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All About Studying Masters in Finance in USA as an International Student

Sayantani Barman Sayantani Barman
Study Abroad Expert

Masters in Finance or MS in Finance in USA is a 10-24months course program widely popular among international students. 49 universities in the USA offer a Masters in Finance. The international students prefer this course of the program to pave their paths in the finance sector. The students can choose optional courses around topics like corporate finance, financial modeling, capital markets, behavioral finance, econometrics, investment management and others in this masters in Finance course. Average tuition fees for MS in Finance in the USA vary between $60000 and $65000 per year.

Why study Masters in Finance in USA?

  • The students can opt for this 2 years master’s program immediately after completing under-graduation.
  • MBA degree program focuses on wide topics whereas the graduates in Masters in Finance focuses mostly on financial planning and risk management.
  • In 2020 the market size for the Financial Planning & Advice industry will turn into $57.8 billion.
  • In 2020, the finance sector of the USA expects to make an increase of 1.4%. The sector has grown on average 2.4% per year from 2015 to 2020.
  • As compared to the past decades, the bankers started working on dynamic elements like risk management, data management, technology infrastructure for expansion of the sector.

Top Ranking universities of USA for Masters in Finance

The USA is the land of opportunities for international students due to its innovative academic structure. The students can actually opt for different faculties in finance as per preferences. Few of the world’s renowned universities are located in the USA. The top ranking universities in USA offering Masters in Finance are given below

UniversitiesRankingTotal program fee (USD)
MIT Sloan School of Management3$118,177
UC Berkeley Haas School of Business8$80000
UCLA Anderson School of Management10$84,228.64
USC Marshall School of Business27$70000
Texas (McCombs)33$108,788
Illinois (Gies)35$68,238
Columbia University16$70000
Georgia Tech (Scheller)36$60000
Georgetown (McDonough)39$85,644
Boston (Questrom)43$77,500

1USD ($)= INR 71.22 (January 5, 2020)

Masters in Finance in USA- Admission Process

International students prefer the USA as the ultimate destination for its academic excellence. The diversity in the land allows the students to interact with culturally diversified entities. The applicants must know the trivial things required for the admission process in MS in Finance in the USA. Admission process in USA requires a number of documents. The detailed admission requirements are given below across the colleges.

MIT Sloan School of Management

It is one of the best business schools in the USA, located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It offers courses on finance both at the graduate and postgraduate level (Ph.D.). Basic requirements for the admission process in MIT Sloan School of Management are as follows

  • Course duration: 12-18 months
  • Application deadlines: January 6, 2020
  • Application Fee: Non-refundable amount of $150 transferred via credit card
  • GMAT: 700-770
  • GRE: 320+
  • GPA: 3.7
  • TOEFL: 90
  • IELTS: 7
  • Letters of Recommendation: A minimum of 3 letters
  • Resume: Times New Roman document with 10 font size
  • Writing Samples: 3 short answers should be written with no more than 200 words
  • Video question: Need to upload a one minute video for introduction

UC Berkeley Haas School of Business

The motto of this famous b-school is “New Thinking for the New Economy”. At UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, the students get acquainted with the real world of financial markets. They accept students across disciplines to come up with diverse perspectives towards the financial sector. Academic requirements for the admission process are as follow

  • Course duration: 12 months
  • Application deadlines: April 2, 2020 (For Round 2)
  • Application fee: $275 paid via credit card
  • GPA: 3.42 to 3.90
  • GMAT: 680-760
  • GRE: 320
  • TOEFL: 90
  • IELTS: 7
  • Letters of Recommendations: 2 letters of recommendation
  • Application essays
  • Video Essay: A minimum of 2 minutes video for introduction to the future class

UCLA Anderson School of Management

This b school introduced this MS in finance course to improve the quantitative skills of the students. Within the curriculum, the students get the opportunity to study creative case studies around the global financial markets. The academic requirements for UCLA Anderson School of Management are as follows:

  • Course duration: 15 months
  • Application deadline: March 1, 2020 (for round 2)
  • Application fee: $200 paid via credit card
  • GPA: 3.5
  • GMAT: 716 (average)
  • GRE: 320+
  • TOEFL: 100+
  • IELTS: 7
  • Letters of recommendation: 2 letters of recommendations (academic or professional)
  • Application essays: The applicant has to write 2 essays. (1st essay is of 750 words explaining the analytical skills of the applicant to solve a problem, 2nd essay is also of 750 words explaining why is this the correct career path. Another optional essay of 375 words saying about the potential to excel in this program.)
  • Resume: Updated professional CV along with employment gaps (if any)

USC Marshall School of Business

The students who want to excel in the realms of the financial sector can opt USC Marshall School of Business for its MS in Finance program. This B school creates global leaders in business by providing vast knowledge in business environment and its management. The finance program is also offered at the PhD level. The academic requirements to take admissions in this world-class b school are as follows

  • Course duration: 12 months
  • Application deadline: March 15 for summer term
  • Application fee: $155
  • GPA: 3.46
  • GMAT: 706 (average)
  • GRE: 324
  • TOEFL: 90 or above with 20 in each section
  • IELTS: 6.5 or above with 6 or above on each band
  • Letters of recommendations: 2 letters of recommendations (provided either by professor or professional under whom the applicant has worked)
  • Application essay: An essay about the reason why to opt MS in Finance from USC Marshall School of Business

Texas (McCombs)

MS in Finance program in Texas (McCombs) is offered in just 10 months. In the class profile of 2020, the average percentage of international students present in the class is 18%. This university also prefers female students over the male. Average percentage of female students in class is 79%. The basic requirements to take admissions in MS in Finance in Texas (McCombs) are as follows:

  • Course duration: 10 months
  • Application deadline: January 27, 2020
  • Application fee: $90
  • GPA: 3.49
  • GMAT: 687 (Average)
  • GRE: 315 (Average)
  • TOEFL: 105 (with a minimum of 24 in each section)
  • IELTS: 7.5 (with a minimum of 7.5 on each band)
  • Letters of recommendations: two letters of recommendations
  • Resume: The professional resume will be uploaded in MPA Application Resume Template. It should be in a length of 1page with ½ to ¾ inch margin width on all sides. Resume will be written in 10-12 point font in Calibri font
  • Statement of Purpose essay: The applicant has to write an essay behind the reason for choosing the Masters in Finance program.

Illinois (Gies)

MS in Finance is a degree offered in Illinois (Gies) in a 15 months program. This academic program stands 6th in the USA for its comprehensive curriculum as needed by the industry. The academic requirements for MS in Finance in Illinois (Gies) are as follows:

  • Course duration: 15 months
  • Application deadline: March 15, 2020
  • Application fee: $90
  • GPA: 3.41
  • GMAT: 686 (average)
  • GRE: 317 (average)
  • TOEFL: 103 or greater
  • IELTS: 7.5
  • Letters of Recommendations: 3 letters of recommendations from professional or academic sources
  • SOP: 3 application essays will be written in 300 words (minimum) on topics likes
    • What is the main area of interest in Finance?
    • What are the career goals at the completion of the program?
    • What is the reason to choose a career path in Finance?
  • Resume: Updated professional CV in 1page

Columbia University

Master of Science in Financial Economics from Columbia University is a degree that sharpens the theoretical and quantitative tools of the students. The finance program is also offered at PhD level but the students prefer this short term of course for the better understanding of the industry. The academic requirements for Master of Science in Financial Economics are as follows:

  • Course duration: 24 months
  • Application Deadline: January 7, 2020 (for fall semester)
  • Application Fee: $100
  • GPA: 3.85 (must complete the undergraduate degree in subjects related to statistics, microeconomics, linear algebra, matrix theory, calculus, computer programming)
  • GMAT: 724(Average)
  • GRE: 327 (Average)
  • TOEFL: 109
  • IELTS: 7.5 (with a minimum of 7 in each section)
  • Letters of Recommendations: 2 letters of recommendations either from managers or professors
  • SOP: 2 essays with both in 250-500 words
    • How educational goals help the students in achieving the professional achievements
    • How MS in Finance will help in attaining career goals
  • Resume: Updated CV on one page

Georgia Tech (Scheller)

Masters in Finance at Georgia Tech allows its students to accept the challenges given by the global financial world. The university focuses primarily to understand how the global financial markets change with change in climate. In this course of program, the students get an overview of quantitative and computational skills required to improve the models for better financial theory. The academic requirements for Master in Finance in Georgia Tech are as follows

  • Course duration: 18-21 months
  • Application deadlines: February 15, 2020 (For fall semester)
  • Application fee: $85
  • GPA: 3.6
  • GMAT: 696 (average)
  • GRE: 322.4 (average)
  • TOEFL: 95 with a minimum of 19 in each section
  • IELTS: 7 with a minimum of 6.5 in listening, speaking, reading and 5.5 in writing
  • Letters of recommendations: a minimum of 3 letters of recommendations from professor or professional (under whom the applicant has worked)
  • SOP: 2 essays with a word limit of 1500 characters (including spaces)
    • What are the career goals after completion of MS degree?
    • Any specific reason in the application of the applicant as compared to others.
  • Resume: Updated CV with details on one page

Georgetown (McDonough)

MS in Finance from Georgetown (McDonough) is an accomplished course program designed for the students to deepen the technical skills around finance. The coursework gives an outlook to the global market and allows students to use analytical skills to make ethical decisions. The academic requirements for Georgetown (McDonough) are as follows

  • Course duration: 21 months
  • Application deadlines: April 17, 2020 (for round 4)
  • Application fee: $175
  • GPA: 3.2
  • GMAT: 674 (average)
  • GRE: 320 (average)
  • TOEFL: 100
  • IELTS: 7.5
  • Letters of recommendations: 2 letters of recommendations one from professor and other is from professional
  • Resume: Updated CV with not longer than 1page
  • SOP: 2 essays explaining the reason to choose this particular course of the program and the career goals after completion of the program.

Boston (Questrom)

Masters in Finance from Boston University, Questrom School of Businessis a world-renowned program that teaches mathematical, computer and data analytical tools to help the students to gain practical skills required for the financial market. In this program, the students get an opportunity to work in a reputed firm to know more about the financial world. The academic requirements for Masters in Finance from Boston University, Questrom School of Business are as follows

  • Course duration: 17 months
  • Application deadlines: November 6, 2019
  • Application fee: $125
  • GPA: 3.62
  • GMAT: 720 (average)
  • GRE: 330
  • TOEFL: 104
  • IELTS: 6.5
  • Letters of recommendations: two LORs from professor and professional
  • Resume: Updated resume

Master in Finance in USA: Cost of Attendance

Master in Finance in the USA is an expensive course program for international students. Other than tuition fees, the students have to spend any amount to sustain a life in the cities of the USA. Cost of attendance in these above-mentioned universities are given below:

Cost of Attendance

Master in Finance in the USA is a short term course with a huge return on investment. For most of international students it is quite difficult to sustain the livelihood in the USA. The students can opt to stay either inside or outside the campus premise to complete the course structure of Masters of Finance in USA. Most of the universities have the cost of attendance varying between $114267 and $130644. Only two universities (MIT Sloan & Texas McCombs) have huge costs of attendance. Such a huge cost of attendance is due to its urban location as well as its wide horizon of the curriculum. Due to such wide availability of different kinds of program of studies, the students can also opt for the subjects as per choices. Besides, the students also land up in high range salary packages after studying in these universities. So even in the short term, it is a huge investment from the student’s end but in long term, it will be quite fruitful in terms of career path. International students must take a detailed tour of the cost of living in USA before making a decision on choosing the right university.

USA Study Visa: Document Required and Process

The USA has different types of visas. F1 is used for those who want to pursue academics in universities in the USA. The US study visa is issued post submission of the following documents:

  • University Acceptance Letter
  • All academic documents (Transcripts)
  • Migration, provisional and character certificates
  • Birth Certificate
  • Original I-20 signed and approved by both the University authority and candidate
  • Language Proficiency certificate
  • GRE scorecard
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • Resume
  • Sponsorship letter from sponsor
  • Relationship certificate with sponsor
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Financial Proof
  • Last 6-month’s bank transaction and balance certificate
  • Assets valuation
  • Pay SEVIS fee before VISA interview
  • Bring SEVIS paid receipt during visa interview

Once these documents have been submitted, the applicant will be invited for an interview process. Visa will be issued only if the applicant has cleared their visa interview.

Scholarships for International students in USA for Masters in Finance

Due to huge tuition fees, most of the international students avail financial aid for easy completion of degree. The scholarships in USA for international students are as follows

MIT Sloan School of ManagementOGE Administered FellowshipsPartial waiver of tuition fees
UC Berkeley Haas School of BusinessThe Chengchun "Arthur" Qi Book Scholarship$1000
UCLA Anderson School of ManagementInlaks Shivdasani Foundation ScholarshipUp to $100000
USC Marshall School of BusinessMerit based scholarshipPartial tuition fees
Texas (McCombs)--
Illinois (Gies)Golden ScholarshipsPartial tuition expense
Columbia UniversityFederal work-study programVaries
Georgia Tech (Scheller)Graduate AssistantshipsMonthly salary in exchange of 14hrs/week work commitment
Georgetown (McDonough)Merit-based scholarshipsVaries
Boston (Questrom)Dean’s Scholarship programPortion of tuition fees waiving off

Job prospect for Master in Finance in USA

The graduates of Master in Finance in the USA can land up with lucrative job roles in the global financial sector. In this booming financial world, the finance graduates are the ones who can suggest the organization about the upcoming economic risks or the strategies to make it worthy. Job opportunities in the USA for international students are higher for its booming economic status. The finance graduates pave their paths in these global economic markets with analytical skills. The job profiles of the students recruited from the university along with its salary are given below

Name of the universityAverage SalaryTop Recruiters
MIT Sloan School of Management$149,000Goldman Sachs; Alphadyne Asset Management; Barclays; JP Morgan Chase & Co.
UC Berkeley Haas School of Business$140000Netflix; Airbnb; EY; Morgan Stanley; Twitter; UberEasts; Nike
UCLA Anderson School of Management$100000Sancus Capital; Citigroup; Aspen Capital; Bank of Hope; Travix
USC Marshall School of Business$100,000Reynolds Advisory Partners; Disney; East West Bank; Target Enterprises; The Spartan Group
Texas (McCombs)$155,000Deloitte, Wells Fargo, Dimensional Fund Advisors, 
Illinois (Gies)$82000Bloomberg; KPMG; Enfusion; Nanhua; PwC
Columbia University$130000A T Kearney; Microsoft; Bank of America; Oliver Wyman; Samsung
Georgia Tech (Scheller)$96187UBS; Millenium Advisors; Blackrock; Bank of America; Invescp
Georgetown (McDonough)$121273Gallup; American Express; Accenture; Citi; M&T Bank
Boston (Questrom)$82000Haitong Securities; Citic securities; Deutsche Bank; Fidelity

Apart from these on-campus placements, the students can also update the resumes on online job portals like LinkedIn, Indeed, Splashfind,, ZipRecruiter and many more. These job search engines will help the graduates to find out the best available job profiles available in the finance sector.

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