Are Msc.Finance/Investment courses aimed mostly at younger graduates?


Akshat86
Hi Everyone,

I am an Infrastructure Advisory professional with 9 years of experience. I am 32 Years old. I am interested in studying a Postgraduate course aimed at Finance & Investments specialisation, as that is the career I want to exist in the future. However most average class age for such courses are: 24-25 Years. I have gotten admit in the following courses:
1. Msc Finance & Management, Cranfield School of Management
2. Msc. Investment & Finance, Strathclyde Business School

I really like the Cranfield Univ course as most modules being taught are the ones I am interested in studying, however, I do not want to be in a class full of young graduates. Most people around me are suggesting me to apply in MBA courses but I want to study a specialised course that is focused solely on Finance.

I need some advise.
Hi Everyone,

I am an Infrastructure Advisory professional with 9 years of experience. I am 32 Years old. I am interested in studying a Postgraduate course aimed at Finance & Investments specialisation, as that is the career I want to exist in the future. However most average class age for such courses are: 24-25 Years. I have gotten admit in the following courses:
1. Msc Finance & Management, Cranfield School of Management
2. Msc. Investment & Finance, Strathclyde Business School

I really like the Cranfield Univ course as most modules being taught are the ones I am interested in studying, however, I do not want to be in a class full of young graduates. Most people around me are suggesting me to apply in MBA courses but I want to study a specialised course that is focused solely on Finance.

I need some advise.
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Duncan
Look at the FT ranking for post experience masters in finance.
Look at the FT ranking for post experience masters in finance.
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Akshat86
Hi Duncan,

I am not worried about rankings or not having chosen the right Masters. They are both good Univs. My concern is more regarding class average age. I am 30+ and most students I fear will be 22-25. Are there Masters Students my age?
Hi Duncan,

I am not worried about rankings or not having chosen the right Masters. They are both good Univs. My concern is more regarding class average age. I am 30+ and most students I fear will be 22-25. Are there Masters Students my age?
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Duncan
No, the programmes you have chosen are pre-experience masters in finance degrees, aimed at people coming directly from undergraduate degrees. There are other programmes which are aimed at people with prior work experience: those are listed on the post-experience master in finance ranking instead. That is why I suggest you apply instead to the courses ion that list: http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/masters-in-finance-post-experience-2017

There are also intermediate options, like this one at Lancaster, which is aimed at people with the CFA Level 1 qualification: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lums/our-departments/accounting-and-finance/masters/msc-advanced-financial-analysis/ However, even those students will be mostly recent graduates. ESCP also has an advanced masters in finance aimed at people with a MiF or at least three years of relevant experience: http://www.escpeurope.eu/escp-europe-programmes/masters-full-time/finance-audit-control-and-law-full-time-specialized-masters-postgraduate-degrees-escp-europe-business-school/welcome-to-the-advanced-master-in-finance-escp-europe/admissions/admission-requirements-advanced-master-in-finance-postgraduate-programmes-business-school-escp-europe/ It is taught in London and Paris.

If you must take a pre-experience MSc because of limited funds, then aim for the ones with the highest salary like the top French schools, Oxford, Warwick or Imperial. http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/masters-in-finance-pre-experience-2017

[Edited by Duncan on Mar 12, 2018]

No, the programmes you have chosen are pre-experience masters in finance degrees, aimed at people coming directly from undergraduate degrees. There are other programmes which are aimed at people with prior work experience: those are listed on the post-experience master in finance ranking instead. That is why I suggest you apply instead to the courses ion that list: http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/masters-in-finance-post-experience-2017

There are also intermediate options, like this one at Lancaster, which is aimed at people with the CFA Level 1 qualification: http://www.lancaster.ac.uk/lums/our-departments/accounting-and-finance/masters/msc-advanced-financial-analysis/ However, even those students will be mostly recent graduates. ESCP also has an advanced masters in finance aimed at people with a MiF or at least three years of relevant experience: http://www.escpeurope.eu/escp-europe-programmes/masters-full-time/finance-audit-control-and-law-full-time-specialized-masters-postgraduate-degrees-escp-europe-business-school/welcome-to-the-advanced-master-in-finance-escp-europe/admissions/admission-requirements-advanced-master-in-finance-postgraduate-programmes-business-school-escp-europe/ It is taught in London and Paris.

If you must take a pre-experience MSc because of limited funds, then aim for the ones with the highest salary like the top French schools, Oxford, Warwick or Imperial. http://rankings.ft.com/businessschoolrankings/masters-in-finance-pre-experience-2017
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Akshat86
Well the FT list for Post-Exeprience only lists about 6 schools, which is not exactly comprehensive, but thanks for the suggestions, I am not a CFA Level 1 or a Finance Grad by education though, but I will look into them.

I have applied in Msc.Finance in Warwick and I am waiting to hear from them, but in case I decide to go with Cranfield, is it worth it? i.e. with respect to - Investment, University Reputation, Course Recognition in the UK.

Also, I did ask in both my interviews that are their students of my age group, to which both had similar replies that there are students with 7-8 years of experience, however class average age has gone down
Well the FT list for Post-Exeprience only lists about 6 schools, which is not exactly comprehensive, but thanks for the suggestions, I am not a CFA Level 1 or a Finance Grad by education though, but I will look into them.

I have applied in Msc.Finance in Warwick and I am waiting to hear from them, but in case I decide to go with Cranfield, is it worth it? i.e. with respect to - Investment, University Reputation, Course Recognition in the UK.

Also, I did ask in both my interviews that are their students of my age group, to which both had similar replies that there are students with 7-8 years of experience, however class average age has gone down
quote
Duncan
Oh, I assure you: that is comprehensive. Those are the only full-time MiF degrees at strong schools that require notable, relevant, work experience. There are simply not so many of them.

The pre-experience ranking shows you that Warwick MiF alumni earning more than Cranfield alumni. However, Cranfield students are earning more on the way in, so perhaps they are more experienced? If you are earning less than the Cranfield alumni, or you are not in the function you want to work in, then Cranfield will be strong. The good thing about Cranfield is that, as a more studious campus (graduate only, more remote, less of a party scene) the other students there may be a bit more mature.

Personally, I do see what is attractive about Cranfield: it's almost twice as many courses, four terms rather two semesters, a much smaller cohort... it all feels like a better setting for learning. But Warwick's outcomes are impressive.

[Edited by Duncan on Mar 12, 2018]

Oh, I assure you: that is comprehensive. Those are the only full-time MiF degrees at strong schools that require notable, relevant, work experience. There are simply not so many of them.

The pre-experience ranking shows you that Warwick MiF alumni earning more than Cranfield alumni. However, Cranfield students are earning more on the way in, so perhaps they are more experienced? If you are earning less than the Cranfield alumni, or you are not in the function you want to work in, then Cranfield will be strong. The good thing about Cranfield is that, as a more studious campus (graduate only, more remote, less of a party scene) the other students there may be a bit more mature.

Personally, I do see what is attractive about Cranfield: it's almost twice as many courses, four terms rather two semesters, a much smaller cohort... it all feels like a better setting for learning. But Warwick's outcomes are impressive.
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Akshat86
Thanks a lot Duncan.

I am really leaning towards Cranfield. My Msc Finance application results for Warwick and Imperial are still awaited. But like you rightly pointed out, Modules wise Cranfield makes a lot of difference.

Lets hope I get to somewhere:)
Thanks a lot Duncan.

I am really leaning towards Cranfield. My Msc Finance application results for Warwick and Imperial are still awaited. But like you rightly pointed out, Modules wise Cranfield makes a lot of difference.

Lets hope I get to somewhere:)
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donho199
Finance is not easy and at your age if you want to look to do something else it is a bit late.

When I boast about my Master in Banking and Finance, a few CFO astounded and affronted me saying that proper finance can only be done by people with accounting background. Banking of course is a different beast altogether.

If I were you I would not go for a full-time Master spending your time with 22 year old which will waste your time, money and most importantly career progress. I would sign up for CFA or ACCA or CPA and see if you can handle it. There are tons of good courses such as the Master in Accounting from Illinois one of the most renown accounting departments world-wide. There is also an accounting course by Brian Bushee at Wharton. It is a 12 week comprehensive introductory course.

If you could handle these courses then you have the knack for it. Otherwise stick to what you do and learn finance as a hobby. Career is for money, hobby is for fun. Make sure you do not mix up. It is like girl-friend and wife, mix-up and you will be dead.
Finance is not easy and at your age if you want to look to do something else it is a bit late.

When I boast about my Master in Banking and Finance, a few CFO astounded and affronted me saying that proper finance can only be done by people with accounting background. Banking of course is a different beast altogether.

If I were you I would not go for a full-time Master spending your time with 22 year old which will waste your time, money and most importantly career progress. I would sign up for CFA or ACCA or CPA and see if you can handle it. There are tons of good courses such as the Master in Accounting from Illinois one of the most renown accounting departments world-wide. There is also an accounting course by Brian Bushee at Wharton. It is a 12 week comprehensive introductory course.

If you could handle these courses then you have the knack for it. Otherwise stick to what you do and learn finance as a hobby. Career is for money, hobby is for fun. Make sure you do not mix up. It is like girl-friend and wife, mix-up and you will be dead.
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Akshat86
Well, honestly I don’t believe that education (Any form) is too late to study irrespective of its form (Masters or Undergrad). I am an Engineer and I have learnt Financial Appraisal and Equity Evaluation skills through the course of my work. It has never hindered my growth in the organisation as long as I continue to work hard and deliver, however the next 5 years or the next 10 years have to be secured.

I appreciate the suggestions about CFA and CPA courses, but to be very honest - I am not cut out for self-learning and reading oriented type of teaching methodology. I need a proper college education and since I have never studied any module of finance whether its accounting or financial modelling during my educational years (Science Student+Engineer) I really want to learn Finance basics through a proper course structure.

As far as certification courses go, there are several such options for e.g. Project Financing Specialisation from London Business School. But most of these options work for slightly older individuals with MBA or Masters in the bag. They will always remain open as options in later stages of the Career.

[Edited by Akshat86 on Mar 13, 2018]

Well, honestly I don’t believe that education (Any form) is too late to study irrespective of its form (Masters or Undergrad). I am an Engineer and I have learnt Financial Appraisal and Equity Evaluation skills through the course of my work. It has never hindered my growth in the organisation as long as I continue to work hard and deliver, however the next 5 years or the next 10 years have to be secured.

I appreciate the suggestions about CFA and CPA courses, but to be very honest - I am not cut out for self-learning and reading oriented type of teaching methodology. I need a proper college education and since I have never studied any module of finance whether its accounting or financial modelling during my educational years (Science Student+Engineer) I really want to learn Finance basics through a proper course structure.

As far as certification courses go, there are several such options for e.g. Project Financing Specialisation from London Business School. But most of these options work for slightly older individuals with MBA or Masters in the bag. They will always remain open as options in later stages of the Career.
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Duncan
In that respect, many of the top MiF degrees are designed in partnership with the CFA or accounting bodies and will either partly qualify you with them or prepare you excellently for their exams.
In that respect, many of the top MiF degrees are designed in partnership with the CFA or accounting bodies and will either partly qualify you with them or prepare you excellently for their exams.
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Akshat86
Yes. Absolutely. Most of the courses I am applying in are CFA certified programs that do prepare me for taking it as an option.

My only concern is class cohort and composition is an essential part of college education, and whether it will be a worthwhile investment to take a break from my Career.

[Edited by Akshat86 on Mar 13, 2018]

Yes. Absolutely. Most of the courses I am applying in are CFA certified programs that do prepare me for taking it as an option.

My only concern is class cohort and composition is an essential part of college education, and whether it will be a worthwhile investment to take a break from my Career.
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Duncan
If you are earning more in your current role than these alumni and want to stay in your current role then it would make not sense, but that is not your goal -- or is it?

Given the choice between a course that will help you meet your goal well or easily, with a younger cohort, and a course that will do that much less well, but with a comfortable cohort, wouldn't it be odd to choose comfort? Personally, I am a 49-year-old PhD student in a cohort half my age. They are way smarter than me, better students in every way, because I am at an excellent business school. Don't think that, for example, the 26-year-old Warwick/ESCP/Oxford MiF alumni who is earning $100,000 a year would have had nothing to you teach you when they were 23. These are the people who will have been interning with Goldman Sachs when they were 20....
If you are earning more in your current role than these alumni and want to stay in your current role then it would make not sense, but that is not your goal -- or is it?

Given the choice between a course that will help you meet your goal well or easily, with a younger cohort, and a course that will do that much less well, but with a comfortable cohort, wouldn't it be odd to choose comfort? Personally, I am a 49-year-old PhD student in a cohort half my age. They are way smarter than me, better students in every way, because I am at an excellent business school. Don't think that, for example, the 26-year-old Warwick/ESCP/Oxford MiF alumni who is earning $100,000 a year would have had nothing to you teach you when they were 23. These are the people who will have been interning with Goldman Sachs when they were 20....
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Akshat86
That makes sense.

My criteria for choosing a course was: School Reputation/Ranking/Accreditation>Course Modules>Employability and Recognition. From those points, Cranfield makes perfect sense. I get your point, even if the average class age is 24-25 they will be learning newer things along with me as its unknown territory for all, so yeah I get your point.
That makes sense.

My criteria for choosing a course was: School Reputation/Ranking/Accreditation>Course Modules>Employability and Recognition. From those points, Cranfield makes perfect sense. I get your point, even if the average class age is 24-25 they will be learning newer things along with me as its unknown territory for all, so yeah I get your point.
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Thapa22
Hello Akshat

I have also applied for MSc Finance and management and in a bit of confusion considering I have worked over 10 years largely in accounting and operation risk. My objective is to move to credit or market risk or something similar kind of role. I am not sure if this ll help me with the objective at all. However I am still awaiting my results from interview and hopefully have a clearer mind by end of it.
Hello Akshat

I have also applied for MSc Finance and management and in a bit of confusion considering I have worked over 10 years largely in accounting and operation risk. My objective is to move to credit or market risk or something similar kind of role. I am not sure if this ll help me with the objective at all. However I am still awaiting my results from interview and hopefully have a clearer mind by end of it.


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Akshat86
Hey Thapa,

Yes, my confusion still persists. I have postponed my offer with Cranfield for the time being, I am also considering looking at MBA options with finance as specialisation. Lets see where I get to, Cranfield no doubt is a good place to study and the course has its advantages so you should definitely give it a good thought.
Hey Thapa,

Yes, my confusion still persists. I have postponed my offer with Cranfield for the time being, I am also considering looking at MBA options with finance as specialisation. Lets see where I get to, Cranfield no doubt is a good place to study and the course has its advantages so you should definitely give it a good thought.
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Thapa22
I am still awaiting results so if I get through I ll take it. The course falls in line with my career plans. I don’t want to pursue MBA coz I don’t see value in terms of return on investment. MBA does give an edge in management roles but that is not my objective. I think for candidates like us it is very difficult decision due to the fact that we have to quit a job. Let’s see how things goes. Good luck to you as well with decisions.
I am still awaiting results so if I get through I ll take it. The course falls in line with my career plans. I don’t want to pursue MBA coz I don’t see value in terms of return on investment. MBA does give an edge in management roles but that is not my objective. I think for candidates like us it is very difficult decision due to the fact that we have to quit a job. Let’s see how things goes. Good luck to you as well with decisions.
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