Sorry, I didn't mean to say you were whining, I meant to say that the talk with your supervisor needs to be a constructive exploration of options, not just a list of all the things you don't like.1. Why is a MA in Math Fin better than ABD in Math Fin, since after all it's a rougher selection process for the PhD.One thing you need to be prepared for is that the perception of what is "tougher" is quite subjective, and the people making decisions about you often have poor information.In any case it's not just a case of how hard it is to get in, though of course that helps. You are being selected in a PhD for other characteristics. These are not a great match for working in a bank, but often are the only data a HH or manager has. At the risk of being called elitist, I divide the world into actors and extras. Extras are sometimes smarter, but there is less "depth" to them.2. Most of the time for one's oral qualifiers, at least at the school I am at, you do have to self-study eveything anyway, I would hardly say that's spoonfed.Nor would I. Again of course at this time I don't know your school and even if I did your application for a job is dependant upon me or some other pimp or manager knowing the structure of your course. That's a big dependancy to have. If I'm wrong and underestimate you, I lose a small chance of making a little money, but you lose the chance for a good job.Your task is to make yourself look good to me.That makes me sound arrogant, and well yes I am. But even if I were ever so humble, I'd still be making about the same decisions, on the same knowledge.3. Is a PhD in Number Theory and a night reading of Hull more applicable to a non-research position at a bank/ hedge fund than an ABD in stochastics and finance?Yeah, sometimes. It varies of course. However the pure quant hirers we know will take the PhD. Is harder to sell pure maths people though, they need to be better to get the same chance.We're more flexible than most, and unless the client says "must be PhD in Physics or applied maths" will consider people with other stuff. You will come to know thart most HH's and HR departments use keyword filters, sometimes quite blindly. The last pure maths guy we saw go into a bank had got rather sad about being rejected for the "pure" bit even though he was good.4. Would switching into a top MBA make a difference?Yes, though not for us. HR departments like MBAs from top schools, we are OK about them.
Last edited by DominicConnor
on September 7th, 2005, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.