Why do potential employers value the Master’s Program in Finance?
In planning this degree program, The Robert Day School of Economics and Finance interviewed leaders of financial institutions, consulting and accounting firms, as well as government agencies. Employers consistently expressed their need for well-rounded, independent thinking young people with the education, skills and competencies to make meaningful contributions to their organizations. Therefore, from student selection through the academic curriculum and co-curricular programs, this degree program was constructed with employer expectations in mind.
Additionally, employers value this Program because of its focus on real-world application of advanced finance theories and tools. The curriculum draws upon advanced knowledge of finance to teach improved decision making, through, for example, scientific approaches to evaluating and analyzing data. Furthermore, the Program’s co-curricular activities allow graduate students to master other essential workplace skills, such as the clear communication of quantitative data.
What career placement support can I expect?
Whether you are interested in a career in the financial services industry, or a more niche position that combines your specific interests with finance, the External Relations team will assist with the following:
- Career Exploration - Due to their specialized training in finance and exceptional leadership skills, graduate students have promising career paths in the financial services industry, although they are qualified to work in nearly every field. The RDS External Relations team assists graduate students in exploring all available career paths through individual counseling sessions and informational interviews with alumni. Furthermore, graduate students have access to a full array of career resources available through the College’s Career Services Center, including a variety of assessment tools, which identify strengths that should be leveraged, as well as areas in need of skill development.
- Individualized Career and Outreach Plans - The External Relations team begins their work with graduate students the moment they are admitted to the Master’s Program in Finance. The placement team and students work together to establish immediate and long-term goals, along with a detailed map of tasks created to meet those goals. Additionally, the placement professionals and the graduate students develop a detailed outreach plan aimed at allowing graduate students to begin to build and extend their own network of professional contacts.
- Employment Searches - The External Relations team assists graduate students in targeting specific organizations, industries, and geographic areas for job placement. Due to the intimacy of the program, the placement professionals are able to reach out to specific organizations on behalf of individual graduate students and facilitates introductions to ensure a meaningful connection is made between the organization and the student. Additionally, graduate students have access to many employment search tools, such as a web-based job posting database, interview system and alumni database, and a full service Career Services Center, equipped with a variety of web-based resources, library, private interview rooms, video conferencing and faxing capabilities.
- Specialized Program Advising - Whether graduate students are interested in pursuing the Fulbright Scholar Program or the Presidential Management Fellows Program, the External Relations team is there to assist graduate students with the application process, interview preparation and letters of recommendation.
- Internships - From the moment you are admitted to the Master’s Program in Finance, the Employer Relations team will work with you to secure a summer internship. The process begins with a career goal intake session, to ensure the clear communication of the graduate student’s long term career goals. After the intake, the External Relations team will begin to reach out to specific employers to assist in securing a great internship that furthers the graduate student’s overall career plans.
- Industry Panels and Presentations - The External Relations team and the Claremont McKenna College Career Services Center provide graduate students with opportunities to learn about numerous companies through on campus, industry specific panels and presentations. Through these events, prominent business leaders and academic figures (many of whom are Claremont McKenna alumni) describe their firms, discuss career paths and answer student questions. Graduate students also have an opportunity to attend special events, such as Speaker Series programs, where past presenters have included public figures such as Bill Clinton and Bono, top educators such as Richard Thaler (University of Chicago) and Josh Lerner (Harvard) and business leaders, such as Henry Kravis (Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.). In addition to learning from these distinguished leaders, graduate students are given an opportunity to network with the Speaker Series presenters through exclusive receptions.
- Alumni Access - Claremont McKenna College alumni are very involved in mentoring and networking with graduate students and provide a very active role in supporting graduate placement. In addition to the numerous events which allow graduate students to interact with alumni, graduate students are able to search the College’s extensive alumni database and utilize the External Relations team to make appropriate introductions.
- Workshops - Graduate students participate in a variety of career oriented, industry specific workshops from the inception of the Program. These workshops cover topics such as networking strategies, business etiquette, resume drafting, cover letter drafting, interviewing and communication skills. The workshops are designed exclusively for graduate students in the Program and present advanced, sophisticated career tools and advice.
- Networking Trips - The Robert Day School currently sponsors various networking trips, at no cost to the student, to places such as Boston, Chicago, Hong Kong, New York, San Francisco, and Singapore. Additionally, The Robert Day School hosts networking receptions throughout the country and often invites graduate students to attend as event speakers. Furthermore, graduate students have the opportunity to join student organization and alumni events in various cities throughout the world.
- Resume and Cover Letter Assistance - During the summer before the Master’s Program in Finance begins, the External Relations team is hard at work assisting graduate students in compiling, editing and updating resumes and cover letters. The resume and cover letter assistance is tailored to the specific interests of each graduate student and utilizes industry professionals to ensure that feedback is relevant and significant. Additionally, all graduate students participate in a career management workshop the first week of the Program.
- Interview Preparation - During the summer before the Master’s Program in Finance begins, graduate students are asked to complete online, recorded mock interviews and are provided with timely feedback. Once classes begin, graduate students are also asked to complete a recorded, in-person mock interview with the External Relations team and other industry and career service professionals at the College’s Career Services Center, which is equipped with private interview rooms and video recording capabilities. Through this mock interview experience, graduate students are able to practice a broad range of interview styles, from behavioral to technical, and receive feedback regarding their performance.
- On Campus Application Submission and Interviews - Graduate students are able to submit applications to employers representing a broad range of industries through the Claremont McKenna College Career Services Center. Additionally, graduate students are encouraged to participate in the on campus interview process, which allows graduate students the convenience to interview with a variety of employers on campus.
- Employment Offer and Salary Negotiations - Our graduate students often have many choices during the recruiting season. The External Relations team works alongside graduate students to ensure that they have the necessary time and information to make a thoughtful decision about an offer of employment. Additionally, the placement team will assist students in evaluating the terms of a job offer, by offering salary statistics and contacts familiar with the relevant organization.
Additionally, the College’s nationally recognized Career Center has an excellent reputation for placing students in major organizations within the financial industry, along with a variety of other arenas.
What types of career paths does this Master’s Program in Finance prepare graduate students for?
Graduates of this Program are well qualified for any position that requires advanced analytical skills, thoughtful decision-making and effective communication. We anticipate that many of our graduate students will pursue careers in various sectors of the financial services industry, corporate finance and consulting. In particular, graduates of this Program are well prepared to excel in:
- Asset Management
- Capital Markets
- Commercial Banking
- Corporate Banking
- Financial Planning
- Fund Management
- Investment Banking
- Mergers and Acquisitions
- Private Banking
- Private Equity
- Private Wealth Management
- Real Estate
- Risk Management
- Sales and Trading
- Venture Capital
What is the placement record of the Master’s Program in Finance?
Through the first three years of the program, 97% of all students were placed within 90 days of graduation.
Which employers recruit from the Robert Day School?
A variety of prestigious employers from the financial, consultancy and accounting industries regularly hire from Claremont McKenna College. Additionally, through both the Claremont McKenna Career Center and the RDS External Relations team, graduate students have access to a range of employers from other industries.
Will the External Relations team assist me in exploring international opportunities for employment?
The Robert Day School recognizes that finance is an international field. For this reason, RDS actively builds relationships with employers around the globe, such as Hong Kong, London, Santiago, and Singapore, just to name a few. Therefore, whether a student is interested in working in Asia, Europe or the Middle East, the External Relations team will work individually with each graduate student to reach out to employers, alumni, and faculty connections throughout the world.
What types of career activities can I expect during the Program?
As a graduate student, career activities will begin before your courses even start, with networking events and career-focused workshops (resume writing, networking and interviewing) during an intensive seminar in August. Throughout the year, students are invited to attend a wide selection of industry panel discussions, recruitment fairs and on campus interviews hosted by both the College and the Robert Day School. Additionally, students have an opportunity to network with prominent leaders in business, finance and government through the RDS Speaker Series, which brings speakers to the College to share their perspectives and knowledge. Furthermore, the Robert Day School currently sponsors a variety of domestic and international networking trips.
Will I have access to alumni?
Claremont McKenna alumni bring a strong tradition of entrepreneurial success to their very active role in supporting graduate placement. Graduate students are able to search the College’s extensive alumni database and utilize the Director of External Relations to make appropriate introductions. Students also receive support from the RDS Board of Advisors.