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MFE chances straight out of undergrad?

I'm about to graduate with a degree in Engineering from a top 5 program that has excellent grad school placement. I'm looking into applying to places like Baruch, Columbia, Berkeley, Cornell, etc. Do I have a shot at these programs?

Accumulative GPA: 3.21 (school has significant grade deflation)

3rd and 4th year GPA: 3.56

GRE: 800 Quantitative, 580 Verbal

Project Experience:
8 month long mechanical engineering research project for Northrop Grumman
4 month long structural dynamics research project for Space Systems/Loral

National awards from high school

Python, C++, Matlab, STATA, ANSYS, Mathematica, SolidWorks, Pro/ENGINEER, CFdesign, Minitab, Simulink, Labview
 
Does it matter if anybody says yes or no? Would that stop you from applying?

It might actually. I'm not even sure if I want to pursue MFE in general because I'm not entirely certain the exit ops would be all that great for someone like me with no work experience. I'm trying to get a feel for what my chances would be so I can apply to a range of programs (safeties, matches, reaches).
 
Does it matter if anybody says yes or no? Would that stop you from applying?


I come from a similar background as him (undergrad wanting to go directly to an MFE program), I guess it isn't so much "will we get in" as it is "are we barking up the right tree here".

I remember when I first joined the site, I was under the (wrong) assumption that a few years of financial industry experience was needed. Clearly, it's not and this forum set me straight. What made me think that was a lot of MBA programs require work experience.


With that said, you're completely right - there's nothing stopping us from applying and I plan on coming out with guns ablaze when I apply next year.
 
I come from a similar background as him (undergrad wanting to go directly to an MFE program), I guess it isn't so much "will we get in" as it is "are we barking up the right tree here".

I remember when I first joined the site, I was under the (wrong) assumption that a few years of financial industry experience was needed. Clearly, it's not and this forum set me straight. What made me think that was a lot of MBA programs require work experience.


With that said, you're completely right - there's nothing stopping us from applying and I plan on coming out with guns ablaze when I apply next year.

But how much of a disadvantage will we be at compared to applicants with prior work experience? What are the exit opps like for people like us assuming the job market picks up by 2011/2012?
 
But how much of a disadvantage will we be at compared to applicants with prior work experience? What are the exit opps like for people like us assuming the job market picks up by 2011/2012?

Unfortunately, it seems like we don't really know until we get there.
 

alain

Older and Wiser
what is exactly "exit opps"? It's not really clear for me what you are asking for.

But how much of a disadvantage will we be at compared to applicants with prior work experience?

If you are any good, there is no disadvantage.

---------- Post added at 12:36 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:35 AM ----------

Unfortunately, it seems like we don't really know until we get there.

That is completely correct.
 
I meant jobs upon graduation from an MFE program for people with no prior experience in finance. I was just under the impression that it was harder from what I've read on other forums. Although, I did notice that there was little difference between the graduates at Baruch with and without prior experience for the last year.
 

alain

Older and Wiser
I was just under the impression that it was harder from what I've read on other forums.
So, you can take couple of things from this forum. Number one, hopefully, your impression has changed by now. Number two, this forum is probably more grounded and objective than the other forums you have visited

Although, I did notice that there was little difference between the graduates at Baruch with and without prior experience for the last year. <!-- / message -->

that is a good thing for people like you if you make it into the Baruch program.
 

Joy Pathak

Swaptionz
But how much of a disadvantage will we be at compared to applicants with prior work experience? What are the exit opps like for people like us assuming the job market picks up by 2011/2012?


Your exit options? when the job market picks up?

You want to leave the industry, when things get better? lol
 
I was under the impression that for MFE/MSMF, previous work experience helps, but is not that important as it is for MBAs. Most graduates are straight out of school.
 
I did some research on the Carnegie Mellon computational finance program and it seems that job placement upon graduation of this master's is not correlated with work experience prior to entering the master's. There is a summer internship while studying at Carnegie Mellon and that is highly correlated to job placement upon graduation.

I just had an interview at CMU for the MSCF. I don't have prior work experience, nevertheless I made it to the interview process. So my understanding is that there is a possibility of getting admitted into the program right out of undergraduate.

Hope that this helps a little.
 
I did some research on the Carnegie Mellon computational finance program and it seems that job placement upon graduation of this master's is not correlated with work experience prior to entering the master's. There is a summer internship while studying at Carnegie Mellon and that is highly correlated to job placement upon graduation.

I just had an interview at CMU for the MSCF. I don't have prior work experience, nevertheless I made it to the interview process. So my understanding is that there is a possibility of getting admitted into the program right out of undergraduate.

Hope that this helps a little.

What did they ask in the interview? Was it technical?
 
not technical at all. Most of the questions were on my resume, background and future goals.

They are looking for someone that has either a strong background in math, programming or finance. If you have them all you are in good shape.

They want to make sure that you are capable of presenting yourself in a professional manner.

And they want to know that your goal is to become a quant. If you don't have prior work experience you somehow need to indicate that you know what you are getting yourself into and why.

Be prepared to answer questions on weaknesses of your resume, and things you have mentioned in your essays.

They will also ask you about your applications to other programs. Like...where else did you apply and where have you been admitted. I am not sure if this affects your admission chances. I think they ask this to figure out who they will award with scholarship.

Let me know if you have any more questions.
 

roni

Cornell FE
I did some research on the Carnegie Mellon computational finance program and it seems that job placement upon graduation of this master's is not correlated with work experience prior to entering the master's. There is a summer internship while studying at Carnegie Mellon and that is highly correlated to job placement upon graduation.

I just had an interview at CMU for the MSCF. I don't have prior work experience, nevertheless I made it to the interview process. So my understanding is that there is a possibility of getting admitted into the program right out of undergraduate.

Hope that this helps a little.
nice job...
Can you share your profile ?

thanks.
 
i'd be happy to share my info with you. although, I have not received the decision yet(I could have been rejected) and I am not sure how my profile will be helpful to you. I do not know exactly what it is that may make them reject or admit a person besides the things i mentioned in my earlier post.

GRE: 800 Quant, 310 Verbal, 4.0 Analytical

undergraduate GPA 3.71/4.00 with 180 credits (6 years worth of classes) from the University of Maryland

B.S. in Mathematics (Statistics track)
B.A. in Economics

Graduated Cum Laude and with departmental honors.

Wrote a research paper on a topic in finance.

Had an internship at Merrill Lynch.

Let me know if you have any more questions.
 
Questions...

I am currently a junior in EE. Just wondering if anyone got into MFE program directly after graduated from undergraduate? I want to know if it is possible to do MFE without a graduate degree or working experience.
 
There are so many people who get in to MFE right after their undergrad. I am one such example. For MFE, all you need is good math and programming skills coupled with knowledge in finance. However, few give admissions even if you do not have any of these.

Best,
Bharadwaj
 
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