by Maxim LeFleur
Central European University (CEU)’s MSc in Finance Program was presented to the students of McDaniel College Budapest, on Tuesday, February 19th. The program’s director, Associate Professor of Finance Dr. Peter Szilagyi, delivered the special lunchtime presentation. The event highlighted the range of opportunities available to potential business students at CEU.
At first, the presenter discussed exchange programs with other schools, which allow for tuition-free semesters at world-leading business universities (the costs are included in the overall CEU Program fee of 10,000 EUR per year). Dr. Szilagyi emphasized CEU’s large endowment from its founder, George Soros, which keeps fees and costs minimal compared to similar business programs.
CEU’s business programs also introduce participating students to a variety of employment, internship, and networking opportunities over the course of their duration. Dr. Szilagyi brought up a visit from Amazon Luxembourg representatives as an example of the European business connections available at CEU.
Similar executive seminars occur throughout the year, offering students the chance to meet industry leaders in person. The school’s career services office can also place students with companies as an external consultant during their tenure in the program. CEU’s business programs are structured to flexibly allow internships and employment, and the last three months of relevant programs are spent in the field.
The MSc in Finance requires no prior study in the subject matter, instead training participants from scratch in finance and accounting. Dr. Szilagyi noted that the selection of new students is heavily based upon applicant interviews. Program entry occurs twice a year, with students accepted for September and January start dates.
The finance industry is undergoing a paradigm shift towards the incorporation of information studies, and CEU’s programs are no exception. Featured there now are classes on programming in languages such as Python, as well as courses on statistical analysis software such as SPSS and R. A variety of other interdisciplinary electives are also available to business students at CEU.
Special scholarships are available annually to prospective students. Investment firms work directly with CEU to sponsor candidates that attract their interest. Selected students will have their expenses paid for, and in exchange, will develop the skills desirable to their benefactors for later employment.
In the event’s conclusion, Dr. Szilagyi reminded the audience that CEU is not a profit-based organization. Instead focused on social objectives mandated by Soros, the school especially seeks to recruit students from developing countries and emerging markets.