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Will having an MS in finance hurt me (specifically) for MBA?

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Will having an MS in finance hurt me (specifically) for MBA? [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2007, 13:01
I live in Colorado right now and am an active duty Air Force officer. I have at least 3 more years in the USAF and they will pay for graduate degree for free. I started an MS in finance program at the University of Colorado bc A. it was free and B. after receiving it I had planned on taking the CFA level 1 after preparation (I majored in econ in undergrad, but dont know hardcore financial analysis well enough to take the CFA).

I can easily answer the why the MBA and why here question by stating that I hadn't majored in finance in undergrad and wanted to prep to take the CFA, while keeping my career focus in tune with regard to the financial sector. Additionally I will have some hard skill through financial analysis classes but not the soft skills that MBA school espouses to teach, along with the teamwork and case methodology that most schools use today. My "skills" probably won't be anywhere close to any BB analyst out there today. I realize though, that it is taken for granted that "leadership and teamwork" are assumed in the military. This is all in addition to the fact that going to MBA school is a common reason for military transition to corporate sector and I could additionally argue that University of Colorado was not going to be able to grant me access to the NYC market.

I sense from some outside input that perhaps I should stop the MS in finance bc then I will have a more compelling reason to be admitted to one of the top MBA schools...

Quick background, double major in Econ/Supply Chain Info Systems from decent Big Ten school, ROTC, 3.7ish GPA, screwed up my GMAT the first time I took it, high 600s but will retake and hopefully get the 720ish.

MBA schools I'm looking at most: Harvard, Wharton, Columbia, Chicago, Stanford, Dartmouth, Cornell, NYU, UVa.

Thanks.
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 [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2007, 08:51
Can anybody comment?

Thanks...
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 [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2007, 13:11
Well I'll comment, but then take everything i say with a grain of salt. Because this is the internet, and I could really just be a 10 year old trying to show off ;)

An MS in Finance is completely different from an MBA. So will it hurt you? The answer is definitly NO. The only thing it can do is actually help you, there are tons of people with great backgrounds applying to those top schools for MBA programs, an MS in Finance will put you in front of the herd.
Also if you are just doing an MS in Finance to take your CFA level I, that might be a little too much. You can study on your own for the CFA, use the Schwesser books they are really good. But if you have your CFA + an MS in Finance you shouldn't have any problems finding a top Finance job. You might actually find it pretty unecessary to take an MBA to advance in your career. The MBA can come later on in your life after 2 to 3 years in Finance.

Any other specific questions I haven't answered let me know, and I'll give it my best shot.
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Good insight, but... [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2007, 13:12
I appreciate the "being able to land a top finance job" with the MS in Finance + CFA level 1, but don't you think having it from a non target school far away from financial centers, even with military experience, is going to be an uphill battle for bulge brackets?

I'm not getting my MS solely for the CFA. I'm getting it because I didn't take it in undergrad and I want a leg up on the competition, and the Air Force also helps me by paying for some of it. If I decide to stay in the Air Force a master's degree is a prerequisite for moving up the rank structure...

I do have some connections to the street, but I don't see any of them being able to get me an interview for Trading OR I-banking...
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 [#permalink] New post 15 Jun 2007, 16:07
Getting into I-banking in a bulge bracket firm is really hard to do as you mentionned. You are probably right when you say that earning your MS in Finance from a small school probably won't give you many chances of getting in Goldman or some other bulge bracket school. But I would think that with your military background you should have an edge on the competition (*think* being a keyword here).
But what would prevent you from getting into Berkely, Princeton etc... ?
The better the school the better your chances :)

Again my advise is really not that great, and I don't know much. I am doing an MSc in Finance in London at LSE this fall, and after a lot of research I found out that my chances of getting into a bulge bracket firm in London are good. But again, that is after carefully considering the school, and asking every single person I know about it.

To your original question: a master in Finance won't hurt you for an MBA; whether it gets you into a bulge bracket firm, that I don't really know.

Good luck to you, you should check out this forum if you have more questions about it: ibtalk.com . It's mainly for Brits, but they have a lot of good advices on it. You should look at what programs you are considering and ask them a question there.
The MS Finance section of the gmatclub is almost dead apart from one or two post every months. I got most of my info from other forums regarding my MS in Finance.
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 [#permalink] New post 17 Jun 2007, 09:52
Disjoint wrote:
Getting into I-banking in a bulge bracket firm is really hard to do as you mentionned. You are probably right when you say that earning your MS in Finance from a small school probably won't give you many chances of getting in Goldman or some other bulge bracket school. But I would think that with your military background you should have an edge on the competition (*think* being a keyword here).
But what would prevent you from getting into Berkely, Princeton etc... ?
The better the school the better your chances :)

Again my advise is really not that great, and I don't know much. I am doing an MSc in Finance in London at LSE this fall, and after a lot of research I found out that my chances of getting into a bulge bracket firm in London are good. But again, that is after carefully considering the school, and asking every single person I know about it.

To your original question: a master in Finance won't hurt you for an MBA; whether it gets you into a bulge bracket firm, that I don't really know.

Good luck to you, you should check out this forum if you have more questions about it: ibtalk.com . It's mainly for Brits, but they have a lot of good advices on it. You should look at what programs you are considering and ask them a question there.
The MS Finance section of the gmatclub is almost dead apart from one or two post every months. I got most of my info from other forums regarding my MS in Finance.


Well I appreciate the advice, even if you're not really sure. The thing keeping me from Berk or Princeton? 1. Probably lack of math aptitude. 2. Even w/ the aptitude I'm currently stationed in Colorado for the next 3 years, so I have to work with what is available.
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 [#permalink] New post 15 Aug 2007, 21:38
hey...im saurabh frm india...im doin my final yr of bachelors in commerce...i wantd 2 noe whthr an MSc in finance frm LSE or Manchestr, Lancaster or Warwick in UK wud help me get a gud job...3-4 yrs aftr which i wud lyk 2 do an MBA frm a gud bschool in US...
  [#permalink] 15 Aug 2007, 21:38
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Will having an MS in finance hurt me (specifically) for MBA?

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