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Columbia University Financial Engineering program

Columbia MFE is a full-time program under the IEOR department

Tags:
  1. QuantNet
    Established:
    1998
    Type:
    Full-time
    Tuition:
    $56,808
    Application deadline:
    Jan 6
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Tottiforpresident and tiaoxin like this.

Recent Reviews

  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous
    4/5,
    Can you tell us a bit about your background?
    Electronics engineer from a premier institute in India. Plenty of experience as a trader in financial markets.
    Current student at Columbia MSFE program(03/13/2017)

    Did you get admitted to other programs?
    Yes. Columbia was the top on my list though. Had offers from GaTech and a few others.

    Tell us about the application process at this program
    Smooth interview process. Focuses more on the GRE Quant score compared to other programs.

    Does this program offer refresher courses for incoming students? How useful was it?
    There was a 15 day refresher course, but it was quite basic really. Not sure what would have helped though, because in my case I was coming back to academics after a large break. Professional Development course to cover basic resume writing/Linkedin profile etc. which every other program has as well.

    Tell us about the courses selection in this program. Any special courses you like?
    ML, Optimization, Stochastic Calculus, Data Analysis - standard courses. There are a few good buy side courses as well, where you get a little hands on experience with some good projects - Asset Allocation and Algo Trading.

    Tell us about the quality of teaching
    Some professors here are quite brilliant I think. Some are alright when it comes to teaching. As said before - all do good work.

    Materials used in the program
    Presentations, recorded videos, class notes, some reference books.

    Programming component of the program
    Matlab/Python/C++ - Mostly you can choose any programming language to do your assignments and projects. Programming I thought was the easiest skill to pick up here.

    Projects
    I have taken some good projects in Asset Allocation and algorithmic trading classes so far. Plan to do a few more in machine learning.

    Career service
    Got a few calls from the resume book - even without applying for the positions, but I think it depends on the past experience you have as well. There are plenty of networking events, plus you will be in New York. You will definitely get interviews from top firms if you are here, but to convert them will be up to you.

    Can you comment on the social interaction between students of different ethnics, nationalities in the program?
    I think this could be better.

    What do you like about the program?
    Standard courses which cover all the basics needed in Quantitative finance. Enough flexibility to choose from whatever add on skill you want to acquire.

    What DON’T you like about the program?
    Not enough focus on the buy side. Also, I wish I knew how important statistics were before coming here. Some earlier interviews would have gone much more smoothly.

    Suggestions for the program to make it better
    Better refresher course. Add a few really good programming courses as well.

    What are your current job status? What are you looking for?
    Will be doing my internship at a buy side firm in the summer. Looking for full time opportunities later on.
  2. Anonymous
    Anonymous
    5/5,
    Can you tell us a bit about your background?
    Finance background, no work experience before the program.

    Did you get admitted to other programs?
    Cornell MFE, Chicago MSFM.

    Why did you choose this program (over others, if applicable)?
    Not a difficult choice.

    Tell us about the application process at this program
    There was no problem, a timely process.

    Programs like Baruch MFE, UCB MFE have refresher courses for incoming students. Does this program offer such courses? How useful was it?
    They used to have pre term. But it was cancelled.

    Tell us about the courses selection in this program. Any special courses you like?
    Python/SQL. Data Analysis, Optimization for FE, Continuous-time Models, Quantitative Risk Management.

    Tell us about the quality of teaching
    The quality of teaching was very good. Teaching assistants were very responsible. They were changing to teach more practical stuff on statistics and programming rather than just pricing.

    Materials used in the program
    Primarily professor lecture notes.

    Programming component of the program
    Python, C++, R, Matlab. They were shifting to practical programming tools like Python/R, which was pretty helpful for job interview.

    Projects
    In the Fall Semester mostly individual homework. Group and individual projects on various topics are done in the Spring esp on selective courses. Those courses are not as difficult as core courses.

    Career service
    Mainly the Center for Career Education at Columbia, also MSFE Resume Book, some positions through the department.

    Can you comment on the social interaction between students of different ethnics, nationalities in the program?
    Good social interaction between different ethnical groups and nationalities. Of course, people having the same mother language would prefer communicating more in it to people from their countries rather than in English.

    What do you like about the program?
    Good brand, very good faculty, courses are practical.

    What DON’T you like about the program?
    Career service is not that strong compared to CMU/Baruch etc.

    Suggestions for the program to make it better
    Establish better relationships with the financial industry in order to improve career placement.

    What are your current job status? What are you looking for?
    Entry level at Morgan Stanley.
  3. anonymous
    anonymous
    4/5,
    Can you tell us a bit about your background?
    Mathematics and Economics background with no work experience prior to the program - only 1 internship.
    I studied full-time in the program from 7/2009-5/2010

    Did you get admitted to other programs?
    Cornell MFE, CMU MSCF, LSE Applicable Math.

    Why did you choose this program (over others, if applicable)?
    Best brand name among offers.

    Tell us about the application process at this program
    There was no problem, a timely email response.

    Programs like Baruch MFE, UCB MFE have refresher courses for incoming students. Does this program offer such courses? How useful was it?
    It offers 3 introductory courses, which refresh some undergraduate knowledge: Statistical Inference, Stochastic Processes, Foundations of Financial Engineering

    Tell us about the courses selection in this program. Any special courses you like?
    Security Pricing, Data Analysis, Continuous-time Models, Quantitative Risk Management.

    Tell us about the quality of teaching
    The quality of teaching was good, as professors have practical experience in finance. Teaching assistants are helpful for homework assignments.

    Materials used in the program
    Primarily professor lecture notes. Textbooks used mainly as reference, or recommended reading, rarely required.

    Programming component of the program
    Matlab, Excel VBA, C++, S-Plus, Java. A good amount of programming is done- about 1/2 of assigned problems.

    Projects
    In the Fall Semester only individual homeworks. Group and individual projects on various topics are done in the Spring.

    Career service
    Mainly the Center for Career Education at Columbia, also MSFE Resume Book, some positions through the department.

    Can you comment on the social interaction between students of different ethnics, nationalities in the program?
    Good social interaction between different ethnical groups and nationalities. Of course, people having the same mother language would prefer communicating more in it to people from their countries rather than in English.

    What do you like about the program?
    Prestigious academic institution, very good faculty.

    What DON’T you like about the program?
    Not stellar career service.

    Suggestions for the program to make it better
    Establish better relationships with the financial industry in order to improve career placement. Even more core courses.

    What are your current job status? What are you looking for?
    Still looking for a position in Structuring/Risk management and others.
  4. Anonymous
    Anonymous
    4/5,
    Can you tell us a bit about your background?
    Majored in Applied Math in Columbia and had two summer internships at Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs.
    I studied full-time in the program from 07/2009-05/2010

    Did you get admitted to other programs?
    Yes, NYU Math Finance and NYU-Poly MFE.

    Why did you choose this program (over others, if applicable)?
    Its reputation and my love for the Columbia community that I developed as an undergrad.
    Tell us about the application process at this program
    Very timely process

    Does this program offer refresher courses for incoming students? How useful was it?
    They had a stat course, a stochastic processes course, and an intro to financial engineering course, all of which were very useful.

    Tell us about the courses selection in this program. Any special courses you like?
    Optimization, monte carlo, data analysis, continuous time models... all very useful.

    Tell us about the quality of teaching
    Some were great and some were not so great. All were brilliant though.

    Materials used in the program
    Mainly class notes. Few textbooks were used.

    Programming component of the program
    Matlab, vba, c++, sql. There was a decent amount.

    Projects
    There weren't many projects in the courses I took. There were many hw assignments.

    Career service
    They had a resume book, and a career website. There were also many networking events. Columbia is relatively good at placing people, but does not do so well in a bad economy.

    Can you comment on the social interaction between students of different ethnics, nationalities in the program?
    There were some language barriers, but everyone seemed to get along just fine.

    What do you like about the program?
    Smart teachers who have worked in the industry.

    What DON’T you like about the program?
    Some of the teachers could be better at teaching.

    Suggestions for the program to make it better
    Perhaps have online notes for each class to allow students the opportunity to teach themselves.

    What are your current job status? What are you looking for?
    I will be working at Morgan Stanley in July 2010