Sunday, March 18, 2007

And now...?

I have been chewing on what to do about this online diary - a medium which let me jot down some memories from this rollercoaster of an year!! Finally, it dawned on me - I need to continue this journey (as someone at the graduation said, this one year showed us in great detail about how little we know..). I need to keep on learning about topics in quantitative finance - and subsequently maintain this journal - maybe not with the weekly updates - but surely with 1/10th the gusto I did earlier (famous last words).

Another things I wanted to mention. A lot happened in this year - I made a transition from engg. consulting to capital markets; I made some amazing friends in my classmates; I learnt some cool stuff from some amazing professors; and most importantly - I finally learnt what makes Berkeley special.

It's the Cal attitude, Yo!!

I mean, everyone I know at Berkeley - are seriously exceptional people - smart and driven. But even then, there are no airs about anyone of them. I think the Cal attitude defines this - be smart, but be humble as well. After all, this place has some seriously gifted people - at Haas, ..and at other departments (some top ranked departments in sciences and engineering). Yet, something about the University makes the people realize - that they need not take themselves so seriously, that they cause alienation with folks who work with them. This is a small something for me to hold on to.. alongwith the MFE degree that I picked along the way!



Blogger John said...

hello and congrats for the graduation,

I was admitted to UC berkeley's MFE for the spring 2008, and I'm very excited about it. However, I have some questions about it and I'd really like to get some help. Your blog is very interesting and I was able to get a feel of the day to day demands of the program.

I was asked to take the math foundation course as a condition to get in.
I would like to know a bit about the level of difficulty of the program and the course.

I got my math/econ undergrad with honors from ucla and i work in fixed income. Seeing the profile of PhDs and other highly qualified individuals, one cannot be completely free of worries when tackling such a program.

I would like to know how difficult and demanding is the program. Are some students disadvantaged compared to PhDs? Or is the program tailored as such to provide equal necessary knowledge to everyone? I am willing to put all my efforts in it but I would like the opinion of someone who lived the experience.

How relaxed are the professors and the program in general? I know it's not a walk in the park but for someone who's relatively a fresh undergrad and with 2 years of work experience, how will i be competing compared to PhDs and MBAs.

Also, I would like to know if it is easy to find jobs on wall street. I know the employment report is encouraging but it doesn't show details about which firms recruit who and in what positions.
I'd really like to be in a big bank working in fixed income trading or research but I'm wondering how many such positions are available for the 60 students enrolled.

You help will be GREATLY appreciated. I really need advice from an insider.


jean (my email is

4:45 PM, March 19, 2007  
Blogger Quantjock said...

Hi John,
you will be surprised, but some of the best students in my class were ones straight out of undergrad.. so dont worry on that are not disadvantaged at all.

Fixed income trading and research roles are what most MFEs get - so again dont worry about that..

7:11 PM, March 20, 2007  
Blogger beeell said...

Congrats on the graduation and new career!

Interesting you mention that most MFE's get spots in FI trading/research. How about structuring? Credit, equity derivatives, ABS (your new area right?), etc. Did your classmates find opportunities in these areas as well? I ask as I'm wondering if MFE is the best point of entry.


4:15 AM, March 24, 2007  

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