We met with two academic directors from the HKUST Business School-NYU Stern Master of Science (MS) in Global Finance (MSGF) program to find out all you need to know to craft a good business school application, from writing a solid admissions essay to impressing in the interview stage.
1. Before applying to a Master in Finance, make sure the program is right for you
There’s nothing worse than getting mid-way through your business school application before realizing the program isn’t right for you. That is why it is critical to properly investigate the Master of Finance program for which you are applying and verify you meet the qualifying requirements.
The HKUST-NYU Stern MSGF is a Master of Finance program designed for high-performing finance professionals with at least five years of full-time postgraduate work experience and a bachelor’s degree.
“The program is aimed at those who are mid-level financial executives or higher but feel that they need to refresh their knowledge and be up-to-date, and those with finance functions in non-financial firms who wish to expand their knowledge of finance,” says Menachem Brenner from NYU Stern and academic director of the MS in Global Finance.
You must also guarantee that you love the mixture of theory and practice, as well as mastering a variety of qualitative and quantitative methods.
During the Integrative Project Presentation, professionals can put their finance abilities to the test in a practical context, working in teams to address a real-life finance issue linked to corporate finance, financial markets, or even significant finance trends such as fintech.
The MSGF costs $83,000, which covers tuition, course materials, and accommodation during some trips to Hong Kong.
2. Reach out to faculty and alums from the Master in Finance
If, after researching the program, you’re still unsure whether a Global Master in Finance is a good fit for your career goals, reach out to faculty, alums, or current students.
“A sincere applicant will reach out to some of our alumni, more than one, to get a better perspective if the program is suitable for them and receive advice about the interview,” says Jialin Yu from HKUST and academic director of the MS in Global Finance.
This can provide you with a more comprehensive perspective of the program than the website or brochure. You might even get insider information from alums or students about what made them successful in the application process.
3. Create a tailored business school CV
The MSGF application evaluation process is comprehensive.
If you’re serious about getting into a top Master in Finance program, you’ll need to personalize every aspect of your application, including your CV or resume, to the program you’re going for.
Developing a customised CV entails using your study and program expertise to inform the structure and material provided in your CV.
If you have five or more years of work experience, make sure to highlight major accomplishments within these jobs and use analytics to demonstrate how you’ve added value to your team or the firm as a whole.
Also, ensure that the resume you submit is completely up to date, as this is a requirement for the MSGF program.
4. Write a strong admissions essay
The admissions essay is your opportunity to shine and demonstrate to recruitment teams how your experience and skills are applicable to the program. It’s also an opportunity to clarify your specific job ambitions and what you hope to gain from the master’s degree in finance.
Applicants for the Masters in Global Finance must submit three essays.
Because the MSGF is an executive program, you may want to include some information on why you’ve decided to pursue a master’s degree in finance in the middle of your career, as well as what themes and abilities you want to utilize in your career once you’ve completed the program.
“Any applicant with the right background in the business world should state why they wish to join the program and define their expectations,” says Menachem Brenner from NYU Stern.
5. Dazzle in the interview stage for the Master in Finance
It’s hardly unexpected that the interview component of a Master in Finance application can feel the most daunting. If you’re prepared, however, this should feel like a doable component of the journey.
If your online application for the Master of Global Finance at HKUST-NYU Stern is accepted, you will be invited to a selection interview. This may take place in-person or online.
Jialin Yu from HKUST says, “during the interview, state clearly why you want to join the program, how you expect that it’ll help you advance in your career path, and how you can contribute to the program and your peers.”
Try to stay calm and composed, as the interview for your Master of Finance isn’t meant to catch you off guard—rather, it’s an opportunity for the recruitment team to get to know you beyond the online application.
If a candidate is successful at this stage, the results are usually released four weeks after the interview.
You will have the highest chance of success in the application process if you include your study on the Master in Finance program into your application and show why the program is suited for you at this moment in your career.