Quick tips for choosing a Master of Finance

  • Check how much experience you need
  • Choose your location and on-campus or remote learning
  • Research school stats and rankings
  • Join info sessions and contact faculty and students
  • Investigate your future networks
  • Learn about common (and uncommon) career paths
  • Check your education is cutting-edge
  • Discover features that work best for you

1. Find a finance school that will accept you with no experience

If you’ve got a background in finance, you can go ahead and skip to the next point. Nothing to see here.

However, if you’re moving into the world of finance without a few years of experience – like Ruben – you’ll first have to look at which business schools will accept you. There are plenty out there, including the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management. The majority will include a crash course so everybody is up to speed.

Ruben’s lack of experience didn’t hinder him. When we spoke to him, he was at a turning point in his studies. He told us, “We just finished going through all the…core courses to get everyone to the same level, and now we’re going into our specializations.” (08:46)

2. Want to be on campus? Be sure about the location!

The location of your school can make your decision-making much easier. Perhaps there’s a city you’ve always wanted to visit, or maybe you’d prefer not to leave home. 

Ruben’s decision to study in Frankfurt was somewhat more in-depth. As he was choosing a Master of Finance, he wanted to be close to the action. Regarding his decision, Ruben said, “If you want to be somewhere in continental Europe, you either want to be in Frankfurt or Paris.” (04:03)

Every subject has its own geographical hotspots, and each one provides opportunities. Think international relations in Geneva or sports management in Barcelona. By being in these stand-out cities, you can attend events, grow networks, and take on internships that will all help your future career.

Of course, there is always the option of remote work. A lot of master’s students choose a flexible, remote study schedule that fits around their career, such as an evening course. 

3. Take a deep dive into each school’s stats

It’s easy to find statistics. They’re usually clearly displayed on a school’s website. Common numbers that let you do a head-to-head comparison include:

  • Rankings
  • Percentage of students who complete their degree
  • Percentage of graduates in work
  • Average graduate salaries

These are all great for a surface-level understanding of schools, but Ruben advised prospective students to dig deeper. “I would do stuff like attend info sessions or talk to students, reach out to students on LinkedIn, talk to the study advisors,” he explains. (02:21)

4. Think about your future network

It’s not just the location that helps you make key connections. In just an hour or so, you can get a good impression of what your future network will look like by browsing the following resources:

  • Faculty job history
  • Alumni network
  • Student clubs
  • Guest speakers
  • Recurring events

Connecting with people is among the top skills for any degree, and Ruben is a good example of why. Speaking about his current job, he told MASTERGRADSCHOOLS, “Right now, I am working for a small French asset management boutique and I actually got this job through a referral from my department head at FS Invest (the student-run investment club at Frankfurt School of Finance & Management).” (06:16)

5. Consider your post-graduation job prospects

If you’re choosing a Master of Finance, one of your biggest motivators is likely to be a good job upon graduation. 

A fantastic resource to see what kind of roles are out there is the alumni network. Universities aren’t shy about showing off their success stories – past students who have blazed a trail that you can follow. You can see what industries they’ve applied their finance skills to, and even discover possibilities you weren’t aware of. 

Knowing that previous students have earned exciting positions after graduating means there’s something in the water. Whether it’s the school’s reputation, well-connected professors, or a tireless career services department, successful alumni are a serious green flag.

At Frankfurt School, Ruben points out, “We have an internal job-seeking site, a job portal which has pretty much five or six jobs going up every single day from any finance company you can think of and even non-finance companies as well.” (05:49)

6. Research predictions for the future of finance and see if the school accommodates them

There are a lot of industries that are on their way out. Finance certainly isn’t one of them. 

Before choosing a Master of Finance, take a look at the curriculum to see how well it will prepare you for the upcoming trends such as big data, cryptocurrency, and fintech. Fast-moving business schools will already have their finger on the pulse, whereas traditional universities are often slower to update their syllabuses.

Ruben was very happy with the Frankfurt School of Finance and Management’s foresight. He says, “At Frankfurt School, there was a lot of focus on programming…along with digital currencies and crypto.” (03:27)

Finance is a fast-paced world, and without a forward-looking education, you’re likely to be thrown in at the deep end when you graduate. 

7. Find a school with an edge

Last on our list is to find a school with that X-factor. 

In the process of choosing your Master of Finance, you’ve probably narrowed your choices down to just a few schools. They tick all your boxes: great location, ambitious job prospects, and a network to be proud of. Now it’s time to pick your top destination.

The “edge” could be literally anything that would make your experience unique. In Ruben’s case, it was a smart balance between work and studying. He says, “Frankfurt has this three-day model. So, we are able to study for three days a week and then the remaining three days we can work as working students.” (04:36)

It was exactly this point that led Ruben to choose Frankfurt School over other similar options. 

Good luck with choosing a Master of Finance!

Finance degrees vary massively between schools, but Ruben’s pathway shows that with the right level of effort and detective work, you can find the right one for you.

Remember that with MASTERGRADSCHOOLS, you can contact our student ambassadors and get tips on their experience of studying finance.