Kenapa saya begitu beria-iya untuk menyambung Masters, sehinggakan saya sanggup untuk tidak naik M48 seketika sekiranya itulah bayaran untuk saya menyambung Masters di luar negara? What so great about my planning to masters overseas? And why US and UK, not Australia or local? And why Finance or Financial Engineering, not Economics, MBA or others?
Kalau ada rezeki dan diizinkan Tuhan, saya berharap saya akan dapat peluang untuk ke Haas Business School, University of California, Berkeley di US dalam Masters in Financial Engineering. After 4 years in Econ Division, and with encouragements from my mentor like Dr. Sundaran, Dr. Siva and others, I must say that I prefer finance than other subject matter even economics. Of course, both subjects are closely related, which financial sector is part of components in macroeconomy and study of economics from perspective of finance can be called as Financial Economics. While Economics concern with breadth area of finance, but Finance or FInancial Engineering covers in-depth understanding of finance, applied with mathematical theories and quantitative analysis and forecasting.
The area in finance is very wide. You can choose either you want to be specialist in investment, corporate finance, derivatives, banking sector or treasury operations or specialist in some niche area like Islamic Finance (another area which I recently fall in love to, and the reason I choose CIFP).
But why Financial Engineering? First, I missed it lot (during my undergrad), and now I realize that I love the subject more than I know but i put a very less effort to pursue a knowledge and maybe career related to this. Now, me must understand that, the finance is more complicated than those days. Starting in 90s, the financial sector has developed very fast, accordance with rapid economic growth in most countries especially new comers (now is not really new) like China, India and even GCC Countries and some Eastern Europe. Along the way we have developed wide area of financial products, including hybrid-type and complicated ones like Asset back securities.
Even, the issues of financial sector is more complicated that what has been experienced before. With sub-prime issues in US, moderation of global economy, one of it due to market failure in financial sector, hike in commodity prices, particularly oil, rapid development in physical infrastructure due to economic growth that need proper invesment analyis and environment issues like carbon trading, the need of skill that can quantify and measures all benefits, risks and complicated financial model is more demanding than what we perceived.
OK, why Haas? Why UC Berkeley? According to my personal research, UC Berkeley is one of the top Business School in US and MFE in Berkeley is highly demanded by top recruiters. Apart of that, there is Internship programme for 3-months which I think I can benefit by getting exposure working with established financial companies and learning their working and thinking style which will benefit my job in Govt upon completion of the course (or widen my opportunity of working abroad later...:) ).
Second, my choice is LBS or London Business School. As one of the top business school in the world and the best in London, doing Masters in Finance there is one of the opportunity that I shouldn't miss.
Cost of living, considered high, but tip from my friend who is doing PHD in London and Leeds (Ainurul and Man), is not really a big problem if you know how to manage your life well.
Ok, cukupla hu-ha-hu-ha. What I need now? Kena score GMAT, tu paling penting. Cakap banyak2 GMAT (exam requirement untuk masuk business school) tak score pun tak guna. UC Berkeley (Haas), at least 703, LBS, at least 690. Looooong way to go, man. Thats why I dont sleep right now, need to brush up my GMAT.
Then, working for my scholar. This Tuesday (8 July), my JPA scholar interview. Harap2 aku berjaya lepas la.