The Masters Experience for a BComm Background

By Jamie

One of my main questions for admissions when I was considering Simon, was if the school would build on my finance knowledge, or simply review the material I had already previously covered. In June 2010 I graduated from Carleton University in Canada with 4 full years of finance education, and somewhat complacently I entered Simon’s summer quarter in July. I learned new material in the first week.

Simon has quickly honed my theoretical understanding of financial concepts into industry ready tools. I have been continuously impressed with how well the professors embrace technology in the material, and their consistent use of industry terminology when discussing concepts.

One class in particular that has been entirely new material is Institutional Finance taught by Dr. Diana Knyazeva. Through this class I have learned: four Value at Risk techniques used in the middle office of trading floors, exactly how to price collateralized debt obligations, and how to financially engineer any pay off profile I desire with derivative products.

Learning the terminology, concepts, and inner workings of capital and corporate finance at Simon, has been crucial in achieving my career goals. I relied heavily on material covered in class, and provided by the Simon Career Center, to compete for positions through investment banking’s grueling four round interview format. With Simon’s preparation I was able to successfully capture an Analyst position in a bulge bracket investment bank; a goal mirrored by many prospective finance candidates I’m sure.

I am currently learning in Financial Statement Analysis, Mergers & Acquisitions Strategy, Investment Management, and Corporate Strategy this quarter. Now that Simon has helped me land a full time job, hopefully it will also aid me in passing the CFA level II exam!

If you have questions about Simon, please contact me at james.heard@simon.rochester.edu

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