If you are interested in being a “quant jock” and have an affinity for mathematics and
programming, then an MFE may be the degree for you. Also known as a master’s in
computational mathematics or financial mathematics, this degree can open many doors for an
aspiring finance professional. Also, for those new graduates with an interest in finance, MFE
programs welcome candidates with limited job experience. Heading into the workforce armed
with an advanced degree from the likes of Columbia, MIT, University of Southern California,
and NYU can make you increasingly competitive for those coveted quant jobs.
Financial engineers are specialists making use of mathematical formulas, programming and
engineering methods in financial theories, and analyses market trends to build data-backed
financial models. These professional offer deep mathematical and modeling skills to employers
and are increasingly in demand in industries as diverse as the government, Google, Facebook,
Apple and particularly wall street firms. Wherever there is a need for deep data analytics, a
quantitative engineer is likely part of the team.
The primary responsibility of a financial engineer is to have thorough knowledge of financial
markets, its volatility and knowledge of financial theories. This knowledge is used by engineers
to develop simulations and predict market behavior. Of course, the predictions aren't always
accurate, any unexpected issue may happen in the financial market, but the risk potential
reduces. Since a financial engineer knows about market trends and previous market
performances, the knowledge is used to make future investment predictions.
Most financial engineers work in the field of financial risk management and analysts. With the
knowledge of computer simulations and market trends, the engineer helps to develop profitable
investment plans for companies and high net-worth individuals.
In the last decade, governments and financial institutions have started to actively hire financial
engineers for advising or consulting governments with market economies.
Not surprising, MFE programs are highly competitive and seek candidates with academic
profiles that include advanced mathematics and statistical coursework. It is important that a
candidate aligns his interest and background with the right program. Knowing a computer
language is an asset but not always a requirement. A good admission counselor will be able to
work with candidates to identify those programs that represent the best fit.