a target school?...

As an international student, I want to try my best to secure a job in the states upon graduation. Hence, I want to utilize everything possible to maximize the probability to obtain a job offer. It would be great if I have an extensive and accessible alumni network specifically in the States.

Career-wise, I want to work in the area of equity research or asset management, I really appreciate any feedback on my concerns listed above. Thank you so much :)

A side note:
I also applied to the MSF at UT Austin. It is a new program (launched in 2012) and the placement stats is not posted yet... Regardless of that, UTA is famous for finance in the states, and its business school is pretty good too. How would you compare the MSF at UTA with the one at WUSTL? Thank U!

Jan 23, 2013

I think you should be fine if you do WUSTL. If you get Austin you are better off.

Jan 23, 2013
kyleyboy:

I think you should be fine if you do WUSTL. If you get Austin you are better off.

Hi, thank you for your advice. May I ask why Austin is "better off", besides its reputation in finance? Do you know anyone doing MSF at Austin? Thank you.

Jan 23, 2013
danieltale:
kyleyboy:

I think you should be fine if you do WUSTL. If you get Austin you are better off.

Hi, thank you for your advice. May I ask why Austin is "better off", besides its reputation in finance? Do you know anyone doing MSF at Austin? Thank you.

Lifestyle and reputation, no I don't know anyone there but I know a few people in Austin that love the city.

Jan 23, 2013

what is WUSTL?

Jan 23, 2013

St. Louis. It is a great program. Nikki is a great adcom and with them splitting the program into two tracks it allows you to really focus in what you ultimately want to do in finance. I am waiting to see placement stats for this class that just graduated.

Whether it is worth it or not is a very individual question. Do you like the school and the fit?

Jan 23, 2013

It is alright. Not a target on Wall street, but it is still a good school.

Jan 23, 2013

Which program provides the best OCR for BB FO IBD of the programs listed below?

WUSTL MSF: not an NYC target but a great MSF program with a great entering class profile (722 GMAT, 3.5 GPA).
Duke MMS: not a finance-specific program but has a great brand name and good OCR.
UVA MCommerce: not finance specific but still a respected brand name.
LSE MSc Acct and Finance/Finance: Top target in London for BBs, but some say that OCR is tough for US citizens.
Texas MPA: The nation's top accounting program. Supposedly BBs and MMs will recruit from this program. The program places extremely well into Big 4 roles.

Jan 23, 2013

I'd like to know more about non-IBD banking placements from these schools. I'm interested in corporate banking.

Jan 23, 2013

So, I was a member of the conversation you're referring to (I played the part of the incredulous guy). I think someone posted their placement stats on that same thread and it looks like they are indeed taking FO spots.

I know this might not be a helpful comment, but I'm mostly writing it to bump the thread so that Anthony can respond.

"If you can count your money, you don't have a billion dollars." - J. Paul Getty

Jan 23, 2013

LOL Thanks SanFran

Yeah, Washington is one of the better MSF's. It really benefits from the Olin's schools MBA recruiting. A member on the board is getting his MSF there as we speak. Placement is good, middle market IB and some BB. Starting salary is like 60-65 plus bonus which is inline with MM firms.

Princeton is obv the top program, but it is more MFE. I think Wash is better than MIT right now because MIT is brand new and like 90K which is absurd. Outside of Wash you have good programs that place regionally.

Jan 23, 2013

so u think 1 year finance experience>wash U> mm is feasible? off the top of ur head u know how many ppl in the program?

Jan 23, 2013

I think 1 year is the sweet spot. Anything more than that and you get into trouble when recruiting happens. Well it might be different at WUSTL so you could probably get away with more WE and be considered for MBA positions if the experience was relevant.

I know at the program at Villanova we placed a lot of people at middle market banks. Of the top of my head I think WUSTL has like 40 kids in their class? Something around that number.

Jan 23, 2013

villanova placed allot? ididnt know they had a good MS?

Jan 23, 2013

Yeah, I think it is a good program. Placement is mainly MM banks, some bulge brackets. Mostly IB, but you get some traders here and there. Some PhD students, law students,credit analysts, etc. Places mainly in Philly/NYC.

I would place Villanova with BC and Vanderbilt.

Jan 23, 2013

WUSTL had 50 kids in the class of 2010. 60 in the incoming class of 2011.

Jan 23, 2013

anthony- say someone works 1 year, goes to an MSF, goes to a MM analyst program. After three years, if you don't get promoted, then what? MBA?

Jan 23, 2013

I think MM firms will be more forgiving, but larger banks still want the MBA. I guess it is how you sell it, but banks have that 2 and done thing as common practice. I would say that if you did your 2 in banking and got the boot go seek another bank or PE or whatever. You have a masters degree in grad level finance, don't let people disregard that.

Jan 23, 2013

Thanks anthony.......

know what the geographical placement is like?

Also, will 1 year of work experience in a relevant industry (big 4 structured finance) help offset a low GPA? (3.3)

also, I never got your, anthony's, thougts on rochester.............

Jan 23, 2013

Geographical placement for the WUSTL MSF is similar to the undergrad BSBA program (because MSF students are typically competing with undergrads for jobs). See the link below:

http://www.olin.wustl.edu/docs/WCC/EmploymentBSBA.pdf

Jan 23, 2013
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Jan 23, 2013