SERVING THE QUANTITATIVE FINANCE COMMUNITY

hatchet
Topic Author
Posts: 9
Joined: January 6th, 2009, 4:34 am

If you could do it all over again, would you still work in finance?What if you could choose a dental career?I ask because I am at a crossroads in my career. I have been working for a year in the medical diagnostics industry as a software developer after graduating with an MS in CompE and a bachelors in BiomedE. I find engineering boring and underpaid, and want out. Working in finance seems natural since it would not require more schooling unless I wanted an MBA down the line.However, the more I think about finance, and about working in an environment where outcomes can be quantified but not controlled, the more wary I become. Plus with the hours and living in high COL area, it does not seem like such a good deal. I have friends from undergrad who had analyst pedigrees and have already been ejected from the industry because of the recession, and are pretty dazed and confused now. Needless to say, the sheen of say 2005-2006 has worn off.I am also considering going to dental school. This would be four more years and about $100,000 debt minimum, but I would enter an industry with a non-pyramidal employment scheme, six-figure salary, 40-hour work weeks if I choose, live anywhere I want, practice into my 70s, and I would work with regular people.Obviously you can tell which way I am leaning.Is the money in finance worth it, to offset all the QOL advantages of dentistry? Anthis Posts: 4313 Joined: October 22nd, 2001, 10:06 am ### Finance vs. dentistry 40 hours per week staring at "regular people's" teeth untill your 70s must be priceless!!! hatchet Topic Author Posts: 9 Joined: January 6th, 2009, 4:34 am ### Finance vs. dentistry Some people prefer a simple life.Okay then, let me rephrase:Is the prestige of finance/NYC/London worth the price? PaperCut Posts: 1616 Joined: May 14th, 2004, 6:45 pm ### Finance vs. dentistry I've said similar things to similar questions in the past, so here goes the summary:If I were passionate about dentistry, no one would be able to talk me out of it. You couldn't hold me back, I would read about it every day, and I would achieve no matter what the setbacks. As it turns out, this is how I feel about finance. Do you want to enter this field, feeling half hearted, not knowing where it will lead, when you will be competing against me? AbhiJ Posts: 748 Joined: August 5th, 2008, 11:29 am ### Finance vs. dentistry QuoteOriginally posted by: PaperCutI've said similar things to similar questions in the past, so here goes the summary:If I were passionate about dentistry, no one would be able to talk me out of it. You couldn't hold me back, I would read about it every day, and I would achieve no matter what the setbacks. As it turns out, this is how I feel about finance. Do you want to enter this field, feeling half hearted, not knowing where it will lead, when you will be competing against me?Have you ever thought why are you so passionate about finance ? Suppose you are being paid quarter of what you are being paid now for example 20k would you still be in finance. We all want success and comfort, by popular view money provides this,finance being a gateway. Work is interesting but it only comes after the money filter. albertmills Posts: 380 Joined: March 13th, 2007, 1:09 pm ### Finance vs. dentistry What do you do in finance that your passion has been sustained?Lots of people have a passion for studying some subject, be it physics or finance, but when it comes to doing it in a professional setting, and you find you have to work long, regular hours like a machine, with people you don't like, and get paid less than people you don't respect that passion fades, and it becomes a regular job. So how do you avoid this? deepvalue Posts: 918 Joined: April 25th, 2007, 6:08 am ### Finance vs. dentistry QuoteOriginally posted by: hatchetI am also considering going to dental school. This would be four more years and about$100,000 debt minimum, but I would enter an industry with a non-pyramidal employment scheme, six-figure salary, 40-hour work weeks if I choose, live anywhere I want, practice into my 70s, and I would work with regular people. dude, you better go double-check your dental stats. the last time i checked, dental school grads are 70% unemployed and those who have jobs get 5-figure salaries. you won't get six-figures unless you are in the lucky 10% who actually manage to succeed. And your jobs is basically brushing little kids and old people's teeth all day long while soaking in a good dose of foul breath.
Last edited by deepvalue on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

AbhiJ
Posts: 748
Joined: August 5th, 2008, 11:29 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

QuoteOriginally posted by: hatchetSome people prefer a simple life.Okay then, let me rephrase:Is the prestige of finance/NYC/London worth the price?If you want live an old fashioned simple life with simple pleasures, finance is not the place for you. Finance is adrenalin driven, fast paced , emotionally exhausting field.Don't believe me, just try to read all the bloomberg articles for a day or two.The act itself will tire you out.You may say that being in back office your life is simple.But IMO its better to be an independent dentist then a back office bank geek.If somebody is going to be mediocre than better it be where you have better hours, better people and more social life.
Last edited by AbhiJ on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

deepvalue
Posts: 918
Joined: April 25th, 2007, 6:08 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

QuoteOriginally posted by: albertmillsLots of people have a passion for studying some subject, be it physics or finance, but when it comes to doing it in a professional setting, and you find you have to work long, regular hours like a machine, did it occur to you that anything can become interesting if you work at it long and hard enough? heck, if tiger woods can find swinging a golf club sooo fun and interesting, i'm sure you can make engineering or selling things or running a donut shop equally fun and interesting. You just need to invest a lot of your time to become knowledgeable in the activity to appreciate all the finer nuances.
Last edited by deepvalue on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

AbhiJ
Posts: 748
Joined: August 5th, 2008, 11:29 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

QuoteOriginally posted by: deepvalueQuoteOriginally posted by: albertmillsLots of people have a passion for studying some subject, be it physics or finance, but when it comes to doing it in a professional setting, and you find you have to work long, regular hours like a machine, did it occur to you that anything can become interesting if you work at it long and hard enough? heck, if tiger woods can find swinging a golf club sooo fun and interesting, i'm sure you can make engineering or selling things or running a donut shop equally fun and interesting. You just need to invest a lot of your time to become knowledgeable in the activity to appreciate all the finer nuances.I agree to an extent.#Like suppose somebody hates coding, then somebody works coding long enough to undertand the finer nuances, then he begins to enjoy coding.Does this happen.# But again somebody finds Electrical Engineering/Programming cool the first time itself and then goes deeply inside it.Two different things.
Last edited by AbhiJ on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

hatchet
Topic Author
Posts: 9
Joined: January 6th, 2009, 4:34 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

Quotedental school grads are 70% unemployedWhere did you get this stat? I am curious.

koffieboer
Posts: 10
Joined: May 20th, 2007, 11:44 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

> engineering boring and underpaiddentist it is....One more advantage: most of the time you can deal with people who know less than you

AbhiJ
Posts: 748
Joined: August 5th, 2008, 11:29 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

QuoteOriginally posted by: koffieboer> engineering boring and underpaiddentist it is....One more advantage: most of the time you can deal with people who know less than youEngineer will find detentist job boring and vice versa. You can make more money cutting grass and mowing lawns than either being an engineer or a dentist.
Last edited by AbhiJ on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Cuchulainn
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Joined: July 16th, 2004, 7:38 am
Location: Amsterdam
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### Finance vs. dentistry

QuoteEngineer will find detentist job boring and vice versa. I agree. Dentist's job is mostly boring with sometimes a bit of plastering. Mostly maintenance work, like large class hierarchies.
Last edited by Cuchulainn on June 27th, 2009, 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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kennethlou
Posts: 31
Joined: January 8th, 2008, 9:59 am

### Finance vs. dentistry

Lucky enough I bumped into a guy during a dinner two months ago and he worked as a dentist. He changed his career doing an MPhil in some sort of art subject in his early 40s. A lot of people will do loads of planning and keep on saying that "Yeah I will work 9-6 for 5 days a week making 5/6 figures of salary till I am 70s" but the fact is that they change their career directions after 15-20 years being in the industry. Obviously you need to love the subject and passionate about it. Can you keep on reading the market and doing research without getting paid for 5 years? Do you see financial modelling as your hobby? Without really enjoying it you will quit the field in 3 years time.Btw, a lot of dentists told me their job is just boring and simple routine by pulling out brown-yellowish teeth with loads of germs from those smelly mouths