As the MBA candidate pool seems to get bigger every year, many prospective business school students are asking themselves how they can distinguish themselves to employers. Top employers are always on the lookout for talented graduates, but how can you get yourself noticed by recruiters? These are some of the characteristics recruiters are always scouting for on business school campuses:
- Talent; it may seem obvious, but you have to get yourself out there to be noticed. Competing in case competitions are a great way to get attention from sponsoring companies.
- Specialization; not only are smart candidates taking MBA specializations in order to make a good impression, employers are also realizing that they tend to be the candidates with the clearest and most ambitious career paths. However, plenty of MBA candidates still prefer to take a generalized degree because they value a certain degree of flexibility.
- Soft skills; you may be a wizard when it comes to business theory, but if you don’t have top communication and people management skills, you won’t be making it to an executive position.
- Knowledge; while a specialization can be a way to better understand a certain niche, hard skills like quantitative methods and derivatives management will qualify you for finance positions that MBAs simply never will.
If you see yourself working in a finance role, a Master of Finance degree can deliver the hard skills that will qualify you for jobs in commercial banking, asset management, insurance, or as a broker. Like an MBA, you can also study part time if you start your Master of Finance in Toronto at a qualified business school. An alternate weekend program extends a one-year degree into two, but allows you to continue to work. That means you don’t have to take the risk of leaving your job to pursue your education, and you can offset the cost of tuition by continuing to work.
What are some of the things you learn while obtaining your Master of Financein comparison to an MBA? To take Wilfrid Laurier University as an example, the two-year schedule includes courses in economics and quantitative methods, professional ethics, financial analysis, financial risk and derivatives analysis, corporate finance, and CFA examination preparation.
The CFA is a prestigious designation, but not an easy one to earn. According to the CFA Institute, only 42% of people who took the Level 1 exam passed. There are three levels, with Levels 2 and 3 each hovering around a 50% pass rate every year. As one of the most difficult designations to earn in finance, it’s a sure way to stand out to employers, and Master of Financeprograms like those offered at Toronto’s top business schools are doing anexcellent job preparing their students.
Depending on the career they pursue, Master of Finance graduates can expect to make somewhere between $70,000 and $120,000, with bonds and commodities brokers near the lower end and commercial bankers earning top dollar by their mid-career. If you’re looking for a way to stand out from the crowd of business school graduates, a Master of Finance is a sure fire way to blaze your own trail.