Quant Guide 2020: Baruch College, City University of New York

New York City, US

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Baruch College ranks third in this year’s list of quantitative finance master’s degrees, down one place from last year’s ranking. The college’s Master of Science in Financial Engineering programme runs for three semesters over a period of 16 months.

Students who successfully complete the degree can expect to join an asset manager or new-wave financial technology company just as much as a traditional investment bank. Programme director Dan Stefanica says he has observed changes in the career paths taken by recent graduates; a “majority” now take on positions in buy-side firms, and “15–20%” are snapped up by fintechs.

Baruch emphasises its focus on student choice: compulsory courses form the core one-third of the programme – 12 credits – and the remaining two-thirds are dedicated to elective modules chosen by students.

Elective classes are split across the mathematics department and Baruch’s Zicklin School of Business, and include classical disciplines such as market and credit risk management, statistics for finance and commodities and futures trading as well as voguish topics like big data technologies, blockchain and machine learning-aided prediction.

Baruch’s offering also includes online courses, though additional fees are required to take part. Two web-based C++ certificate programmes are also available. Besides these, students can take online certificates in Visual Basic, Python and SQL. The latter package is provided by e-learning company ScriptUni, also New York-based.

Changes made to the Baruch master’s programme in the past year include the addition of new modules, says Stefanica. Students can now sign up to courses on natural language processing and blockchain technology in finance. Industry instructors are tasked with helping to keep the programme up to date.

Practitioner staff include Yury Blyakhman, a managing director at JP Morgan; Mark Higgins, co-founder and chief operating officer at Beacon Platform; Dmitry Rakhlin, a managing director at Goldman Sachs; and Gordon Ritter, founder of investment adviser Ritter Alpha, and a previous winner of Risk.net’s buy-side quant of the year award.

View this institution’s entry in the 2019 guide

View other universities and a guide to the metrics tables

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