Quant Guide 2021: New York University (Tandon School of Engineering)

New York City, US

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Once again, the MS in Financial Engineering at New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering is far and away the most popular course by number of applicants in this year’s Risk.net Quant Guide. This year, the programme reports receiving 1,980 applications for its autumn 2019 intake, and 1,886 for autumn 2020.

But, like other US-based programmes that boast a high proportion of international students, Tandon’s latest cohort has shrunk in size, thanks to the coronavirus’s impact on travel restrictions. While extremely popular among applicants, a large number of Tandon’s accepters have deferred their enrolment until 2021. When course director Peter Carr spoke to Risk.net earlier this year, he predicted that the 2020 autumn intake would be significantly smaller than previous classes as a result of such deferrals. Indian students, in particular, he said, would have an extremely tough time obtaining the necessary student visas.

So it has proved. The autumn 2020 cohort has ended up numbering 96 students, a precipitous drop from the previous year’s 157. Ultimately, 120 students have deferred their admission to autumn 2021.

“Our large deferral group of 120 students is a consequence of a fairly large deposit – $3,000 – and that several other programmes did not allow deferrals,” says Carr, adding that, on the plus side, “right now, we are forecasting that half of the 120 who deposited and deferred will enrol in autumn 2021, which is our next intake. This means that we can be much more selective than usual”.

In addition, the smaller-than-usual cohort this year means the hit to the programme’s percentage of offer holders who enrol – stats that account for 10% of a programme’s score (see the guide’s introduction for an explanation of the methodology) – is partially offset by a smaller average class size and an improved student ratio versus the programme’s 67 teaching staff, 61 of whom are industry-affiliated.

There are also several new instructors among the group, Carr adds. Faculty staff joining in the last year include: programme alumnus Serge Feldman, formerly of JP Morgan, who teaches a course on financial software engineering; Michael Lipkin, who teaches a new course in event-driven finance; Sateesh Mane, who also leads a financial software course; and Sandeep Jain, who joined the programme in spring, and teaches a class in machine learning and finance.

One other new course besides Lipkin’s has been added: a class in fixed income algorithmic trading, led by Sudeep Lahiri.

View this institution’s entry in the 2020 guide

View other universities and a guide to the metrics tables

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