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Critique my Profile + University List

Hello!

I'm an international applicant from India and I will be applying during the 2022-2023 cycle. I'm currently looking at Quantitative/Computational Finance M. Sc. degrees in the US and UK. I am a final-year B. Sc. Statistics student. My current CGPA is 9.44 and I'm sure I can bump it to a 9.5 before applying. I am going to give the GMAT in a couple of months and I'm expecting a 720+ score. I took a mock test before starting my prep that put me in the 670-700 range. I have taken Calculus, Linear Algebra, and Differential Equations courses, and also a Investment Analysis and Portfolio Management elective in my fourth semester. I have experience with Machine Learning and intermediate knowledge of python. Basic knowledge of MS SQL and Java.

Rough Summary of the rest of my profile:

Certifications:

NISM Research Analyst
(This exam is a required certification for Equity Research Analysts and includes the basics of securities and analysis.)

Data Science and Machine Learning Bootcamp- Udemy
(I'm pretty sure this won't have much impact but just adding it in.)

Internships:

Data Engineering Intern at a midsize IT Services company that's based in the US. A great relationship with my manager and expecting a stellar LOR. Currently working on an ML Project.

Market Research and Social Media Marketing Intern at a small start-up.

Extra-Curriculars:

Mathematics Tutor at an NGO
Teach for India Campus Chapter Leader
Leadership position in a college fest

Other Components of my App:

I'm expecting average to good LORs from my teachers and a glowing one from my current manager. I am also confident in my ability to write great SOPs and Essays.

Target Programs:

M. Sc. Quant Finance at Rutger's, USA

Master's in Financial Engineering at University of Reading, UK

MS in Mathematical Finance & Financial Technology at Boston University, USA.

Reach Programs:

M. Sc. Computational Finance at CMU, USA

M. Sc. Mathematical and Computational Finance at Oxford, UK

M. Sc. Financial Economics at Columbia, USA

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I'd appreciate any feedback about my profile and choice of programs. I'm aware that my application might not be the strongest so I am currently working on some projects related to FinTech and looking for research internships.

I forgot to mention, I'm not going to apply to any safeties. If I don't get in, I'll gain some work ex and re-apply. This is a huge financial commitment for me and my family + the job scenario for intls isn't great so I don't want to attend a lower ranked school and risk not getting a good job that will help me pay back my loans.
 
I think you're selling yourself a little short, you have more than a decent profile. Your target programs seem to be slightly lower ranked than I expected. Since you have a strong mathematics (Stats) background , why not apply to UChicago's Financial Mathematics or NYU's Mathematics of Finance programs? If you already haven't , look at the tracker applications for some of the top 10 ranked programs and see where you stand. I believe you definitely should be aiming higher.
I also suggest taking the GRE over the GMAT. It's more widely accepted, helps with your applications.
The rest will come down to how well you can communicate your ideas through your SoP and video essays. Also, are you from an ISI or any other highly ranked statistics institute?
All the best for your applications!
 
You really made my day. Thank you! I have seen a lot of exceptional profiles on QuantNet and Reddit so I felt like I didn't stand that much of a chance at higher-ranked programs.
I am considering giving the GRE, your comment was just the nudge I needed. I decided to give the GMAT because I'm scared of GRE vocab haha. Guess I'll have to conquer that.
I'm not from ISI, but I attend a pretty well-known college affiliated with Mumbai University.
 
The exceptional candidates are the ones that can get in anywhere. It's intimidating, yes but that shouldn't stop you from trying. Give it a shot, you'll be surprised what you end up with.
You still have some time before the cycle for Fall '22 opens up, you'll have plenty of time to brush up on vocabulary. The quant part shouldn't be too hard for you, so aim for 168+. Feel free to DM me for any further questions! :)
 
I am considering giving the GRE, your comment was just the nudge I needed. I decided to give the GMAT because I'm scared of GRE vocab haha. Guess I'll have to conquer that.
Most programs don't even care about the verbal on your GRE as long as it is not ridiculously low. I gave the GMAT and really had very limited options to apply to, don't make that mistake. If you are sure it is MFE programs you want to apply to, give the GRE.
 
"Average to good LOR"? Either make sure they are glowing or don't send them in. Work with the person writing it, coach them the points you want to hit. Nobody wants to read a letter of recommendation saying "this dude is average" anywhere in life.
 
The exceptional candidates are the ones that can get in anywhere. It's intimidating, yes but that shouldn't stop you from trying. Give it a shot, you'll be surprised what you end up with.
You still have some time before the cycle for Fall '22 opens up, you'll have plenty of time to brush up on vocabulary. The quant part shouldn't be too hard for you, so aim for 168+. Feel free to DM me for any further questions! :)
Thank you! I will definitely take you up on that if I have any other questions :)
 
Most programs don't even care about the verbal on your GRE as long as it is not ridiculously low. I gave the GMAT and really had very limited options to apply to, don't make that mistake. If you are sure it is MFE programs you want to apply to, give the GRE.
When I first decided to apply, all of the programs on my list either didn't need test scores or accepted GMAT scores. But since then a lot has changed, so I will be taking the GRE now. Thank you!
 
"Average to good LOR"? Either make sure they are glowing or don't send them in. Work with the person writing it, coach them the points you want to hit. Nobody wants to read a letter of recommendation saying "this dude is average" anywhere in life.
Haha I didn't mean that the LORs would say I'm average. I meant that they would say some pretty nice things, but nothing special or out of the ordinary. I'm planning on sending the profs a copy of my CV and some information about each of the programs I'm applying to.
 
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