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MBA vs MS Finance

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Intern
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Joined: 07 Nov 2016
Posts: 5
Location: India
MBA vs MS Finance  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Nov 2016, 05:06
Hey guys,

This topic title is fairly common and there are many interesting viewpoints to this dilemma many people face.
A little bit of a background on what I am.

Final year undergraduate in Biomedical Engineering from a reputed University in India, but a non-target university to most programs abroad.
8.6/10 cumulative grade point.
Tonnes of leadership experience right from high school (Student Council Leader thrice, club/chapter president, sports team captain)
Extracurriculars, mostly in music, debate, theatre and sports.
A little bit of community service.
Internships in the undergraduate field of study as well as one at an investment firm.

I will also be doing another internship in a few months. I have the option of doing another finance internship in the industry, but I would prefer an academic internship as I feel it provides more depth to my profile and more credibility to whatever knowledge I will claim to possess.

I aspire to be an investment manager.
I will be giving the Level 1 CFA exam next June, immediately after I graduate.

The questions I have are -

1) Considering the fact that my engineering stream (and my university) makes it very hard for me to land a decent job in an investment/finance capacity, would it make sense to try and pursue an MS in Finance.
The reasons I have for this decision are -

a)Branding, from a good university so that I can achieve an MBA from one the top B-Schools in the US (This branding I lack at the moment, as unfortunately, like millions of other Indians, I am not from the prestigious brand of an Indian Institute of Technology)

b) Inability to land a job given my biomedical background. It is hard to land a core job due to the biomedical field being new. And to be honest, the prospect of having to do a few more years of biomedical really displeases me.

c) The MS Finance seems to be a good finance degree to have due to the options it provides, that the CFA does not. (I may be wrong about this). I also know that an MBA after Mfin might be redundant curriculum-wise.

2) Should I try to land a mediocre job which may or may not align with my interests, pursue my CFA on the side, and try to glean as much experience as a good B-School might require and directly apply for an MBA?

My reservations with this approach stem from the belief that, 'the better the last thing on your resume, the higher your chances of landing something like an HBS'
Once again, I do not know how true this is, but I wouldn't be entirely wrong in believing that the more reputed my employer, the better my chances.
And given the difficulty landing a job immediately after my engineering, I am not entirely sure this approach is worth it.

Sorry for being really wordy. It sounds more like a rant at points, I know.
I would really appreciate some help.
Thank you :-)
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Joined: 16 Nov 2015
Posts: 32
Re: MBA vs MS Finance  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Dec 2016, 05:35
So:

Final year of undergrad in India majoring in Biomed engineering from a non-target school with interest in becoming an investment manager (and a milestone of attending a prestigious US MBA program). No interest in biomed.

What is your other internship opportunity like? What are you thinking about location wise (I'll be out of my depth re: sponsorship issues)? What is a mediocre job? What MS finance programs are you interested in?

I like the CFA and what it preaches (ethics, pursuit of further education, connecting with other finance professionals around the world) but it's ability to initiate careers vs. grad school isn't that great.

FYI, a fair amount of people most likely enter MBA programs and view the curriculum as somewhat repetitive vs. undergrad but find other rationalizations for an MBA.

Generally speaking MS finance programs tend to have a large % of internationals who, similarly, applied to such programs with a similar mindset to your own.
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New post 19 Apr 2018, 23:28
These are two different degree programs that are aimed at helping alumni along different career paths. First, in terms of admissions an MBA is typically for prospective students who are more experienced (average 4-5 years) than those applying to MiF (average 1-3 years). Second, an MBA is a generalist program – you’ll get a lot of breath at the expense of depth. MiF is much more focused on topics related to finance – you’ll get more depth at the expense of breath.

If you are looking to transition to a new industry, aspire to climb the hierarchical ladder in the managerial position, or switch career paths (say from being an engineer to becoming a manager) then MBA is probably the right program for you. If you want to deepen your knowledge in finance or lack the necessary quantitative skills in your current job, then MiF is more appropriate. The best thing is to talk directly to the alumni of both programs and the career office and discuss your professional project with them.
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Re: MBA vs MS Finance &nbs [#permalink] 19 Apr 2018, 23:28
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