Profile evaluation for Oxford MFE/Imperial MSc Finance

A087's picture
Rank: Monkey | 30

Hi guys! I'm 21/F from India and I'm planning to apply for the MFE program at Oxford either this November or maybe next. My undergrad was Bsc Statistics (highly quantitative course) from one of the top 10 colleges in India. My GPA is 7.5/10 and GRE 323 (163 quant 160 verbal). I've had two internships - one of them was in investment banking and the other was with the branding team of Ernst and Young. I would also be taking the CFA Level 1 exam this December.
Currently I have two options -
I have an offer from BCG Knowledge for a knowledge analyst role in the private equity practice (it's a back office supporting role)
I have an offer to intern at a VC firm, however it's not a very big fund.

1) which of the above two options will increase my chances of getting into Oxford/Imperial and then IB/VC post masters? I haven't heard of anyone switching from knowledge analyst to IB/VC :|
2) what are my chances of getting into Oxford/Imperial with the given scores and profile in general?

Let me know what you guys think!

Comments (20)

Jun 27, 2018

Your profile seems strong for both and as for career I would focus on the VC fund as I feel it sells better than BCG Knowledge for IB/VC. You also have to see which you prefer between Oxford and Imperial; both place well in London.

Jun 27, 2018

Thanks a lot! However the VC fund isn't very known, I hope that's not a problem?
I'm not a UK or EU citizen, so getting placed in London seems a little tough. Any idea on which one is better known outside Europe - Oxford or Imperial?

Jun 27, 2018

The fund size shouldn't be too much of an issue as long as you sell it well. Internationally I would say Oxford.

Jun 27, 2018

Beware that it will be very challenging to land an IBD/PE role in London with only one application season.

From my experience of having studied at a UK university, only BB provide sponsorship for non-EU visas. Even companies that you might expect be large enough to sponsor, like Deloitte, sometimes don't. So you'd mostly limit yourself to BBs and MFs. It'd be very challenging to land a FT role at such firms in this coming early autumn (I assume this is for the '18/'19 academic year?) with no proper previous experience in IB/PE. If you instead apply for an SA role, you might run into visa issues because it is significantly easier to gain tier 2 visa while you're already in the U.K. (ie on a Student visa) as opposed to applying from outside the U.K. the year after you finish your studies and SA.

This is not to say that it can't work, but approach it with some scepticism. Ever since the new visa regulations in early 2010's the proportion of international students in the U.K. that stay to work has plummeted.

Jun 27, 2018

Realised I skimmed your question too fast. Depending on your IB internship FT recruitment could work -- and not sure how VC funds treat visas.

Jun 27, 2018

I would be applying either for the '19/'20 academic year or '20/'21 Going to work in my home country for a bit before going ahead with my masters.

I'm more concerned with this - if I take up the BCG Knowledge offer, work for a bit and then go for my masters, is the background going to be a disadvantage when applying to IB roles?

Jun 29, 2018

All I can say is that when I applied to IB mentors advised me to omit my back office spring week at an American BB, to avoid being pigeonholed as back office people. In hindsight I'm glad I did.

If you can't spin the BCG role as anything but a support role, the VC experience makes more sense to me.

Jun 27, 2018

Interesting point. Thank you for your input.

But considering OP's target programs (Oxford Said MFE & Imperial M.Sc. Fin.), isn't worrying about tier-2 visa sponsorship, student visa extention (for SA strategy), the job of the career service.

Or at least, should any non-eu international application to UK programs worry this much how to best prepare for visa issues post-graduation?

This sounds pretty tough.

For example, does someone know if EB (Centerview, Evercore, PJT) also sponsor non-EU hires?

Jun 27, 2018

Lots of banks outside of BBs sponsor.

    • 1
Jun 27, 2018

I know for sure that all the EBs mentioned above sponsor.

    • 1
Jun 27, 2018

Why not include LBS, LSE in your list of target programs?

Jun 27, 2018

I've heard that LBS needs more than a year or two of work ex.
LSE prefers GMAT over GRE. I already have a GRE score and I don't think I'll be able to commit enough time to study for GMAT and ace it.

Jun 28, 2018

GRE is still accepted. Apply with GRE score to the MFA.
It looks like LBS has developed the reputation of being less selective that the remaining of the UK's top M.Sc. Programs (Oxbridge, LSE).

Given the school's global & UK brandname and its reportedly strong alumni base & career outcomes, it'd truly be a disservice to yourself, imho, if you skip applying to it.

Jun 27, 2018