Request for advice on preparing for MFE education and jobs (for the next ~12 months)

Thanks for taking the time to read. I have received admits from a few MFE programs but given the COVID situation, I shall probably be deferring them to the next fall. So I now have 12 months to prepare adequately for my MFE education as well as the jobs that come after it. Could you please provide any advice on how I should be going about my preparation? Anything from courses to books to particular people to-be-connected-to would be great! I will be working at an IT firm as a tech developer but I'm assuming I'll have enough time to prepare for the MFE career. Thank you in advance.
 

Michsund

Well-Known Member
C++ Student
So over the past year at CMU I have realized I have made tons of mistakes. First thing i would work on is using python, specifically pandas and numpy. I would also make sure my c++ coding is decent, this is really important for interviews in my opinion. This will help you in your class work as well as interview. Next I would do a lot of linear algebra especially if your looking to focus on machine learning. Next I would review basic stats and probability theory and make sure your comfortable understanding it at an intermediate level. I would also say to skim options, futures, and derivatives by Hull. Skimming over it will help you when learning the finance. Other then that once you start the program make sure you do your hw early. This is a mistake I make very mini and it has caught up to me. I would also suggest your weekends wisely as I feel it is what separates mediocre and advanced students apart. Hopefully this can be helpful to you as a current mscf student who wants to learn over his breaks over the summer.
 
So over the past year at CMU I have realized I have made tons of mistakes. First thing i would work on is using python, specifically pandas and numpy. I would also make sure my c++ coding is decent, this is really important for interviews in my opinion. This will help you in your class work as well as interview. Next I would do a lot of linear algebra especially if your looking to focus on machine learning. Next I would review basic stats and probability theory and make sure your comfortable understanding it at an intermediate level. I would also say to skim options, futures, and derivatives by Hull. Skimming over it will help you when learning the finance. Other then that once you start the program make sure you do your hw early. This is a mistake I make very mini and it has caught up to me. I would also suggest your weekends wisely as I feel it is what separates mediocre and advanced students apart. Hopefully this can be helpful to you as a current mscf student who wants to learn over his breaks over the summer.
Thanks for such a comprehensive and honest reply. Could you also describe some important steps in internship/job hunting that I should focus on?
 

Michsund

Well-Known Member
C++ Student
Thanks for such a comprehensive and honest reply. Could you also describe some important steps in internship/job hunting that I should focus on?
Sure. For us at cmu we started with the summer "boot-camp/pre-mfe" courses which are there to help prep us for the upcoming year. We focused on probability, math, and markets. I would say I would start doing interview prep one month before school starts as it will be difficult after. In terms of when to start really depends on where your trying to go. Some firms only recruit during later in the year while all the banks will be wanting to get all their hires in by November/December. I got my internship this March, so I cut it real close to possibly not getting one. I would say it is important to practice hanker ranks, as I didn't and saw the consequences. Coding test are crucial to many, but not all recruiting processes. I would recommend starting your recruiting around October so that if you wanna go for other jobs on the buy side which open up late you won't have to say no to other offers you may have received, if you get one at all. I hope that answers your question.
 
Sure. For us at cmu we started with the summer "boot-camp/pre-mfe" courses which are there to help prep us for the upcoming year. We focused on probability, math, and markets. I would say I would start doing interview prep one month before school starts as it will be difficult after. In terms of when to start really depends on where your trying to go. Some firms only recruit during later in the year while all the banks will be wanting to get all their hires in by November/December. I got my internship this March, so I cut it real close to possibly not getting one. I would say it is important to practice hanker ranks, as I didn't and saw the consequences. Coding test are crucial to many, but not all recruiting processes. I would recommend starting your recruiting around October so that if you wanna go for other jobs on the buy side which open up late you won't have to say no to other offers you may have received, if you get one at all. I hope that answers your question.
besides the specific c++ questions, like inheritance and pointers, for coding test, can you code in python? I understand c++ gives you the underlying mechanics of python, but I've heard python is much more convenient in interviews.
 

Michsund

Well-Known Member
C++ Student
besides the specific c++ questions, like inheritance and pointers, for coding test, can you code in python? I understand c++ gives you the underlying mechanics of python, but I've heard python is much more convenient in interviews.
Umm yeah most of the coding test are in python, but I’ve been asked on an on campus interview to write a c++ code that could price bonds on the spot. So it’s still important and helps you write better code in python as well. I’m not a good coder btw but this is what I have seen.
 
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