Villanova University MSF Student Review #8

I recently received a recent student review of the Villanova University MSF program. This is the eighth review and counting! It is always great to hear from graduates and I think these reviews, along with the placement information, are probably the most sought after content on the site. Thank you so much to the reviewer for taking time to comment on their experience during the program. It is a huge help to many.

1) Why did you choose the Villanova MSF?

  • I wanted to pursue an accelerated finance degree that would give me both a strong academic foundation and practical skills to transition to the professional world. Villanova has a great reputation as an academic institution and for having direct relationships to assist graduates in pursuing high level careers.
  • I studied international affairs and economics at George Washington University. In order to gain an academic foundation in finance, the 1-year Villanova MSF program was perfect for me.

2) Pros/Cons

  • Pros: In addition to a stimulating curriculum, we had access to professional development resources that made landing the right job post-graduation a clear priority. The school connected me with my mentor (a Villanova alumna) who to this day has been a major difference maker in my personal and professional development. I also made so many friends from the program who are some of the most amazing individuals I’ve had the pleasure to know. Villanova also has one of the strongest alumni networks in the sense that alumni are usually very open to connecting with current and former students. You really feel a sense of belonging to a community, and to this day if someone reaches out to me from Villanova I’ll always respond. The Villanova MSF program also organizes extra curricular meetups and events such as the annual golf outing.
  • The major con for my cohort is specific to the pandemic, in the sense that our experience was predominantly remote without access to on campus resources. I definitely believe this hindered our experience, however, most of us were extremely motivated individuals who made the most of the circumstances. To be completely honest, I think the quality of some of the courses could’ve been better, and given the MSF program allows you to pick classes twice per semester, I sometimes struggled to find courses that resonated with my interests. Overall, I had wished the course load would’ve been more technical, which pushed me to take quantitative finance in my last semester even though I had no goals of pursuing that field.

3) Who would you recommend the program to?

  • I would recommend the program to someone graduating undergrad who either didn’t study finance or a business discipline as his/her/their major, or an individual who realized later in their college career they’d like to break into investment banking and wants an additional year to learn and have access to street opportunities.
  • I think a master’s degree is becoming more and more attractive as certain finance and business fields move away from requiring MBAs. For me, while I don’t rule out getting an MBA at some time in my career, I feel confident that I don’t need to pursue one if I choose not to because I already have a master’s degree.

4) Anything else you want to talk about?

  • Overall, I am so grateful for my experience and time at Villanova and I’ll always do anything I can to help the program or students.
  • In my experience, the most challenging aspect of the MSF program is employers not understanding what the degree is. Oftentimes employers can very easily evaluate expectant college (undergrad) graduates or MBA graduates. When it comes to an MSF, my cohort and I found that it was sometimes difficult to translate to employers. Given I graduated back in 2021, this certainly could’ve changed.
  • Some of the best professors I ever learned from were my professors at Villanova. Bob West in the accounting department, Jerome Heppelmann for Portfolio theory, and Paul Hanouna for Fixed Income come to mind as standouts.

Stay tuned for more. I am trying to get some additional student reviews and obviously I will keep everyone updated on this MSF and many others.


Here is a link to the Villanova University MSF Program


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