tamm's picture
Rank: Senior Chimp | 28

I will be applying to (only) USC and John Hopkins masters in finance.

My question is, if I do get into both programs (hopefully i do!), which program do you think would satisfy my interests? What are YOUR opinions on both programs?

-Graduating with bachelors in finance and non target (3.4-3.5 gpa)
-Have not taken GMAT (aiming for 680+)
-Not sure at all as to what I want to do (hopefully a masters in finance will help me figure it out)
-Only 2 years of experience + internship at wealth management firm
-Would want to reside and work in LA, not sure about east coast yet

If i had a choice now, I would pick Johns Hopkins.

My reasoning is that even tho JH is in east coast, they have a much better "international" reputation as a university vs USC imo. More employers (esp ones that arent from Southern California) would recognize Johns hopkins rather than USC a lot more.... I think? However, USC has a strong network as well, esp in LA. I do not know which program is actually better in regards to education and academics.

Is my reasoning sound? Or am i totally off. Which school should I choose IF i were to get accepted to both?

United States - West
United States - Northeast

Comments (32)

Sep 19, 2017

JHU makes no sense if you want to work in LA

Sep 19, 2017

I'd prefer to work in LA, but if I were to find a better opportunity elsewhere, I would most likely take it.

Of course their would be other factors, but just wanted to clarify..

Sep 19, 2017

USC without a doubt. Zero question.

Sep 19, 2017

Why? That was my initial impression... But many have told me that the global reputation of JH is too much to pass on

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Sep 19, 2017

Why? That was my initial impression... But many have told me that the global reputation of JH is too much to pass on

Because that dude gets paid for steering social media

M7 MBA, iBanking. Top MSF grad. AntiTNA. Truth is hard to hear! But... :
DickFuld: Yeah....most of these people give terrible advice.:
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Sep 20, 2017

From my research...JHU's MSF is a joke. If you want to be placed in LA, USC will do.

Sep 24, 2017

Curiously, noone here seems to be concerned by the fact that JHU Carey is nowhere to be found on USNews' Ranking. Too bad for its overall "reputation" right?

(I mean:
There are some unknown schools on this ranking. And JH isn't)

Marshall is at a solid #25 spot, which should be reassuring. :)

Sep 25, 2017

Believe USNews rankings include those schools with aacsb accreditation. JHU just received accreditation this year, so it will take another reporting period or so for it to be integrated into rankings.

Sep 24, 2017

Forgive my words, but I think anyone interested in the JHU MSF program can't be really serious about pursuing a career in finance. JHU MSF was created to make money from the Chinese students who don't have a clue about program reputation and only want a school brand on their resume. The entire program is made of Chinese students from all sorts of shitty schools in China.

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Oct 4, 2017

honestly, sounds about right.

Nov 24, 2017

This is hilarious. :D
And unfortunately, that may possibly be true... :/

Sep 25, 2017

Just be aware that both programs have terrible placements. Hell some accepted jobs as audit associates(completely irrelevant) and some went to accounting from USC's MSF just because they couldn't land other finance related jobs

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Nov 24, 2017

At least 2 students of the USC 2016 MSF Class accepted full-time positions at Goldman Sachs. Other employers include JPMorgan.

Investment banking (Job Function): 13% placement.

(Source: 2016 Employment Report).

Not that bad, huh? Considering, for example, top-ranked UVA McIntire M.S. Commerce has a 5% placement in IB (job function).

Nov 28, 2017

Yeah, 13% of the total 60% placement is not attractive at all. And UVA has much larger class and almost 100% placement rates

Dec 1, 2017

You have a point.
The more I explore the US pre-experience M.Fin. options, the more it seems to me MIT Sloan is the only valuable valid option.

Dec 4, 2017

That plus Vanderbilt. That's it. WUSTL fakes their placements and students are pretty much on their on there.

Dec 4, 2017

I must point that the main difference between Vandy & MIT (apart from the fact that MIT is an M7 school) is that MIT allows you to choose an 18-month format for the program: which means the program includes the opportunity to pursue an internship.

So, that said, MIT would actually allow a students with no previous relevant finance internships to be able to properly launch a career in finance.

That is not possible with Vandy: you'd have to apply to SA on your own. And U.S.-based offices, contrary to European ones, would find that quite odd that a MSF graduate doesn't apply directly to a FT position.

So one should only go to Vandy if they have previous relevant finance internship(s), before attending the program.

Am I right here? If someone who knows people at those aforementioned schools could confirm or correct me, would appreciate it.

Best Response
Dec 5, 2017

Pretty much. Getting an internship even an unpaid one at a boutique the summer before matriculation shouldn't be a problem. Vanderbilt consistently places well if you have some finance experience. Hell, I've seen a career switcher who went there and is now manager at Deloitte TAS which is very unusual and odd.

Even without internship in the relevant field, you can still do great unless you have IB or bust attitude. The key is to be flexible and be more open to jobs. Just not IB.

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Dec 9, 2017

Why would someone from Vandy apply to a SA instead of a FT? serious question

Jun 14, 2018

No offense. Why did you say WUSTL faked their placements?

Nov 28, 2017

Unless you want to live and work in Maryland (to be fair i live here and it's dope) go with USC. With all due respect to JHU, unless you're going there to do an MPH or an advanced engineering degree i wouldn't suggest a master's from there. Just use the search function on this website and type MSF Johns Hopkins and you'll see a pattern. Most of the posters are Chinese/international students (see the grammar/syntax errors) who know the name as a result of the school's ties to the global healthcare scene. I mean i don't think you're lighting your money on fire if you choose to go there, but if your goals are Cali, your grades and GMAT prediction are good but not great and you're not sure what you actually want to do the better choice is USC.

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Dec 10, 2017

And instead, how is USC in terms of placement's outcomes in the east coast?

Dec 11, 2017

I think it's a great option for domestic students. The network is very loyal and responsive, the cost of the program is relatively low comp'd to other MSFs, facility and faculty are strong, curriculum is interesting, and the brand name is still respected.

The placement numbers are skewed by the chinese students - no surprise. However, if you are a domestic student, then this creates an opportunity for you due to the limited competition when networking with alumni. Domestic students tend to do well. Need to look under the hood of the numbers. Lots of alumni working in variety areas of finance - F500, consulting, commercial banking, PE and IB (boutique and MM), corporate development, business development, asset management, etc.

Dec 11, 2017

Like i said i don't think you're lighting your money on fire or anything, but with the goals stated in the original post, I really don't think that the JHU brand name is going to be more relevant on the west coast than USC. I think even on the east coast it would be a toss-up.

FWIW my brother and a few friends from HS have done their Masters in Engineering at JHU, and the name carries weight with all the big Architecture/Engineering/Construction groups on both coasts. But if you're looking at Post-Grad Schools for Finance in MD I'd even tend to lean toward the Smith School over JHU.

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Dec 11, 2017

right, whenever discussing MSFs, regional-focus is always the first consideration with the exception of a handful of programs. my point is a lot of kids freak out after looking at one or two stats about the program without doing any due diligence.

Dec 11, 2017

This is a complete no brainer. JHU shouldn't be in the running at all. Anyone who even implies that there might be a legitimate reason to choose JHU is biased. Under no circumstance JHU.

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Dec 11, 2017