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Old 02-06-2009, 06:55 AM
 
10 posts, read 25,710 times
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Ok, I'm really sorry if this sort of thing is already posted somewhere for the Charlotte area but I couldn't find anything. Right now I am an undergraduate student at UNCC majoring in mathematics for business. I'll graduate spring '10 and then I want to go to graduate school for a MS in Mathematical Finance so that hopefully I could get a good job in finance working here in Charlotte (maybe uptown?). Obviously with the economic crisis I'm a little bit worried that I'll have a hard time finding the sort of job I want in Financial Analysis or Financial Advising or something related. I'm pretty ambitious about my grades and how well I do and it's all that matters to me right now. I'm hoping prospects will look better in about 2 and a half to 3 years when I graduate with the MS. Anyone already out there in the field have any good advice for me? Any perspective would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-06-2009, 07:15 AM
 
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I went to college and ended up with 2 degrees, 1 in economics and another in statistics. I went into the banking industry and ended up working for credit unions in management. I did well, but I always felt as though I was giving away my knowledge for an awfully cheap price, compared to what I saw other people making in different industries. After 15 years, I went back to school for my MBA. Wow, what a difference in knowledge gained from the MBA experience. I learned so much more from the MBA about how the "whole" business operates. I wished that I would have done it sooner, it would have made a huge difference in my career path and choices in life. I did have an advantage when it came to the MBA though and that was life experience, so the MBA was easier for me than it was for people that went from high school to college to the MBA program. I am a huge believer in balance between life experience and education.

For you, if you can get through school without too much debt and then go right into a graduate program without accumulating more debt that might be a great way to go. You will need the additional degree if you really want to progress in your career--there is going to be a huge amount of "banking" people out there without jobs for a while. You will need every advantage that you can get. Good luck and stay away from college debt if you can!
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Old 02-07-2009, 06:40 AM
 
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thanks for the tips, luckily I haven't had to take any student loans until my 2nd Junior semester so I haven't accumulated very much debt so far (thanks to public university education rates).
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:29 AM
 
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Originally Posted by amitch64 View Post
thanks for the tips, luckily I haven't had to take any student loans until my 2nd Junior semester so I haven't accumulated very much debt so far (thanks to public university education rates).
Look at financial auditing and compliance. Compliance is already in demand and is slated to increase of the the next decade. I also agree with the previous poster, an MBA along with a solid undergrad degree positions you well. If I were you, I would get some experience under my belt before or while pursuing the MBA. Don't focus too much on the salary when you start out, the money will come after you establish a good track record.
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Old 02-07-2009, 11:32 AM
 
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Now is the time to invest in education and get a leg up. I'm at UNCC too, and the placement rate for business grads straight out with a bachelor's degree is 8%. That's worse than Yale's undergrad acceptance rate.
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Old 02-07-2009, 02:14 PM
 
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Now is the time to invest in education and get a leg up. I'm at UNCC too, and the placement rate for business grads straight out with a bachelor's degree is 8%. That's worse than Yale's undergrad acceptance rate.
8% ? wow that's pretty scary stuff. Is there some place I can look this stuff up for additional information that might be interesting? Also, does this sort of placement rate specifically describe graduates with Business Administration degrees, or anyone with any sort of degree who wants to work in the business or finance field, etc. ? The MS in Math Finance is supposedly a fairly specialized degree for quantitative analysis type of work, unless I'm mistaken. I want to feel like I'd have some sort of advantage (doesn't everyone) but I may end up struggling like everyone else.
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Old 02-07-2009, 06:40 PM
 
1,116 posts, read 2,766,258 times
Reputation: 1485
Quote:
Originally Posted by amitch64 View Post
8% ? wow that's pretty scary stuff. Is there some place I can look this stuff up for additional information that might be interesting? Also, does this sort of placement rate specifically describe graduates with Business Administration degrees, or anyone with any sort of degree who wants to work in the business or finance field, etc. ? The MS in Math Finance is supposedly a fairly specialized degree for quantitative analysis type of work, unless I'm mistaken. I want to feel like I'd have some sort of advantage (doesn't everyone) but I may end up struggling like everyone else.
It's the College of Business statistic. I'm not sure what it is specifically for math finance. But what can you do that someone with an accounting degree can't? What makes that degree marketable? (I don't really know anything about it) That specialization will probably require you to relocate. RTP used to be the place to go, but now even Cisco is "restructuring" 2000 jobs.

I suggest applying to get your MBA or other higher degree and put in applications to entry level positions at the same time. See which bites, figure out which road you want to take, and go from there. Just remember, there were 24,000 freshmen admitted to UNCC this year. That's 24,000 (give or take) other bachelors degrees to compete with in four years. A higher degree is really the only way right now to set yourself apart.

Anything in finance is going to be a struggle. But hey, at least you're not in real estate.
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Old 02-08-2009, 05:12 PM
 
10 posts, read 25,710 times
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Originally Posted by spiderbear View Post
It's the College of Business statistic. I'm not sure what it is specifically for math finance. But what can you do that someone with an accounting degree can't? What makes that degree marketable? (I don't really know anything about it) That specialization will probably require you to relocate. RTP used to be the place to go, but now even Cisco is "restructuring" 2000 jobs.

I suggest applying to get your MBA or other higher degree and put in applications to entry level positions at the same time. See which bites, figure out which road you want to take, and go from there. Just remember, there were 24,000 freshmen admitted to UNCC this year. That's 24,000 (give or take) other bachelors degrees to compete with in four years. A higher degree is really the only way right now to set yourself apart.
Well some careers that I've seen listed associated with Math finance degree (somtimes called "quantitative finance" or "financial engineering") that may set it apart from an accounting degree are Alternative investments, trading support, product development, risk control, and portfolio management. A website with a section on math finance said:

"There are many overlaps and synergies in the activities listed below; nevertheless, most quant positions have a specific focus within the firm: to make money by trading the firm’s own capital, to support the frontline traders, to create new financial products, to measure and control risk, or maintain investment portfolios that meet certain objectives."

According to most of what I've read and the UNCC website, this sort of MS degree requires extended work in math that a regular Business degree might not need such as all the calculus courses, linear algebra, etc. as people with this sort of degree use techniques in stochastic calculus in their line of work. Also according to the UNCC website people graduating from this degree program have had excellent job placement with companies in charlotte, and some students having jobs lined up before they graduate (although that was a couple of years ago and obviously the turnout wouldn't be so successful right now). But in all honesty I have not yet met with the director of the program myself and I don't have a broad understanding of what the specifics would be that would set me apart from someone like a CPA or someone with maybe a masters degree in accounting like you said. However, I would hope that I would be set apart from someone with a bachelor's degree in Business or even someone with an MBA. If they were relatively the same then I'm sure they wouldn't even offer this sort of program. The only other school I've seen that offers this sort of MS degree in specific similarity is NYU, and a couple of other universities up north where there is obviously a large financial area. I feel like I'm at least on the best path for my own self interests. By biggest hope right now is that the economy will have turned around some in two and a half to three years or so when I graduate, and maybe it won't be so difficult to find a job as it is now. My only wish right now is that I wish I had some sort of feel for how tough it is to find a job in the sort of market I'm going into, and I wish I knew specifically who I will be going up against so I could better prepare myself for difficulties.
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