# Baruch MFEMy experience with Baruch MFE admission process

#### Advait

I would like to provide a review of the Baruch MFE application review process based on my experiences :

I am convinced that the whole admission philosophy is a sham from my application review process! It is basically an ingeniously nefarious way to suck in potential applicants' 135 USD as application fees by having them believe they have a semblance of a chance when most of them quite frankly do not and it also helps them to beef up their admission statistics besides the increased revenue.

On inquiring about my application, I was told by one of the members of the Admissions Committee that they were looking to interview ~100 applicants for round 1 and ~50 for round 2. Now, why would he indicate that they are assessing applications with a preconceived interview 1 and interview 2 slot size if it weren't true?! And if it is true, it is in direct contradiction with the Baruch MFE admissions' policy as they claim it! Essentially given your admission policy, a hypothetical scenario where, say, all 700 applicants apply, go through 1st round of interviews and go through 2nd round of interviews and accept the offer to create a batch size of 700 should have a finite non-zero positive probability. But, this is most certainly not the case.

For the record, my interviewer was very happy with my "personality" as he could gauge it over the phone and he unfortunately could not come up with an incontrovertible reason as to why my application was denied. Apparently, every application after the 1 st interview is put to vote and he recommended a "Yes" and told the Committee that "I answered all the questions correctly". He said that he does not know why the majority voted a "No".

I have all pre-requisites covered with stellar grades (straight As from an Ivy League and a top institute in India) and there is almost no room for the Admissions Committee to have rejected my application given their application review process as stated on their website.

Moreover, I've been directed towards another forum called chasedream.com unfortunately after my first round interview, a Chinese education forum, where all the questions asked in Interview 1 and Interview 2 are available in great detail with perfect solutions. Also, one interviewee was so snobbish that he wrote the equivalent of : "If you don't understand the question since the interviewer has a weird accent, just answer the questions in the order I've written since he asks the questions in the same order!"
Regardless of whether this is actually true or not, this is retardedly hilarious! The questions moreover haven't even changed over the years! This is ridiculous! Are the admission committee members naive or just downright lazy?!! I did not pay 135 USD to sign up for this biased ludicrous application review process.

Consider this :

As per the Baruch MFE website, I believe the right way to interpret the admissions philosophy is that if you have completed all the prerequisites with a minimum of B (this is how they describe the requirements of a satisfactory application), have satisfactory communications skills, are a good fit to the program and do well on the interviews, you should be offered admission. Correct me if I am wrong!

Now, do you really believe that of all the applicants who apply, only 6% (apparently it's just 2-3% if you've not done the pre-MFE program before hand since the remaining 3% of candidates come from applicants who've completed the pre-MFE program as stated by Lyosha who is a Baruch MFE alum) of the applicants satisfy the above conditions (given that in the case of an applicant who can understand Mandarin/Cantonese, the probability that they do well on the interviews ~1 if they do a bit of research!)

#### Jose T

##### Rutgers MSMF
Adavit - I read your posts on the other Baruch thread and this one.

I think you are overreacting. I think your interpretation of the Baruch's admission policy is not the same as the administration's interpretation of their own policy. You have read their policy literally and devised a logical scenario in which your literal reading of what's on their website must be 'false' in some sense based on your experience.

I really doubt anyone is running a scam at $135 per ticket for some hundreds of patsies. That would not be profitable enough to be worth anyone's time. I have heard of people claiming Chinese applicants 'gaming the system' and I am sure websites like what you claim exist. However, based on my experience, I have a simpler explanation for a large Chinese presence in US quantitative graduate schools: their universities produce excessively qualified candidates. There are many posts on this websites and others like wilmott and nuclearphyance on the dangers on getting a MFE and the relative value of brand name. I do suspect this website has a pro-Baruch bias (and the same has been commented elsewhere on the net) but I have no connection to the program so it doesn't really bother me. Anyway, after reading your posts, I felt sympathetic to you. You're spending too much time and heated energy regarding a university that ultimately is never going to be relevant to you. It's possible they treated you unfairly. But so what? There many worse injustices than being denied admission to an MFE. Let it go. #### Daniel Duffy ##### C++ author, trainer However, based on my experience, I have a simpler explanation for a large Chinese presence in US quantitative graduate schools: their universities produce excessively qualified candidates. Indeed! I have trained quite a few Chinese guys and gals at MSc/MFE level on several continents and countries and in banking (mostly C++ and also PDE). Hard workers I found and they work until the job is finished! Very polite and cheerful too. They have a good grasp of C++. I found that the Chinese girls tend to be particularly good as well in C++. No problems. http://www.datasimfinancial.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=74 #### pruse Advait, if I were you I'd count myself lucky for having been spared the difficulties inherent in actually attending the program. #### Advait I really doubt anyone is running a scam at$135 per ticket for some hundreds of patsies. That would not be profitable enough to be worth anyone's time.

Have you heard about the normalcy bias ? I recommend you read about it. Secondly, it would be profitable for Baruch MFE's time since they get to earn 135 USD by rejecting an application in a couple of minutes!

Anyway, after reading your posts, I felt sympathetic to you. You're spending too much time and heated energy regarding a university that ultimately is never going to be relevant to you. It's possible they treated you unfairly. But so what? There many worse injustices than being denied admission to an MFE. Let it go.

If you feel sympathetic for me, I'd like to politely ask you to stop feeling so. I'm merely spending my time to warn future potential applicants about the program based upon my experience. I already have a six figure salary job in a country with no taxes and if I want to enter the quant space, I'll probably do so in India.

I have a simpler explanation for a large Chinese presence in US quantitative graduate schools: their universities produce excessively qualified candidates.

I disagree! I, however, admit that on average, Chinese students are significantly more sincere than Americans and/or Indians. However, from what I have observed, they also have a greater tendency of unethically helping each other on assignments, projects and take-home exams unlike Americans and/or Indians in general but it does not bother me. I am completely neutral towards them personally.

#### Jose T

##### Rutgers MSMF
Adavit - Feeling sympathetic towards you does not mean I pity you. It means I understand where you're coming from.

If you wanted to warn others about your experience, you have done so repeatedly. I don't think it is productive to comment further and just from an empathetic reading of your posts, it appears to be coming from some sour grapes. If that's not the case, you may want to re-read your own writing and question yourself why you are coming across that way, not just to me but to basically everyone who has replied to you.

#### Advait

I think you are overreacting. I think your interpretation of the Baruch's admission policy is not the same as the administration's interpretation of their own policy. You have read their policy literally and devised a logical scenario in which your literal reading of what's on their website must be 'false' in some sense based on your experience.

They're most welcome to clarify what do they mean and how have I incorrectly misinterpreted the writings on their website. I'm all for transparency and I'm genuinely not hypocritical about it.

Do you still believe I am over-reacting after the stuff you read ?

#### Jose T

##### Rutgers MSMF
Yes, I still think you're overreacting. Baruch could be 100% in the wrong and I would still think you're overreacting. This is just one small school that admits a tiny class each year. Honestly, I just don't think it's worth your time and you have better options (your best one may be to go to no university based on what you told me about your job).

To a limited extent, your providing some info for the newcomers. But you served that function about 5 or 10 posts ago. I think you're obsessing a little now, to be honest. I don't have any stake in Baruch; I don't care if their reputation goes up or down. I'm just saying that as someone who's fixated on stuff like this in the past and knows it's not helpful to the person doing the fixating.

But you don't have to listen to me. You can continue posting about Baruch; it's not a big thing.

#### darth

after attending an ivy league...why did you even consider baruch...

#### themfeapplicant

Jose Thomas: "There are many posts on this websites and others like wilmott and nuclearphyance on the dangers on getting a MFE and the relative value of brand name."

Could you please add some direct links to these discussions (on this and other forums if possible) for more information. I am not asking in relevance to this thread, just for my personal benefit to decide on which program to go to from my current admits and I think it will be informative and useful to read and be aware. I bear no bias for or against any program. Just for getting a better picture for me personally that's all.

#### Advait

after attending an ivy league...why did you even consider baruch...

I applied to multiple schools including Baruch which is I believe was a safe strategy. There are Baruch MFE alumni with prior Ivy League education so it's not a completely impractical consideration personally.

#### dstefan

##### Baruch MFE Director
Advait - first of all, you show propensity in not believing what you are told and coming up with explanations as to why your suppositions are correct; for example:
I'm sorry! Are you on the Baruch MFE faculty or Admissions Committee or Faculty Recruitment Committee? I do not see your profile on the website. How did you happen to speak with him while he was interviewing for a position on the Baruch MFE faculty ?
The candidates for the full-time position in our department also met with current MFE graduate students as part of their on-site visit, and this is how our student spoke to him.

Our admission process is exactly as we describe it: we do not have a set number of seats, and we interview everyone whose application warrants that.

We invest a remarkable amount of faculty time in two rounds of technical interviews before extending an admission offer, for a very thorough admission process. How many candidates are interviewed for admission is not relevant, since the admission decision does not depend on that number, only on the performance on interview and the rest of the application. (The numbers listed above grossly underestimate how many people we already interviewed this year.)

We also invest a lot of time in making sure the process is fair, and taking into account the fact that people can share questions they are asked.

We answer inquiries regarding the admission decision beginning May 1st. We suggest everyone interested to email us on that date.

I checked the notes on your interview and reviewed the reasons for the decision to not extend an invitation for a second round interview. Feel free to inquire about this on May 1st or shortly thereafter.

#### Advait

Advait - first of all, you show propensity in not believing what you are told and coming up with explanations as to why your suppositions are correct; for example:

With due respect, this quote is completely irrelevant to this thread.

Our admission process is exactly as we describe it: we do not have a set number of seats, and we interview everyone whose application warrants that. We invest a remarkable amount of faculty time in two rounds of technical interviews before extending an admission offer, for a very thorough admission process. How many candidates are interviewed for admission is not relevant, since the admission decision does not depend on that number, only on the performance on interview and the rest of the application. (The numbers listed above grossly underestimate how many people we already interviewed this year.)

Firstly (and again with due respect), I would personally like to politely disagree. Based on my conversations with one of the members on the Admission's Committee that you happen to also be a part of, this is false. If the average reader would like to naively believe you, that's his/her choice!

Secondly, the ballpark numbers given to me were again by one of your colleagues from the Admissions Committee. If you have any reason to doubt the legitimacy of this claim, I have a recorded version of the phone conversation where he explicitly states so. I happened to call him from my office phone and all our conversations are recorded and are available. I'm not sure how I can make this available to you remotely.

I checked the notes on your interview and reviewed the reasons for the decision to not extend an invitation for a second round interview. Feel free to inquire about this on May 1st or shortly thereafter.

I'll definitely send you an email around May 1. In the interests of transparency, I allow (in fact I urge) you to share the reasons of why my application was denied on this thread directly.

We also invest a lot of time in making sure the process is fair, and taking into account the fact that people can share questions they are asked.

I guess then the amount time you invest is virtually insignificant! Because, from what I've read on those forums, you and your colleagues have been essentially re-hasing at least 80% of the questions over the last couple of years and there are numerous posts with the same questions and perfect answers with text references and everything else that would typically impress you during an interview.

#### dstefan

##### Baruch MFE Director
Firstly (and again with due respect), I would personally like to politely disagree. Based on my conversations with one of the members on the Admission's Committee that you happen to also be a part of, this is false. If the average reader would like to naively believe you, that's his/her choice!

Advait - saying with all due respect, and then proceeding to say what you said above is insulting. As such, further replies to your posts are not warranted.

Our admission policy is exactly as stated in my previous post, and depends only on the strength of the candidate.

As per our policy, we will respond to an inquiry made on or shortly after May 1st regarding your application.

#### Advait

Advait - saying with all due respect, and then proceeding to say what you said above is insulting.

Can you please logically explain how is this "insulting" ? I'm sorry, I honestly do not quite follow. I'm merely pointing out a contradiction or a lack of agreement! If somebody chooses to not agree with you, do you interpret that as he is insulting you ?!!

#### darth

Advait Since you are a probable MFE candidate>>Let me ask you a probability question : A school has following admission policy" We do not have fixed number of seats and admit as many we found suitable to our program". What is the probability that every year in past so many years will they admit approximately the same no. of students?

All characters appearing in this question are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons or organisations, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

#### Advait

What is the probability that every year in past so many years will they admit approximately the same no. of students?

Personally, given the fact the program is pimping itself really hard and is going overboard in exclaiming about it's positives on online forums such as this and is reporting consistent improvement in their internship and employment statistics over the years, I think this probability would be really really low!

#### Jose T

##### Rutgers MSMF
Jose Thomas: "There are many posts on this websites and others like wilmott and nuclearphyance on the dangers on getting a MFE and the relative value of brand name."

Could you please add some direct links to these discussions (on this and other forums if possible) for more information. I am not asking in relevance to this thread, just for my personal benefit to decide on which program to go to from my current admits and I think it will be informative and useful to read and be aware. I bear no bias for or against any program. Just for getting a better picture for me personally that's all.

Note: The below has nothing to do with Baruch; I'm just responding to the above person's general question.

Hi - I don't have much time to do so myself, but if you search the forums (this one, wilmott, np), you will find lots of comments about utility or lack thereof of a MFE.

Generally, a MFE provides very specific and often what is perceived as niche training. It is not considered transferable to industries other than Finance as a Masters in an academic subject (Mathematics, Statistics, OR, EE, Computer Science or, ironically, Finance) might be. Furthermore the specific training of the MFE is mainly in an area (derivatives pricing) that has been undergoing contraction for years and has an excessive amount of well-qualified applicants. You will learn things like Economics, Corporate Finance, Statistics, Numerical Analysis and Coding as part of an MFE but it does function as well as a credential for these things because the MFE is not so focused.

MFE graduates, retrospectively, may do fine in general but that does not mean that prospectively it is optimal for you if you have other options (which you almost certainly do). There is also the half-life of the average career in Finance to consider.

#### Jayanthan

Advait, Let's say Baruch is 100% wrong, so what? "living well is the best revenge", who doesn't make mistake?

#### Advait

Advait, Let's say Baruch is 100% wrong, so what? "living well is the best revenge", who doesn't make mistake?

So, I'd like to ensure that the prospective applicants of the Baruch MFE program in the future are aware of these issues before they apply. If you've got 135 USD to waste on a poorly run application review process, please be my guest! I'd imagine most of the others (including me) can do a lot with 135 USD in their lives.

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