"Everyone is talking about financial innovation. But when you’ve worked in finance, you realize that there are so many unanswered questions. I came here with a lot of questions. Now, they’re getting answered."
Open a window to a new view of curricular innovation
Launched as a direct response to demand in the financial industry, our Master of Finance is a one-year program combining in-depth study of quantitative techniques with practical, hands-on business problem solving. The program prepares students for a broad range of financial careers — careers requiring analytical rigor and the ability to innovate around market challenges.
MIT Sloan’s MFin goes beyond the traditional synergies among economics, finance and accounting, to exploit the intellectual ties among finance and mathematics, statistics, operations research, computer science, and engineering. A high level of flexibility and these elective courses allow you to tailor your MFin experience to your specific area of interest and your career goals.
The MFin program kicks off with a rigorous, foundational six-week term beginning in July and teaches you to use advanced mathematical models and quantitative methods to create innovative solutions to complex finance problems. Required core courses taken in the summer immerse you in these methods, and deepen your understanding of the theoretical fundamentals in finance and corporate accounting.
Coursework is collaborative, and students work together on projects and problem sets. Team building becomes increasingly critical as the world grows more complex, and as businesses have to work across borders. Learning to develop effective teams is part of our structure and is a cornerstone of the MFin program and experience.
In addition to building your technical skills, summer coursework from the Career Development Office (CDO) also builds the “soft” skills you need to effectively enter the workplace. Coursework — both theoretical and hands-on — helps you develop your résumé, write cover letters, improve and practice behavioral and technical interviewing, sharpen your networking skills, and even polish your table etiquette. Interviews begin on campus in early September.
Action Learning — Think, Act, Reflect
MIT Sloan is the leader in Action Learning in management education. Our approach integrates theory, real-world practice, and personal reflection to develop principled, innovative leaders who solve complex problems and produce systemic change. Action Learning is an integral component of every student’s experience at MIT Sloan. It is a unique process in which students constantly refine their learning through an ongoing, iterative sequence of theory, practice, and reflection. The integration of learning through classroom theory and real-world practice is part of MIT Sloan’s DNA.
All MFin students must take at least one Action Learning course, with options including a Proseminar in Financial Engineering, a Proseminar in financial Management, or the Finance Research PracticumSM. For the Proseminars, finance faculty collaborate with leading finance experts to provide a real-time problem to a team of four to six students. After three weeks, each student team prepares a report and presents their analysis for evaluation and feedback. The teams' final presentations are given at a seminar open to the entire MIT community.
In addition to the Proseminars, you also have the opportunity to participate in an intensive, monthlong research project for a sponsor company. In the Finance Research PracticumSM, teams of three tackle more extended, full-time problems, often on-site, during the month of January. The projects are motivated by real business problems of the company sponsors and provide an opportunity for students to apply the skills they have learned in class to a business setting.
The Proseminars and the Finance Research PracticumSM have two principal goals: to bridge the gap between finance theory and finance practice and to introduce students to the broader financial community.
Sloan Innovation Period
The Sloan Innovation Period (SIP), which takes place at the midpoint of each semester, offers the opportunity to participate in a variety of leadership and research seminars and activities, all centered on the theme of innovation. SIP provides our students and faculty with a flexible, open-format time period to jointly explore the terrain that makes MIT Sloan truly unique: the combination of our research expertise, our leadership acumen, and the hands-on application of this knowledge.
Asia Study Tour and Industry Treks
Firsthand knowledge is critical to developing a broad understanding of financial markets. To expand your knowledge of careers in finance, and to extend your exposure to the financial community, we’ve incorporated two industry treks into the curriculum.
During fall SIP week, students participate in the Boston Capital Market Series and meet with industry professionals at Boston-area financial firms as well as the Federal Reserve Bank. To further understand the finance sector, MFin students can travel to Asia in the spring for a weeklong immersion in Asian finance. In Hong Kong and Singapore, students meet with four to five companies per day for a series of discussions.
Follow Your Interest
After the required summer courses, you are free to choose from a wide range of courses. With the help of faculty, industry mentors, and the CDO, you can craft the curriculum that best suits your vision and your future.
As an MFin graduate, you will leave MIT with a practical understanding of modern business, a comprehensive range of quantitative finance skills, and the applied expertise to know which approach best suits each unique circumstance.
Many career paths exist for MFin graduates. Employers seeking the skill sets of our graduates include: investment and corporate banks, brokerage firms, financial data providers, asset managers, hedge funds, venture capitalists, ratings firms, consulting firms, insurance companies, and the treasury and finance departments of major corporations and governments.
“For 35 years, we’ve been studying how companies get value from information. … We try to help organizations take a more holistic view of what they are trying to do.”
“We’re very interdisciplinary. Among the faculty in the group are an economist, a political scientist, a sociologist, and an industrial relations specialist. We’ve always made a big effort to be open to a variety of perspectives, but also to go beyond being open to them, to want to bring them in, because it makes for a richer environment.”
“I knew about American business, but not enough about what’s really become a global economy. … You can read about it all you want, but there’s no substitute for being there and seeing the context and seeing how completely different these [other countries] are.”
"The classroom itself is filled with so much collective brain power . . . it's obvious that I'm caught up in a room full of 124 of the brightest, most curious people from around the world."
“I can honestly say that when I was planning on coming to business school I never thought that witnessing the birth of a child would be included in the education. It was definitely an experience.”
“Because of the diversity of our backgrounds, when we hit the ground in Tanzania it almost was a natural play where different people assume different roles.”
“The conditions in the neighborhoods we were visiting were different than what we realized before getting there. Beyond that, what was surprising was that there weren’t surprises!”
“At MIT Sloan you have a lot of opportunities to explore entrepreneurship. Especially in a place like Kampala where you have a lot of development, entrepreneurship can be very exciting.”
“[The India Lab] program is one of the reasons I came to Sloan. ... The hands-on learning that MIT offers was a huge differentiator.”
"After we gave our recommendations, the great part was that the very next day the CEO was in the boardroom implementing them with his top vice presidents."
“You could talk about watershed management and conservation of energy all you want. But until you put numbers to it and financial analysis to it, you’re not going to get much done. I came to business school to speak that language, speak with people in terms of numbers, financial numbers so that I can get projects done.”
“One of the reasons I came to Sloan was because I wanted to be at a top MBA institution worldwide. But I also wanted access to working with the latest innovations and the highest technology that was coming out of the MIT labs.”
“I love being in a place that is such a nexus of people and ideas — people coming to learn something new and to define themselves. Being a part of that process is a real honor and a real gift.”
“We are very much an action-learning environment. The way to learn leadership is not only through reading cases, not only through learning theory — in fact we don’t want people to regurgitate the theory. We want people to take theory and to live it, use it.”
“It was really rewarding that they wanted to know what we thought. We left there being fairly certain that they will do some of the things that we suggested.”
“To overcome the economic challenges we face, we need a new generation of financial industry leaders, policymakers, and regulators who have a deep understanding of how technology drives the financial system. At MIT Sloan, I'm surrounded by an exceptionally smart group of colleagues committed to training this new generation, and by talented, passionate students eager to make a difference.”