MSF Class of 2020

TNA's picture
Rank: The Pro | 40,289

Every year I do a post like this on about this date for students seeking admission. Most MSF/MMS program start their application cycle around this time so it is usually helpful. Prior years Q&A are listed below.

https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
Ground Rules:

1) I will only answer questions from students.
2) I will answer only once. If someone has additional questions, PM me.
3) Visit my site - Masters in Finance HQ

Comments (129)

Jan 30, 2019

Which masters program is best for setting up a career in the HF space?

Feb 1, 2019

A top MBA. Maybe a MFE at a top school if you want to get into program trading or something of the sort.

An MSF isn't going to help you go directly into a HF. Maybe after banking.

Dec 14, 2019

Hey TNA, would it be possible for you to PM me? I have a bunch of questions I'd really appreciate your help with, but the system isn't letting me PM you for some reason. Thank you!

Jan 31, 2019

[quote="TNA"]
Every year I do a post like this on about this date for students seeking admission. Most MSF/MMS program start their application cycle around this time so it is usually helpful. Prior years Q&A are listed below.

https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
Ground Rules:

1) I will only answer questions from students.
2) I will answer only once. If someone has additional questions, PM me.
3) Visit my site - Masters in Finance HQ

What's up TNA?
I ll share with you my profile:
GMAT 700
Gpa 29.14/30 (basically a 4/4 ) from an italian public uni (not renowned)
internship: 12 weeks in a local accounting firm; 10 weeks summer internship in a IT/Energy consulting agency in Rome; 8 weeks (ongoing) in a local consumer landing company (i wanted to do sth at a more prestigious company, such as a BIG 4, but I can't move to Milan/rome atm because of Exams.

Miscellanous extracurriculars: student representative in the economics department, Rotaract (founder, member and secretary), student economics association, mentee at Mentors4U (biggest merit-based menoring company in Europe).

I was searching for a good msc finance (or even Master in Management, if the placement in the financial sector is decent) in Europe (don't think it is worth it to go to the US now, expect for MIT/Princeton/UCLA/UCB but I am not qualified enough). Do you have any suggestions?
Cheers

Jan 31, 2019
TNA:

Every year I do a post like this on about this date for students seeking admission. Most MSF/MMS program start their application cycle around this time so it is usually helpful. Prior years Q&A are listed below.

https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o... https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
https://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/msf-class-o...
Ground Rules:

1) I will only answer questions from students.
2) I will answer only once. If someone has additional questions, PM me.
3) Visit my site - Masters in Finance HQ

What's up TNA?
I ll share with you my profile:
GMAT 700
Gpa 29.14/30 (basically a 4/4 ) from an italian public uni (not renowned)
internship: 12 weeks in a local accounting firm; 10 weeks summer internship in a IT/Energy consulting agency in Rome; 8 weeks (ongoing) in a local consumer landing company (i wanted to do sth at a more prestigious company, such as a BIG 4, but I can't move to Milan/rome atm because of Exams.
Miscellanous extracurriculars: student representative in the economics department, Rotaract (founder, member and secretary), student economics association, mentee at Mentors4U (biggest merit-based menoring company in Europe).
I was searching for a good msc finance (or even Master in Management, if the placement in the financial sector is decent) in Europe (don't think it is worth it to go to the US now, expect for MIT/Princeton/UCLA/UCB but I am not qualified enough). Do you have any suggestions?
Cheers

Feb 3, 2019

Sorry for missing this.

Strong GMAT. Great GPA. Relevant internships. I would apply to MIT, but definitely look at Bocconi, SSE, RSM, LBS (MiM or MFA), LSE, etc. Your profile is very strong and European programs look heavily at class rank as well as GMAT. I think at the level you are at you shouldn't have too much of a problem getting into most schools.

Good luck!

Feb 5, 2019
TNA:

Sorry for missing this.

Strong GMAT. Great GPA. Relevant internships. I would apply to MIT, but definitely look at Bocconi, SSE, RSM, LBS (MiM or MFA), LSE, etc. Your profile is very strong and European programs look heavily at class rank as well as GMAT. I think at the level you are at you shouldn't have too much of a problem getting into most schools.

Good luck!

No worries TNA. Thank you for your help! I don't think I have the credentials to get into MIT, it is not a problem tho, they've closed the application round. What schools do you recommend in Europe? LSE/LBS/Imperial/SSE/Bocconi/HEC/ESCP/ESSEC ? Others?

Thanks again!

Feb 5, 2019

Honestly, all the top programs. You have a very strong profile. A buddy of mine basically got a full ride scholarship to Bocconi with a 720 GMAT and a 3.5GPA from a good, but not great US school. You are right in that range yourself.

Euro programs look at class rank as a main factor with admissions. Not sure where you'd fall, but you basically have a 4.0GPA so I would imagine you'd be pretty high. The 700 GMAT is within the class profile range as well.

You'd have to decide how much you consider BREXIT to be a fear and if you'd prefer to study in continental Europe vs. the UK.

Nov 3, 2019
TNA:

Sorry for missing this.

Strong GMAT. Great usa todayGPA protonmail. Relevant internships. I would apply to MIT, but definitely look at Bocconi, SSE, RSM, LBS (MiM or MFA), LSE, etc. Your profile is very strong and European programs look heavily at class rank as well as GMAT. I think at the level you are at you shouldn't have too much of a problem getting into most schools.

Good luck!

internship: 12 weeks in a local accounting firm; 10 weeks summer internship in a IT/Energy consulting agency in Rome; 8 weeks (ongoing) in a local consumer landing company (i wanted to do sth at a more prestigious company, such as a BIG 4, but I can't move to Milan/rome atm because of Exams.

Feb 4, 2019

Hey TNA - connected with you before on private msg but would like a second take from you regarding future applications.

GPA: 3.7 from Canadian undergrad business program

GMAT: haven't written but aiming for 700+

Work: 2+ years in S&T at one of the big Canadian banks. Currently on a volatility trading desk. Could obtain good references from desks I worked on

Extracurricular: heavy involvement in finance clubs back in school with leadership position; at work mostly some mentorship / campus recruiting stuff

Goal: buyside opportunities in the US or move to a better brand name on the sell side. Given currnet visa situaiton, I heard that grad school in US is an easy way to transition to the US

In your opinion, is it better for me to go for a top MFin/MFE program or a top MBA if buyside is ultimate goal? I've done some math in undergrad but don't think I meet the hurdle for more quanty programs like Berkeley or Princeton.

Many thx!

Feb 4, 2019

You have the GPA and top tier work experience that an MBA would look for. Id say work another year and get that GMAT score booked and do an MBA. The MSF would be a waste for you and the MFE would really only benefit you if being a quant was your goal.

Feb 4, 2019

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Feb 4, 2019

I'm quite certain that the fact that you applied to MIT as well had absolutely no influence on the outcome, but congrats on MIT! Great place as well.

To answer your question (although I'm not TNA):

-Your quant score is a bit low for the MFE (Oxford recommends 90th percentile, which is effectively a 51).

-Your work experience isn't great compared to the average admit (I assume the IB internship isn't at a BB, since you don't mention it). If you look at people admitted to the MFE, most have several internships within IB/consulting/PE, and many of them have an internship at a BB within IB/Markets.

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Feb 4, 2019

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Feb 5, 2019

I get your logic, but his GMAT score is almost a full 20 points above the class average. I've yet to see a 3.8GPA be below a class average (MIT has a 3.7 avg). His major was quantitative and with a GPA like he has, you can assume that the math classes were most likely A or in that range.

We will never know, but I don't think the raw application scores got him dinged. Could be in the recommendations, essays or something else.

Mar 22, 2019

I was at the open day for Oxford MFE in October and talked to the adcoms. If everything else of the application is great, they would be lenient on the GMAT requirement. So Q49 shouldn't have been the reason if you had great work experience. That's the impression they gave me because my quant score was lower than yours and they highlighted the companies I had internships at. I didn't apply in the end though.

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Feb 4, 2019

Probably dinged you for being American. On paper, you have more than what's required.

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Feb 5, 2019

Dude, fuck them. You have a 3.8GPA in a hard major. A great GMAT and a banking internship. Focus on school with less snobbery.

MIT is great. I'd apply to Vanderbilt as well as push for a large scholarship. I'd imagine you got dinged because of the Florida state school aspect. Consider yourself lucky.

Feb 6, 2019

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Mar 13, 2019

What do you mean by quant assessment, first time hearing that? Could you please elaborate

Mar 14, 2019

It's a new level of evaluation. 10-minute quant assessment after the 30-minute interview. It's basic though; does not go deep at all. It just tests the fundamentals of the math required to succeed in the program.

Tbh, anyone that's made it to the interview stage really should not miss a single question, let alone two.

Don't know if they'll bump up the difficulty in later years, but my advice is to stay calm and, with extreme care, make sure you get every question right - because there's a high chance that your competition will.

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Mar 14, 2019

If you got an invite at MIT, I'd consider you would have good chances at LSE and LBS. You have great stats, just get your interview down.

Mar 14, 2019

Already in at LBS. Had a much better interview experience. Still waiting on LSE though. Applied a bit late, but I should hear in a few days.

Would like to hear your opinion on LSE MSc Finance v LBS MFA. Just in case I have to make that decision.

Apr 11, 2019

Did you get offers from LSE and LBS?

Apr 11, 2019

Got, and accepted, an offer from LBS. No offer from LSE.

Feb 4, 2019

Hi
I am an Econ student at a top UK university (LSE/Camb/Oxford).

GMAT: 700+ (am yet to take it) & I'm averaging a First Class Honours (I think its the equivalent of a 3.8+ GPA but unsure)

Internships: I will be at an MM IB firm this Summer as my first internship in London. I did Spring weeks at DB and GS although I doubt these short experiences matter.

In terms of extracurriculars, I did a research project in finance in China last Summer and am a volunteer teacher at a disadvantaged school in London.

I know my university gives me a good shot of IB and other roles in London but I want to do an MFin/MFE in the US for the visa and to spend time living abroad. Schools like MIT/Princeton/Cornell would be ideal but I will also maybe apply to LSE/Oxford too.
My long term goal is to work in the US and I think an American MFin would be a good step to achieve this. Would I have a chance at top schools like Princeton/MIT? Even with just one Summer's work experience?

Thank you!

Feb 5, 2019

If you score in the mid 700's, I would think you'd be a very good fit for MIT. I don't really focus on Princeton since I consider it more of a MBA substitute. Historically, whenever I would look at resumes or the profile of students in the program, almost all I would see would have 3-5 years work experience.

That being said, the webpage only says you should have a couple of internships, which you do. I would encourage you to apply, but focus on your GMAT and make sure you get it high enough. Both US programs are very very competitive.

Feb 5, 2019

Thank you!

Jun 8, 2019

Sorry I don"t get it. I had to react.
What kind of reasoning is that?

You're willing to.discard your gold-plated top undergraduate UK education (/w First Class), and f*** up your branding with a US MSF?!

Why don't you just join an IB Analyst Class in London (shouldn't be hard given your target school + stats), stay there for 3 years, and only then apply for a H/S/W MBA, for which you'd be a top applicant (Tier 1 UK First Class, GMAT 700+, 3y IB exp).

I mean... Aren't you interacting with your current classmates? How can you be so oblivious on how you targeting a US MSF (US) makes no sense at all?!

Jun 8, 2019

Wow. I just wrote on a forum just to gather an understanding of my chances, it's not like I turned down an MBA from Stanford. Calm down, I have a feeling you're a little jealous of the situation I am in so instead of attacking anonymous someone with an innocent question on the internet, I think you should go and work on something more productive.

Feb 5, 2019

Hi TNA,

How would you rank the MSF programs (Oxford Masters in Financial Economics, LBS MFA, MIT MFin, LSE MSF/MSFE) if I am aiming for IBD post graduation?

Thanks in advance.

Feb 5, 2019
boomshockalocka:

Hi TNA,

How would you rank the MSF programs (Oxford Masters in Financial Economics, LBS MFA, MIT MFin, LSE MSF/MSFE) if I am aiming for IBD post graduation?

Thanks in advance.

If you want to stay in Europe, Oxford MFE is prolly the best (it's more quantitative than the other 2 and it is way tougher to get in), but LSE/LBS/OXF are in the same tier when it comes to IB (all great schools)
For US obviously MIT

(these are all top notch programmes, so if you get accepted by one of them go for it!)

Feb 5, 2019

I concur.

Feb 5, 2019

Thank you. However, I've heard that the OX MFE employment report is a bit lackluster compared to that of MIT MFin or LBS MFA. What would you say about that? And I've also heard that LBS MFA is tougher to get in than Oxford MFE.(I have a friend who got into both and chose LBS in the end and heard that a few MFE Class of 2019 did not get into LBS MFA.)

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Feb 6, 2019

Hi TNA,

I would be an international student and I am looking to get into IB or AM post MSF in the US. I applied to Rochester, SMU, WUSTL, BU, Vanderbilt, Baruch (haven't submitted app yet) and Duke (MQM: BA). Have received acceptances from SMU and Rochester so far. Rochester offered me a 60% scholarship as well after which I asked SMU to match the offer. Last Friday, they said that they would re-assess my application for scholarship. But I am really not sure if I should go with Rochester at all because they usually focus on sending their international students back to their home countries and I want to be working in the US.

Vanderbilt has rejected me so far and I am awaiting decisions for the rest.

Thank you, in advance.

Feb 6, 2019
Farwa-Ismail:

Hi TNA,

I would be an international student and I am looking to get into IB or AM post MSF in the US. I applied to Rochester, SMU, WUSTL, BU, Vanderbilt, Baruch (haven't submitted app yet) and Duke (MQM: BA). Have received acceptances from SMU and Rochester so far. Rochester offered me a 60% scholarship as well after which I asked SMU to match the offer. Last Friday, they said that they would re-assess my application for scholarship. But I am really not sure if I should go with Rochester at all because they usually focus on sending their international students back to their home countries and I want to be working in the US.

Vanderbilt has rejected me so far and I am awaiting decisions for the rest.

Thank you, in advance.

Can you pls share which apps for msf in the us are still open for international students?

Feb 7, 2019

As far as I remember, Baruch, Ohio State and Boston college still have their apps open for international students. There might be others as well but most close their apps for international students in January.

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Most Helpful
Feb 6, 2019

International with that scholarship. I'd go Rochester. SMU is great for Dallas and if you were domestic, I'd probably encourage you to look at SMU closer, but Rochester has a good brand both here and overseas. It's been around for a long time and has plenty of alumni, including a lot of international students who you can network with. It's relatively close to NYC I suppose and that scholarship brings the cost way down. Plus it's STEM.

Feb 12, 2019

Hi TNA,

I'm an international in a similar situation. I went to a non-target small lib arts college but I have good work experience. I graduated last year with Economics and Computer Science and currently working in MO in Oil & Gas sector. I think I was just late in finding my passion and now want to pursue finance.

I've been considering MSF at Fordham among the ones previously listed. What are your thoughts? I don't have stellar grades but its above a 3.0.

Feb 6, 2019

Hi TNA,
I would like to share my profile which is a bit long, sorry about that.
Background: International student (not EU), currently a student at a target/semi-target uni in the UK. Think Bristol, Bath, Durham, Warwick, studying Economics & Mathematics. I am currently on my 3rd year out of 4 in London doing a 12 month placement in AM in one of the largest private banks in Europe (so i will finish it summer 2019). Grade : 72% average after two years which transfers to GPA 4.
I have also passed CFA level 1 this December.
I really want to work in New York as soon as possible but i understand that is is very difficult given that i literary don't know anyone there.
In my mind there are two options, get a graduate job in a BB bank in London and then try to move internally to NY after some time. I believe i have relatively good chances to get a graduate job in a large bank in London, but again i don't have visa. Any thoughts about it?
Second option is to get top masters and try to get a job straight away in NY after it. I was considering LSE, LBS, Imperial , Oxbridge (if we are talking UK) but i don't know if then i will have a good chance to get a job in NY? I believe that i need to do master in USA (yes i will need to do GMAT, but i believe i can get >700), because recruiting there is heavily based on networking and i literally need to be there to meet people ( so even great UK Brand uni might not help). Based on my little research so far, most of the master programs in US are financial engineering, but i don't want to go heavy on maths. I think MIT has a program which is not very quantitative. What are my chances to get a top masters in finance in US? What programs do you think i should consider?
Should i even do masters now or go for the first option and do my best to get a graduate job in London and then move internally?
Eventually i want to end up in some L/S Equity, Special Situation hedge fund, so i was targeting IB or AM.

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Mar 22, 2019

No point doing an EMEA masters to try to recruit for the US.. best way forward is to re-apply to internships next year (LDN FT recruiting is unlikely to yield good results) and apply to masters programs as backups. Do your 1-2 years then try to get the nod for a lateral via L-1 to the US.

Mar 22, 2019

Thank for very much for ur advice! I agree that FT London recruiting
Is not likely to lead to good results because I haven't done any SA internship in IB and I believe most banks extend offers to summer analysts. I was thinking to apply for SA as a final year (so I will start applying this July for next year), but my main concern is that most or all banks say that SA is usually for a pernutimate year. Do you think I can still apply?

Feb 7, 2019

My advice would be to work in London or do a top UK MSF and work in London at a global bank. Transfer internally or professionally network and look to relocate.

Apply to MIT if you want as it is a free option. Other than that, you have USC, Vanderbilt and WUSTL as the main MSF's in the US with a top brand. USC is west coast focused so it wont solve your lack of a NY network. Vandy and WUSTL aren't close to NY either so same problem. And if you need to go back overseas, none will really help you outside the US.

You have work experience and a London network. You went to a UK school. Take the path of least resistance.

Feb 11, 2019

Thank you for your advice!

Feb 12, 2019

I have received an interview invite from LBS Master of Financial Analysis. I was wondering if there is anyone who can share their insights about the interview process. What kind of questions should expect? are there any situational/behavioural based questions? Do they reject a lot of people at the interview stage?
Profile :
Background:
GPA:3.36
Double Majors Accounting & Finance from a Top B-school in the country (Pakistan)
CFA L1, Candidate CFA L2 in June 2019
Exp:
I am working as an Analyst (corporate finance advisory) with clients in the GCC region.
duration: September 2018- present
Internship
1. MicroFinance Bank.
2. Multinational Transportation Company
3. Compliance intern at a local Asset management firm. managing RS-60Bn

Feb 13, 2019

I will let alumni comment, but rejection from the interview stage is going to be less than from the application stage. Have an articulate reason why LBS and be able to discuss your resume. Consider this a job interview without technical questions.

Feb 12, 2019

Hi TNA. Thank you for your insights.

My profile:
GMAT 700
GPA 3.7 from Baruch College in NYC (In the Honors program for the business school)
Major: Statistics and Quantitative (2)Minors: Mathematics & Finance/Economics
Internship: 2 Months for Bloomberg L.P doing risk analysis (not finance related)
Extracurriculars: Leadership positions in multiple finance clubs and elite programs, founder of financial quant/engineering club, community service for students with mental health disorders

I was searching for a MSF or MFE program but am not sure if I am qualified. I would love to attend MFE at Baruch, stony brook, NYU, or Cornell. Do you think I have a shot? What are your recommendations for me to apply to? What else can I do to give myself a better shot at these schools?

Thank you so much!

Feb 13, 2019

I'd consider you a strong applicant for most MFE programs. High GPA (in the Honors School) with a quant major/minor. Baruch is a respected and known school. Good EC's and some work experience with a known firm.

Apply where you want. You should be in the top bracket of applicants.

Feb 13, 2019

Hey TNA.

I'm not looking for a specific profile evaluation, but rather some advice on where to go!

I'm 22, Irish, graduating from a top Irish Uni, with a 770 GMAT.

I've been admitted to Oxford MFE, HEC MIF (with 20k scholarship), Notre Dame Business Analytics (30k+ scholarship), and have my interviews for both MIT MFin and MBan next week.

I've interned at JPM and have an internship at an infrastructure advisory investment bank this Summer. The goal is HF in quant strategy or similar (Citadel a main target for now).

I always had MIT first on my list and Oxford second, but the scholarships from the other two schools have turned my head. I'm open to working anywhere, initially thought London was most likely but definitely not against a move to the US.

Any thoughts or comments would be much appreciated!

Cheers,
D

Feb 13, 2019

MIT and Oxford are where you should try and go. HEC is a top school in Europe though, although I would consider their brand recognition to be lower than MIT and Oxford.

ND - Safety. Great school and brand, but not at the same tier as the others.

Feb 13, 2019

Thanks for the quick reply. Pretty similar line to my thinking, almost hoping for the reject from MIT to make the decision easier. A couple of other quick ones:

1) I know the Oxf vs MIT debate comes up all the time: any particular thoughts? Looking at HF/Quants long term, location doesn't really matter.

2) Advice on asking for scholarship money? MIT would set me back 100k plus all things considered - am I within my rights to play US Scholarship offers (ND) against them to try and get some cash? Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks again for the help!

Feb 14, 2019

Hi TNA! I am an international student from south Asia. I am looking for master's programs in Europe and USA at the moment and preparing for GMAT at present. How do you view MSF program at Texas A&M for Houston jobs and in Texas job market as a whole? Is it considered as a target school in Texas?

Feb 19, 2019

The Texas A&M program updated their MSF program a few years back. Used to be really a 5 year program for TAMU students. Now it is a full fledged MSF.

UT Austin is still the best Texas program, with TAMU, SMU and Tulane being the next tier for Texas placements. You'll find a TON of TAMU alumni in the state and I am sure there will be a variety of good on campus options. That being said, front office placements from this program will largely depend on you and how you network, interview and take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves.

Feb 18, 2019

Hi! I am an international student from Asia as the above. I have applied to UT Austin's MSBA and MSF to get a job in the States after finishing the program. However, I am lack of information of which industries or companies sponsor international students for a job, and thus still have not decided which program to choose. Can you share your thoughts?

Feb 19, 2019

Sponsorship will be difficult. We have a tight labor market and sponsoring students for traditional finance jobs is an added cost when there are plenty of domestic students to fill roles.

I know there were a couple posts on WSO recently talking about which banks sponsor. I'd cast a very wide net if I were you. Your goal is to get sponsored and stay in the states. The dream job might have to be a long term goal.

Feb 21, 2019

Hey TNA?
I'll share you my profile:
Junior @ Small Private School in PA (non-target)
Major: Finance Minor: Economics
GPA: 3.66/4.0 Major GPA 3.93/4.0
GMAT:720
Internship: Nonprofit one summer, spring small Private Equity, Summer local accounting firm
Extracirricular: 2 division3 sports (one in spring/ one in fall), Finance Club President, Intramural Ref, Tutor, History Club
I have no clue how I stack up against competitors, would like to break into IB/Consulting from one year program. What are chances at Vandy, UTA, WUSTL.? Should I apply in 1st round next year with current resume? Or I plan on taking CFA level 1 in December, assuming I pass and add that to the resume, should I wait and apply in later round?

Much appreciated

Feb 26, 2019

3.7 and a 720. Are you domestic? If so you are in at all those schools.

You have finance internships, great EC's, a GPA and GMAT that is higher than the class average, in a time when applications are down across the board.

Make sure your resume looks normal and you have good recommendations and your essays are coherent. Other than that, you are good to go.

Feb 26, 2019

I am domestic. Thank you for your help

Feb 22, 2019

Hey TNA,

Situation:

Ivey Business School HBA/ UWO Statistics dual degree
GPA around 3.7
quant GRE 166
no finance experience (may change this summer)
most relevant coursework for MFE/MFin programs except C++ and differential equations

Can i get into U of T MFE and UW MQF? How about top American programs?

Feb 26, 2019

Ivey is a good Canadian B school. You have a high enough GPA. I am not up on avg quant GRE scores for MFE programs, but I will assume it is good.

UoT might be tough unless you get that diff equations class. This is my gut talking and nothing factual. UT is a tough school and hard to get into. So I am basing this comment on that fact and the fact they would want you to have all the pre-req's before admission. I could be wrong.

My advice would be to check out Quantnet and ask this. Those guys know the MFE world well. As for American programs, we have a lot of them and I think from the reputation of your UG school as well as the stats you've mentioned, I would consider you a better than average candidate.

Feb 27, 2019

.

Mar 2, 2019

Do you have any news on any newly founded MSF programs in top schools? (In the US)

Thank you

Mar 3, 2019

Iowa has a relatively new program. Same for Oregon. Penn State has a main campus, FT MSF now.

The flow of new programs has slowed for a couple reasons.

1) A ton of schools already have programs now.
2) The economy is good and applications have been declining for these programs.

Grad school (MSF and MBA) tends to be more enticing when the economy sucks. Basically hide out for another year or two. This is why lower ranked MBA programs are seeing a huge decline in applications. The ROI just isn't there. As enrollment declined for these programs, schools came out with ton of specialized masters to try and offset this (MSF, MSM, MS Bus Analytics, etc).

Right now I think we are at the max for new programs. Just not enough new students wanting apply.

Mar 4, 2019

Thank you TNA, but i was mostly interested in top-20 schools, who might be planning to start offering specialized MSF degrees, besides Vandy, MIT, and Princeton.

Mar 4, 2019

For Corporate Finance consulting, which is better: MSF or MBA?

If MSF, which of the following ones? RSM, ESADE, SSE, HEC, CBS, Warwick

If MBA, which of the following ones? IESE, ESADE, Bocconi

Many thanks!

Mar 13, 2019

Thanks TNA for all the comments/posts about Villanova MSF, has really helped.
Have a quick question for pre-MSF

GPA: 3.6/4.0 GMAT:690 Campus Involvement: Prez of $2.5M Student Fund, part of University Endowment at non-target Goal: AM or IB post MSF, then MBA, then HF

Work This is where the question lies. I have interned for 18 months at a small ($5M) VC fund that does a good amount of consulting on the side. After graduation, if I stay for summer before MSF, would be (essentially since it is so small) a VP.
I also have an offer for a mid sized Sell-Side. Junior level, no responsibilities. However, much more networking opportunities.
Any advice on this? Would appreciate any thoughts and thanks!

Mar 14, 2019

Not sure the specific question, but I wouldn't put a VP title on my resume if I was applying to a MSF.

Frankly, I would just put analyst regardless of the MSF. If your goal is IB or whatever, you don't want to scare employers away.

Profile wise - looks strong. Good GPA and GMAT. Work experience is nice also.

Mar 22, 2019

Hello TNA,

Thanks for doing this thread, I've been checking this forum for relevant information on msf and you've been very helpful. I have been accepted to several msf programs, namely washu, Simon, jhu, Brandeis (35k). Unfortunately I was waitlisted at Vanderbilt, otherwise that would've been my top choice. If you were looking at these options, how would you weigh the pros and cons and pick a school to attend?

FYI, I'm an international student who would be happy to work in the States post-graduation, but that is not a must or a top priority for me as my long-term plan is to come back to my home country for career opportunities. Thanks in advance!

Mar 23, 2019

Hello TNA, thank you so much for all the valuable insights you provided.

I'm an international student currently working in the U.S., graduated 2 years ago from a non-target state school in NY, GPA 3.78, a dual major in Applied Math & Economics with a minor in Finance. I had some activities on campus like VP of finance club and hosted some club events on campus. I took GMAT 2 years ago for the 1st time, not well prepared and got 690, I'm aiming towards something around 740 if I decide to apply for a master.

Now I have almost 2 years of work experience but all in really small firms and not related to IB, I found my visa issue and alumni base really makes it almost impossible for me to get into IB, and I have only one year of OPT now. I'm planning to start my master program in fall 2020 or Fall 2021. My girlfriend is taking MSQF in Fordham and I found myself really not the guy for MFE.

Here are my questions: if I want to get into the financial industry (or more specific, IB), are there any master programs that are STEM certified other than MSF or MFE? If I choose among MSFs, could you please tell me if there are some programs that last for more than 1 year (like 1.5 years or 2 years)? Because I feel it would be impossible to take summer intern if it's a 1-year program.

Sorry for my long post, and thank you for your great help!

Apr 11, 2019

Hi TNA, Thanks for doing this.

I am 23 (24 in August) and want to pursue an MSF. I have a masters engineering degree (2.1) and work in a commercial function within O&G. I have wanted to move into finance ever since starting work but have failed with all my applications. Therefore I am considering the MSF.

I am currently studying towards CFA level 1 in June so do not have time to do GMAT for applications this year. My question is would it be worth attending a program I can get into without the GMAT (thinking mainly Cass, maybe UCL), or wait a year and take the GMAT and aim for top tier B schools in London. Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Apr 11, 2019

I don't think Cass or UCL are that bad. They'd definitely give you another shot at a career in finance. What is your practice GMAT? Assuming you get 700 or above, waiting might make sense if you can reasonably get into LBS or LSE.

Do realize that even with the MSF, breaking into finance will be difficult. I'd start networking now and getting feedback. Last thing you want is to get this degree and be in the same spot.

Apr 13, 2019

Hello TNA,

Thank you for doing these treads. I am finance professional with 5+ years of experience in accounting field. I want get a broader understanding of finance and build my carrier as a strategic manager. I am planning to apply to USF - Masters in Financial Analysis and Santa Clara University - Masters in Financial Analytics. I so you commenting on one of the posts that SCU's program is much better than USF's which was an old thread pertaining to 2013. Could you please advise based on the recent knowledge and experience is it still the same of has something changed? I am more concerned about the job opportunities each would provide post qualification.

FYI, I'm an international student who would be happy to work in the States post-graduation, Thanks in advance!

Apr 25, 2019

I don't particularly know which program is "better". Both are going to be strongest in the area they operate in (California/San Francisco area). I would consider them to be part time programs so if you get some type of company help with tuition they would be interesting.

May 3, 2019

Hi TNA,

Thanks for helping us here. I am Armenian(non-EU) and have an undergrad from American University of Armenia BA in Business Administration (GPA 3.9, Best Thesis award). I have some local internships (e.g. Central Bank of Armenia) and one year experience in a no-name local consulting firm. I have also founded my own business (unrelated with finance). I have received an offer from LSE MSF and Imperial MSF. After talking to some alums I am under the impression that finding a job in the UK as a non-EU is nearly impossible. My goal is to basically break into the finance industry ( I don't care much about the location). I am looking at three options now. First, to enroll at LSE and do my best to stay in the UK ( I consider my chances highly unlikely). Second, defer my offer for one year -> get some relevant experience (e.g. Big 4) and then pursue LSE with better chances of finding a job. Third, to reject my offer -> get relevant experience for one year and apply to schools in the US that offer STEM degrees. I will very much appreciate if you gave me some advice.

Sep 13, 2019

I'm sorry but those alums you talked to misled your judgment.

It is in fact much more difficult, for an international graduate, to secure a full-time offer in the US VS the UK.

There's even a dedicated topic here on WSO specifically outlining why.

I hope that you chose to enroll at LSE.

May 25, 2019

Hi TNA, I am in a dire need for profile evaluation. Thanks in advance!
Here is my background:
Law undergrad from a target University in India (Rank #3)
CGPA (after conversion)- 3.2/4
GMAT: Expecting 690-710

Internships:
1. Research Assistant at Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (Judge Business School)
2. Equity research intern at mid tier financial research firm
3. Legal intern at Securities and Exchange Board of India (Indian capital market regulator)
4. Ernst & Young (Indirect Tax dept.)
5. Legal intern at a corporate law firm
6. Legal intern at office of Additional solicitor general of India.

Courses:
1. CFA Investment Foundations
2. Preparing for CFA Level-I (December)

Published 4 articles (3 about macroeconomics, finance and behavioural economics and 1 about criminal law)

EC: Chief coordinator of University cultural fest, Treasurer of cultural committee and Editor for Trade law society)

I am looking for a college with strong placements in USA as I want stay and work there. No location preferences as such. Would most likely want to end up in corporate finance or asset management. Currently thinking of targeting following universities:
1. USC Marshal
2. UT McCombs
3. Vanderbilt
4. Boston College
5. UIUC
6. WUSTL
7. OHS
8. Rochester
9. IIT Stuart

    • 1
Sep 8, 2019

Hello guys,

I have a CGPA of 3.5 from an American university with a major in Economics and have had decent internship experience in finance, including 2 at small PE firms. I am currently preparing to give my CFA level 1 in December 2019.

I am planning to apply for the MSF programs to institutions in the US. Vandy, UT, BC, UVA & CMC are the schools I am planning to apply to for the 2020 intake in the 2nd Round.

I am giving my GMAT in the 4th week of October and wanted to know what minimum GMAT score should I be aiming for in order to get into most of the above UNIs. Also, I am very keenly looking to get into Vandy, so any suggestions pertaining directly to that would be much appreciated.

I am also looking for a placement in an IBD or PE Analyst position post graduation. Thus, any MSF program recommendations other than the ones above would be much appreciated.

Also, could you please help me rate the MSF programs mentioned above?

P.S. I am an international Student.

Sep 13, 2019

Hi, my profile:
GMAT 710; Q48,V40
CFA L1 cleared
Financial Research Associate in DE Shaw (1y now); 4m internship in buy side equity research in a big Indian company; also has 3 more 1m internships
BSc Economics from a private university in India (CGPA 3.53/4)
I'm targeting mainly LBS (MFA), LSE, ESSEC and HEC.
What do you think are my chances? Thanks in advance!

Dec 19, 2019

90% sure you're from nmims

Sep 23, 2019

Hi TNA,

I am hoping to do an MFA in london (LBS, LSE, Imperial). What is your honest opinion on my profile? Is it possible to overcome the very low GPA?

3.2 GPA, Econ/Math Major at Dartmouth/Columbia/UPenn 740 GMAT Summer internship at boutique IB, internship doing M&A at multinational corporation From a very small country with not much representation worldwide. My GPA suffered as my father got terminally ill and I had to split time between school full time and helping care for my father as we underwent treatment for 2 years.

Thanks so much

Sep 26, 2019

3.2 GPA Econ Major from a Mid-Tier Ivy
740 GMAT
Relevant finance summer internship (work) experience
Underrepresented citizenship

Come on man

I'll be honest & frank with you:
YOU'RE IN at any pre-experience Program offered in London.

Do yourself a favor: finish working on your essays (using a consultant, possibly) and apply Round 1 (before the R1 deadline) ASAP.

Oct 1, 2019

Thanks for the reply! I was just worried about the GPA as a lot of the program websites state 3.5 minimum requirement. Any knowledge of kids who have got in with less than 3.5?

Oct 1, 2019

Hi there ! Hope you are having a good week. My name is Meghana from India but currently residing in San Diego since march this year on a dependent visa. so, will be an international student.
I am looking to apply for my masters degree, fall 2020. My passion is to be working in either the Advisory, Asset management or the capital market side of the finance industry. Could you please help weigh down my options between MS Finance Vs MBA Finance. Which is the ideal/right course for me at this juncture of my career to reach my short term goals? Should i also consider doing a CFA, irrespective of which course i take up?
I was considering MS Finance as it would be a 10months - 1 year program plus, i would receive OPT that would enhance my chances of receiving a work permit visa. And with that thought process below are my shortlisted colleges :
In San Diego - UCSD and USD
Out of San Diego - Princeton and Vanderbilt
Ruled out MIT because it was heavily quant & tech based course work.

A brief work history : I worked in Goldman Sachs as an Operation Analyst with an exceptional career in the Accounting department for 3 years (Jun '15 - Jun '18), Program coordinator at an NGO (July '18 - Nov '18). I am more than happy to send across my resume over Gmail ID for references.
I am yet to write my GRE and get my credits converted with the World Education Service Center.

Any kind of advise and guidance/ perspective would be really appreciated.

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. Best Regards - Meghana

Oct 14, 2019

Hello guys,

I have a CGPA of 3.5 from an American university with a major in Economics and have had decent internship experience in finance, including 2 at small PE firms. I am currently preparing to give my CFA level 1 in December 2019.

I am planning to apply for the MSF programs to institutions in the US. Vandy, UT, BC, UVA & CMC are the schools I am planning to apply to for the 2020 intake in the 2nd Round.

I am giving my GMAT in the 4th week of October and wanted to know what minimum GMAT score should I be aiming for in order to get into most of the above UNIs. Also, I am very keenly looking to get into Vandy, so any suggestions pertaining directly to that would be much appreciated.

I am also looking for a placement in an IBD or PE Analyst position post graduation. Thus, any MSF program recommendations other than the ones above would be much appreciated.

Also, could you please help me rate the MSF programs mentioned above?

P.S. I am an international Student.

Nov 1, 2019

Hi TNA, thanks for doing this! I'm hoping you could give me some advice on which MSF/MSBA programs to target

Undergrad GPA: 3.68 from T50 state school

GMAT: 710
(how much does the quant/verbal split matter for these programs? I have two 710s and I'm not sure which one to use)

Work: Internship with a big 4 cybersecurity team

Extracurriculars:

Research assistant for a computational finance research paper
Academic fellow for one of my school's economic fellowship programs
Officer in a club that helps international students adjust to life in the US
Fluent native speaker of both Chinese and English

Schools I'm considering:

  1. USC
    a. MSBA
    b. MSF
  2. UCLA
    a. MSBA
  3. UT
    a. MSBA
    b. MSF
  4. CMU
    a. IT Management
  5. TAMU
    a. MSF
  6. LBS
    a. MFA
    b. MAM

Thanks in advance!

Nov 27, 2019

Hi TNA thanks for doing this. I won't graduate until fall 2020 but I am starting to look at programs now. I'm looking at Vandy, Villanova, WUSTL, Rochester, and will most likely submit an application to MIT.

domestic
non target tech school
690 GMAT
3.95 cumulative (accounting & finance double major)
Math classes through multivariable calc, stats, linear algebra.
D3 athlete, accounting and finance clubs, CFA research challenge competition
Internships at small commercial bank, F500 financial services (BO), and BB finance division (GS/MS/JPM) this upcoming summer.

Thank you!

Dec 7, 2019

Hi TNA,
I am a mechanical engineer from india with a gpa of 3.5/4 from not so know engineering school i have internship of 8 months working as financial and technical advisor at a company that handles government projects and i have not taken gmat yet but score will be in range of 690-700. I am planning on applying for the msf course in 2020.
My target schools are
1. Wstul
2. Bentley
3. Simon msf
4. Fordham msgb
5. Stevens mfe
Please suggest me which colleges out of these will accept me as i want to work in ib or pe in nyc area so in order to get a opportunity in nyc which colleges out of the above are good and do you suggest any other colleges please let me know

Thankyou

Dec 7, 2019

Hey TNA! Great thread you have here. I was looking for some advice as in where I could possibly get in for MFin/mfe in the UK/USA. I had LSE, LBS, MIT, Yale (their new asset management course), NUS, Oxford, and Vandy on my mind.

Profile

20 year old male, penultimate year student
Indian
77% marks(~first class) from India's ranked 1 undergrad program for business
GMAT 720+(expected)

Internships

Asset Management at a BB
FinTech startup (strategy role, worked directly with the CEO who was a partner at Morgan Stanley, he is also willing to write a letter of recommendation for me)
Domestic wealth management fund
Domestic infrastructure company (executive assistant to the MD)

I have also cleared my CFA level 1

Any help from absolutely anyone will be highly appreciated!

Dec 19, 2019

You sound like a strong international candidate. Good marks, solid work experience. LSE would be a good fit. NUS, sure. Vanderbilt, I think you'd be strong. They will like your work experience. They are selective with their international admits though. MIT, maybe.

All the marks you have look good, a lot will depend on the class strength.

Dec 19, 2019

@TNA
Thanks a lot for your opinion.

What do you think of my chances at Princeton/Oxford?

Would you recommend any other university?

Any help from anyone will be appreciated.

Jan 13, 2020

@Starfall could u pls review?

  • Prospect in PE - Other
Dec 15, 2019

Hey TNA. I was looking at possible MSF programs that could lead to a IB job at a BB/Strong MM firm. Not really interested in MFE or anything in the UK, outside of maybe LBS because I know they can place in the US at HL. So I am basically targeting Vandy and maybe a few others.

Profile

21 year old male, senior non-target studying finance (top 75 school)
White
3.85 GPA, 4.00 Finance GPA
GMAT 690 (I havent even started studying so this might be a reach)

Internships
(Junior) Leveraged Finance at a MM
(Sophomore) Equity Research at a small hedge fund
(Sophomore) Extern at school's endowment

Extracurriculars
Worked 2-3 jobs throughout college
Finance competitions: I won $500k in a trading competition and was top 3/450 in a well known hedge top competition. First place in a valuation competition.

Have GREAT references from professors, dean of school, past employers, etc.

Dec 19, 2019

In at Vandy. Great GPA. Good enough GMAT. Work experience is solid. US student. Ask for some money or a fellowship.

Dec 15, 2019

Hi @TNA , thank you so much for doing this!
Could you give me some advice?

I am looking to change sectors and get into IB (London/NY).
Background: Age - 24, Male, B.Com (Hons.) - 79% , CFA L3 passed, GMAT - 750 (Q50V42)

1 year at Barclays as finance analyst followed by 2 years at Teach For India (NGO -Education) where I led a class of 58 students and few other programmes.

I wanted to know that which MSF/MFE/MFin programmes are best suited to land a job in IB (NY/London), given my background?
Programmes I am looking at:
MSF/MFin/MFE at Columbia, Princeton, MIT, LBS.
Should I add/remove any schools i the list?
Or am I being too ambitious? If yes, which schools should I look at?

Lastly, would MBA be a better degree to make such a career-path switch or is MFE/MFin sufficient (assuming that in both cases one needs to network insanely and to acquire the necessary skillset)?
P.s. going out on a limb and asking for too much here: In case a MBA is better suited degree for me, could you enlist the schools (for IB) I should look at or point me toward someone who could do so?

Dec 19, 2019

Do an MBA. You have what, 3 years of experience. You have the charity aspect of the application checked with the NGO. You have CFA L3 done and just waiting on your charter. Top marks in UG. I'd do one or two more years work experience and do a top MBA. Your GMAT is strong.

Columbia and Princeton are all fine MFE type programs. LBS would probably want more finance experience for their MFIN, but not sure. MIT is all over the place with who they admit, but I think you'd stand a good chance.

Issue is you will still most likely come in as an analyst. You could easily do an MBA and come in as an associate. You have the stats and the background.

Dec 20, 2019

Hi TNA,

Any insight you have on my candidacy is greatly appreciated.

-I (22M) just finished undergraduate this December (1 semester early) at a decent, but non-target undergraduate business school just outside of Boston.
-I have taken basic statistics, multivariate and vector calculus, discrete and continuous probability, econometrics/regression analysis, an introductory python course, and four graduate level finance courses (investments, advanced topics in corporate finance, international finance, and derivatives).
-Was in accelerated MSF program, but school's master's program is not fantastic and recruiting is about the same as undergraduate (not great) - will likely not mention
in applications, will simply say I was permitted based on my academic performance to take graduate level courses.
-I have a strong background in excel (currently improving on macros and VBA) and am in the process of improving my ability with python.
-While being advised by a professor at my school, I have completed an academic research paper in economics, which has the potential to be published
-I am currently a research assistant for an economics professor at my school who also does research at Harvard (this professor is also advising me on my own research project)
-I have worked as a project manager through my school's main community service organization, primarily working with low-income children in after school settings

My stats:
-710 GMAT (46Q, 42V, 8 IR, 6 AW) - I know my quantitative score isn't particularly impressive.I hope my academic background in math helps make up for this.
-3.99/4.00 GPA --> My primary major is Economics-Finance and my second major is "Quantitative Perspectives" which is pretty much just math. I have gotten an "A" in all but one of my courses throughout college.
Honors: in my school's honors college, in my school's honor society, Beta Gamma Sigma (undergraduate business honor society), Omicron Delta Epsilon (undergraduate economics honor society),

Work Experience:
2018-3 months at relatively small wealth management firm
-Did mostly ad hoc stuff, researched into specific companies' financials, quarterly calls, and other miscellaneous news
2017-3 months in an accounting position at a small firm
-Reconciled cash payments and receipts, placed orders through EDI software, etc.
-Spent Summer 2019 doing data work for my research project and taking classes. I am looking for internships in Spring, as I will no longer be in school.

I am primarily looking at programs in Boston, but I am also open to programs in New York and some other individual programs.

The programs I have in mind are: BC, MIT, Vanderbilt, Georgetown, and WUSTL. If you think I should consider any other programs, please let me know.
I appreciate any opinions or insight you have to offer.

Jan 8, 2020

In at all schools. Competitive at MIT. Great scores.

Jan 9, 2020

Thank you for the feedback

Dec 26, 2019

Hi TNA, thank you for doing this!

Here's my profile:

  • GPA: 3.3/4.0 at a lower-tier Ivy (think Dartmouth, Cornell, Brown) as an Economics major with okay quantitative coursework (stats, finance theory, econometrics, data science/analytics)
  • GMAT: Aiming for 720+
  • Internships: S&T at a lower-tier BB, legal intern at a US federal agency, intern at small asset/wealth management firm
  • ECs: Investment club, number of mentorship/volunteering programs, pre-law org (leadership role, student govt.

I should be able to get solid references and write quality essays. How decent do you think my shot is at schools like LSE (MFin), Vandy (MSF), and NYU (MSQF)? Should I even consider trying to get into schools like MIT (MFin) and Princeton (MFin)? Also, I don't intend on applying until the next cycle, I'm wondering if it would be a significant detriment to my application if my first-year work experience out of college isn't super high-flying (still haven't completely figured out where I'm working yet).

Jan 8, 2020

The ivy brand will help. GPA is fine, not helping or hurting. GMAT will decide your fate. MFE programs - i'd say you could get into some of them, but would need to beef up your quant scores. Some of the programs have bootcamps for students who comes from a non-quant back ground. Those would be best for you.

Jan 3, 2020
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