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program comparison: NYU Tandon MFE v.s. Columbia MAFN v.s. UCB M.Eng IEOR

I've received the admissions from NYU Tandon Financial Engineering (8k scholarship), Columbia Financial Mathematics and Berkeley IEOR. Struggled for several days and cannot decide where to go. My considerations of the pros and cons of each program are as listed.

Tandon MFE:
pros: location; duration of the program (1.5yr-2yr) which is good for job hunting; MFE is friendly to a finance major student, not so theoretical; relatively good career service (e.g. boot camp, maybe some referring chances).
cons: too many ppl (>100), which leads to fierce competition; maybe brand (no offense)

Columbia MAFN:
pros: location; Ivy; brand; higher bar for admission
cons: too theoretical; no career service at all; heavy burden on study such that I'll have no time for finding a job

UCB M.Eng IEOR:
pros: brand; attractive capstone; strong in machine learning
cons: short duration (9months); technical; not many finance-related companies in West Coast

As far as I'm concerned, I'm a finance major student, with relatively limited math and CS background. I want to find an internship or job in the US.
Hope that anyone could give any suggestions or supplement anything to the pros and cons on program comparison. Thanks a lot!
 

Michsund

Well-Known Member
C++
MAFN on the fact that the UCB program sounds like a cash cow and NYU Tandon isn’t as good as mafn in my opinion.
 

idkmyname

Active Member
UCB's program is only 9 months and it can be difficult to find a job as a fresh grad. Columbia MAFN's placement is relatively low according to QuantNet, but employment rate after three months raise significantly, and I assume that lots of international students who are unemployed at graduation go back to the homeland to find a job. NYU is well-known for finance and in this field, it's every major company's target school. Also, Columbia MAFN also has too many ppl. But as Dr. Peter Carr promised, NYU Tandon will have small class size. The placement is better than Columbia MAFN. If I were you, I will choose Tandon. Just part of my opinion, hope it helps. Good luck mate!
 
UCB's program is only 9 months and it can be difficult to find a job as a fresh grad. Columbia MAFN's placement is relatively low according to QuantNet, but employment rate after three months raise significantly, and I assume that lots of international students who are unemployed at graduation go back to the homeland to find a job. NYU is well-known for finance and in this field, it's every major company's target school. Also, Columbia MAFN also has too many ppl. But as Dr. Peter Carr promised, NYU Tandon will have small class size. The placement is better than Columbia MAFN. If I were you, I will choose Tandon. Just part of my opinion, hope it helps. Good luck mate!
Thanks a lot for your detailed analysis and sound advice! I believe I'll finally choose one that really matches me.
 

Liu Guixin

Active Member
C++
Tandon MFE:
This is a program that seems to have earned both good and bad reputation. You can find conflicting reviews/comments about this program on Quantnet. Acclaimers owe the program's success to Peter Carr's dedication to students' career prospect, and the small class size. Others criticize the program as one that does not teach necessary "hard skills" to bring students into advantage in their job-hunting stage. Nevertheless, the program seems to be constantly improving, especially when it comes to Quantnet ranking.

Columbia MAFN:
It seems definite that this program is more theoratical than Tandon MFE. Harder courses means greater challenges, but also greater chances for you to stand out in the job interview, if you were able to handle the heavy study pressure. However, the "placement rate" is perticularly low (less than 40%) according to Quantnet statistics. This might be because Columbia's career service is far from good, and there're too many students competing (MSFE, MAFN, MSOR, and even Stat, they learn more or less the same things). I assume many of Columbia MAFN students are international, and they end up leaving US to find a job in their home country.

BTW, another drawback is that the course selection is not as flexible as that of Tandon MFE.

UCB's program:
Sorry I do not know much about it. So no comments.

Suggestions (if we just compare Columbia and Tandon):
Considering your background (somewhat limited maths background) and your aspiration, Tandon MFE will give you a higher chance to secure a job (thanks to highly-customized course options, less fierce competition, and Peter Carr's help). However, if you aspire to be a TOP quant, than Columbia should be a better decision. Also, Columbia will throw you in a better situation than Tandon, if you were not able to find a job in US.
 
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Tandon MFE:
This is a program that seems to have earned both good and bad reputation. You can find conflicting reviews/comments about this program on Quantnet. Acclaimers owe the program's success to Peter Carr's dedication to students' career prospect, and the small class size. Others criticize the program as one that does not teach necessary "hard skills" to bring students into advantage in their job-hunting stage. Nevertheless, the program seems to be constantly improving, especially when it comes to Quantnet ranking.

Columbia MAFN:
It seems definite that this program is more theoratical than Tandon MFE. Harder courses means greater challenges, but also greater chances for you to stand out in the job interview, if you were able to handle the heavy study pressure. However, the "placement rate" is perticularly low (less than 40%) according to Quantnet statistics. This might be because Columbia's career service is far from good, and there're too many students competing (MSFE, MAFN, MSOR, and even Stat, they learn more or less the same things). I assume many of Columbia MAFN students are international, and they end up leaving US to find a job in their home country.

BTW, another drawback is that the course selection is not as flexible as that of Tandon MFE.

UCB's program:
Sorry I do not know much about it. So no comments.

Suggestions (if we just compare Columbia and Tandon):
Considering your background (somewhat limited maths background) and your aspiration, Tandon MFE will give you a higher chance to secure a job (thanks to highly-customized course options, less fierce competition, and Peter Carr's help). However, if you aspire to be a TOP quant, than Columbia should be a better decision. Also, Columbia will throw you in a better situation than Tandon, if you were bot able to find a job in US.
Yeah, my concerns about Tandon were whether they could provide enough hardcore skillset training. To me, I'm not kind of person who's keen about math, especially theoretical math. But I'm flexible to programming, and interested in sth. about machine learning, such kind of practical data science stuff. Quant industry nowadays is changing gradually, more demanding on ds stuff. So it'll be good if I can go somewhere I could choose some ds courses and have enough time for job hunting.
Thank you so much for your sincere suggestions! valuable to me
 
A closer look into the three programs' curriculum.
Tandon just lacked in data science training. Only two ds related courses, one is online while the other is kind of introduction.
 
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