The Finance MBA: Life Beyond Wall Street

finance programs aren't likely to change much in response to the Wall Street collapse; what will change the most are graduates' expectations

For years, finance " and more specifically, investment banking " has been the single most popular career track for MBAs. In fact, top schools like University of Pennsylvania and New York University typically send at least 45 percent of graduates to financial services and investment banking firms each year, with Wall Street absorbing the vast majority of those MBAs. That was then. This year, the sector is wheezing from the collapse of at least five major financial institutions and the loss of more than 200,000 jobs " 60,000 in New York alone.

Business-school professors and their career advisers say their finance programs aren't likely to change much in response to the Wall Street collapse; what will change the most are graduates' expectations. Investment banks that handle M&As, for instance, will still need qualified new hires. But be warned, says Ed Fredericks, a professor and career adviser at Pepperdine University's Graziadio School of Business and Management: "The jobs aren't going to be as lucrative, exciting, or crazy as they were before."


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