Testimonials

CFRM Graduate Degree

I chose this program because I love its strong teaching resources including Chief Economist, Chief Risk Officer from Russell Investments and Director of Risk Management from BlackRock. Also, the curriculum of the program is very practical and well...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Cheryl Fang

I chose this program because I love its strong teaching resources including Chief Economist, Chief Risk Officer from Russell Investments and Director of Risk Management from BlackRock. Also, the curriculum of the program is very practical and well tailored for a career in asset management and risk management. The quality [of teaching] is very high. Many professors are working in the finance industry and have 10+ years' experience. They share their insight when giving lectures and design projects based on what is really going on in the industry.

One policy I feel really excited about this program is it allows students to have at least a year's internship experience while you are taking courses, if you choose corresponding paths in the program. An internship experience like this will well position you in the job market after graduation. The only "weakness" in this program is it is still relatively young, but it also means everyone in the program are working much harder than relatively mature programs. And we feel so proud that we have seen rapid and dramatic progress along the way.

The career services are functioning very well. We have well maintained relationships with many companies on the West Coast. Also, our program is sponsoring lots of CFA networking events, where we can network with professionals from top companies. In addition, we have tours to Chicago and New York, where many students get internships and full-time jobs. Students are from top universities and companies around the world. Some of them have (multiple) master's degree or PhD degree. And some of the part-time students are working in top investment management companies. I am currently having a year-round internship with an asset management company on the West Coast.

Cheryl Fang

I am a recent graduate of the program and am currently employed with an accounting firm. This was one of the few programs which was offered by a math dept and as such was the only program I applied to. Faculty members involved with the program are...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Riddhiman Roy

I am a recent graduate of the program and am currently employed with an accounting firm. This was one of the few programs which was offered by a math dept and as such was the only program I applied to. Faculty members involved with the program are leaders in their respective fields and have a vast amount of experience in the field of quantitative finance. The curriculum is very well conceived and the breadth of topics should keep people new to the field as well as veterans equally engaged. One of the most notable aspects of the program is how well academic work is fused with programming and other application oriented work. One of the key takeaways for me was how to quickly transform complex mathematical models into functional code which can then be used to solve problems. Though there is a lot of focus on being able to use R for problem solving, there are enough resources and incentives to learn other languages like Python and C++. I believe the focus on risk management is unique to the program. Quantitative risk management is not only complex (mathematically) but very relevant and the program is well equipped to provide its students with the right knowledge and the right set of tools to help them succeed. Courses are challenging, some more than others but enough to keep the students very busy. I had some great teaching assistants who made the whole experience much more enjoyable.

The program attracts exceptional students from all across the globe. Students come from a variety of different academic and professional backgrounds. The program has made it a point to develop good working relationships with a lot of corporate entities thus ensuring good future prospects for its students. A lot of courses are offered by industry veterans who work for firms like BlackRock and Russell Investments. This ensures that professors are not the only resource available to the students. I enjoyed my time at UW and would recommend the program to anyone considering a career in the field of quantitative finance.

Riddhiman Roy

After having worked in the software industry for about 4 years, I have been thinking of pursuing the MBA in Finance. However, when I came across the MS in Computational Finance and Risk Management program at the University of Washington, I realized...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Joy Seth

After having worked in the software industry for about 4 years, I have been thinking of pursuing the MBA in Finance. However, when I came across the MS in Computational Finance and Risk Management program at the University of Washington, I realized the program completely aligned with my interests and the curriculum that would prepare me for the industry that I wouldn't have achieved with the MBA. The bottom-up approach enabled me to understand the fundamentals of the financial world, and prepared me for the key advanced concepts including quantitative risk management, portfolio construction and optimization, trading systems, and simulation techniques. The heavy emphasis on R has also allowed me to incorporate my technical background into financial modelling. I recently graduated from the program, and I must say that words are not enough to justify the excellent curriculum and professors that the program has to offer. Above all, the encouragement and support from the faculty has been the key driving motivation for me to succeed in this program.

Joy Seth

I enrolled in this program last year (summer 2012), with good Engineering background and no finance background. Before I finally decided to come here, I had multiple choices, programs with good location, or longer history, or better reputation. I made...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Simeon Yu

I enrolled in this program last year (summer 2012), with good Engineering background and no finance background. Before I finally decided to come here, I had multiple choices, programs with good location, or longer history, or better reputation. I made my decision to come to CFRM at UW, and never felt regret for this decision.
Besides the good reputation of Applied Maths department -- which runs CFRM, the executive team and faculty of CFRM are always trying their best to help students, and improve the program. There are bunch of facts, I don't think I can list them all. Let me try some which I think meaningful to me:
1. Great curriculum. Program director and faculty have good connection with industry, they keep adjusting the curriculum based on the most recent feedback from industry.
2. Good industry background. Besides the faculty with diversified background, quite a few instructors are invited from industry, with big name and title. The program tries to keep good balance between academia and industry, to make sure students can both get enough quant knowledge and be exposed to the real market.
3. Wonderful career service. Usually, in US universities, there are offices of career service ran by departments/colleges/universities. In CFRM, there are extra career service. Every year, CFRM schedules workshops by experienced HR professionals from industry, and there is also a program manager, who came from industry with senior title, to promote CFRM, build and keep relationship with companies, help students with any interview-related issues, and negotiate for students with prospective employers.

Frankly I am one of the lucky students benefiting from CFRM. I got an internship this Apr in a FoF in Seattle local with the help of CFRM faculty. One year and a half ago, I made my decision to come to CFRM at Seattle, I don't know whether it is the best decision and I will never know. But I am happy with it and satisfied with what I've got so far.

OK, wrap up --- You might not feel confident with such a new program -- short history, not well-reputed(YET), but I guarantee you that CFRM faculty and staffs are doing their best to make everything better and better.

Higher levels of uncertainty are associated with higher potential returns. You must know this as a prospective quant expert.

Simeon Yu

I have been very fascinated by the rapidly changing financial industry for a while. With my Electrical Engineering undergraduate background, I decided to pursue a quantitative finance advanced degree and the Computational Finance and Risk Management...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Benjamin Peng

I have been very fascinated by the rapidly changing financial industry for a while. With my Electrical Engineering undergraduate background, I decided to pursue a quantitative finance advanced degree and the Computational Finance and Risk Management program at University of Washington came to my eye at that time. After evaluating several other options, I decided to relocate to west coast to start the program and it turns out that the CFRM program and UW have never let me down.

The curriculum is intense and equipped me with applicable knowledge of finance. As a student with engineering background, I picked up my sense of finance and economics here. One reason why I especially love the curriculum is that there are many courses taught by working professionals in the real financial industry and their insights offered me much more than what I could have learnt from textbooks. Another key feature of the curriculum is the use of R programming, which I believe is a successful attempt and benefited me a lot when I was trying to search for internships. Instead of just learning ‘knowledge’, the program also teaches us ‘skills’ that can be leveraged in daily work. We have learnt how to implement ideas into products whatever we prefer to use R, SQL, VBA, C++ or Excel. Equipped with programming skills and financial knowledge learnt in the program, we get better prepared for future job hunting.

The career services are also excellent. The program assigned a dedicated staff to help students launch internships and full-time positions. Faculty and other staff have also tried to help students build connections with local financial industry and provide useful advice for their career path. Almost all of my classmates successfully found a summer internship during this year and some of them luckily get their internships extended to year-long or full-time positions.

The CFRM program is relatively new but promising. The program director tried to offer students more options to fit their objectives. Students can choose to take a regular path, a Risk Management path or a Computing path based on their interest and background. I have witnessed the efforts that our faculty and staff have devoted into the program and the growing of the CFRM program. I highly encourage students who want to learn quantitative finace to consider the CFRM program at UW. I look forward to seeing a bigger success for the program in the near future.

Benjamin Peng

This is a great program under the UW applied mathematics department, which has a good reputation across the U.S.. The program is quite mathematically rigorous, and it equips the students with solid theoretical and practical knowledge in quantitative...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Tim Li

This is a great program under the UW applied mathematics department, which has a good reputation across the U.S.. The program is quite mathematically rigorous, and it equips the students with solid theoretical and practical knowledge in quantitative finance.

I had several choices when I got the admission from UW last year, and finally I chose this program because of its curriculum and faculty. First of all, the curriculum is well balanced and very suitable for the students who already have some background in finance (like me) and those who don’t have. The program delivers not only basic courses but also many advanced topics in computational finance, which arm students with enough knowledge and strong skills to pursue a career in the industry. Compared with many other mathematical finance programs, it focuses more on the statistics and the applications, which, I think, are extremely important in the modern finance. Throughout the entire program, R programming is integrated with each course and enables students to implement theories and ideas in practice. It was also very helpful in my pursuit of the internship. Moreover, the faculty is excellent and the career service is wonderful. The program has a high teaching quality and the staffs here also provide very useful career-related guidance and training; they also actively build connections with the industry, and help students finding internships and full-time jobs.

Although the program is young, it is very promising. I really think that my choice is right and recommend it to those who want to have a career in quantitative finance industry.

Tim Li

UW CF&RM program definitely deserves a 5-star rating for its well-designed curriculum, excellent faculty and great career service. I came from a pure finance background with limited programming skills. CF&RM program offered me a way to R, SQL...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Sophia Mao

UW CF&RM program definitely deserves a 5-star rating for its well-designed curriculum, excellent faculty and great career service. I came from a pure finance background with limited programming skills. CF&RM program offered me a way to R, SQL, VBA, C++ programming which is credential for future job-hunting. We can work closely with excellent faculty from academia or industry in each course. Our faculty and staff did a lot of effort to career service, from tutoring the interview preparation to extending connections with the industry. I never regret choosing this program.

Sophia Mao

I was admitted into the program in 2012. The program has been excellent thus far and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. The classes were interactive and professors are very supportive and encouraging. They are not only helping us with the course work, but...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Santhoshi Dharmireddi

I was admitted into the program in 2012. The program has been excellent thus far and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. The classes were interactive and professors are very supportive and encouraging. They are not only helping us with the course work, but also provide excellent advice in career planning. In fact, they have a dedicated staff to help students find right internships and full-time offers. We also have industry faculty from Blackrock, and Russell Investments, which was very helpful in understanding real world examples of the financial models. With the quarter system in University of Washington, the course can get intense towards the end of the quarter.

Overall, I’m very happy to have gone through the program and now I’m working as a Risk Management Intern in the risk oversight division of a public utility company. I’d highly recommend to anyone who has a strong background in mathematics and has a keen interest in finance.

Santhoshi Dharmireddi

I am a recent graduate from the CF&RM at UW (class of 2012) and I am currently working at a pension fund in Texas. In my view, the CF&RM is a 5-star program. It is a 5-star program because it offers eveything a student would need to pursue a...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Satitpong Chantarajirawong

I am a recent graduate from the CF&RM at UW (class of 2012) and I am currently working at a pension fund in Texas. In my view, the CF&RM is a 5-star program. It is a 5-star program because it offers eveything a student would need to pursue a career in the financial industry. The program equips students with a very strong background in mathematics, statistics, programming and the financial concepts required in industry; which I believe are essential skillsets needed when starting a career in this field. Students will learn both theoretical concepts and will be exposed to practical applications taught by academic professors and industry practitioners alike.
The knowledge base learned at school has made me feel very comfortable and at ease when applying it at work. I have found this to be especially true when working in areas that demanded strong and deep knowledge in portfolio optimization, asset allocation and quantitative risk management.
Having attended the CF&RM at the University of Washington has been one of the best decisions I have made in my career! I would highly recommend prospective students give the CF&RM at the University of Washington a hard look!

Satitpong Chantarajirawong

I had an undergraduate degree in EE, a MS degree in Transportation Planning and worked as a consultant in transportation infrastructure planning for 2 years before joining the CFRM program. I applied for CFRM program only. Initially, I chose this...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Xin Chen

I had an undergraduate degree in EE, a MS degree in Transportation Planning and worked as a consultant in transportation infrastructure planning for 2 years before joining the CFRM program. I applied for CFRM program only. Initially, I chose this program because my family was in Seattle, but it turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made. The program offers a variety of refresher courses, including probability & statistics, R programming and introduction to capital markets so that students coming from different backgrounds can be better prepared for the program. [As far as teaching,] the more theoretical courses are taught by professors from the academia while the practically-oriented courses are mostly taught by experienced professionals from the industry. The instructors are very familiar with the topics they are teaching and often offer insights of their own besides covering the standard textbook material.

The program is extremely flexible in that aside from a few core courses, the student is free to choose their combination of elective courses to achieve their own goals under the assistance of the program advisor, such as a computing pathway or a risk management pathway. As the name of the program suggests, the program has an abundance of courses concerning risk management, which has become a central topic in the industry after the financial crisis. This is a relatively new program so the alumni network may not be as developed as some of the older programs. However, the program has been working very hard at building networks with the industry. Besides the standard career services, such as job postings and resume revising, the program also have a 3-day interview coaching session given by professional interview coaches. The program is especially active in marketing the students to local firms for internship and full-time employment opportunities.

Regarding the course material, I would like to see an addition of operational risk management course in the curriculum. I am currently a PhD student in Applied Mathematics at University of Washington focusing on the understanding and quantitative modeling of systemic risk in the financial system. The inspiration, knowledge and skill sets I acquired from the CFRM program definitely prepared me well to study this exciting area with both theoretical and practical implications.

Xin Chen

Before joining the CFRM program, I had a Bachelor of Technology in Electrical Engineering degree and I had been working in that field for 3 years. [I chose this program because] the tuition fee was among the least as compared to other programs. One of...

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CFRM Graduate Degree

Yadwinder Garg

Research Affiliates, LLC, Newport Beach, CA.

Before joining the CFRM program, I had a Bachelor of Technology in Electrical Engineering degree and I had been working in that field for 3 years. [I chose this program because] the tuition fee was among the least as compared to other programs. One of my friends was already doing a PhD at UW when I applied, so I thought it would be easy for me live in Seattle.

Quality of Teaching is great. Instructors are really helpful. Large emphasis is given to the homework assignments which are meaningful and add a lot to the learning. The program offers almost a perfect balance of breadth and depth in the field of quantitative finance. All the lectures are recorded and available online. This becomes really handy later on, as you can continue to do internship/work and attend the school at the same time. When I was attending this program, it was still evolving and the syllabus of some courses wasn't very comprehensive. Now, with feedback from students, it's more thorough and offers several elective courses. Being a new program, there is a slight disadvantage when you apply for jobs and the career fair at UW doesn't get many finance firms. But the faculty and program adviser work hard to get you interviews and get placed. Overall, my experience with the career services was good.

I was shy and didn't interact much with my class in person, but the online discussion forums were great. Several online students were working professionals and their perspective added a lot to the knowledge. Most of the courses in first year have smaller assignments and no big projects. So when you apply for internships, you don't have much to write on your resume. It's difficult to implement, but I feel if there was a way of doing some meaningful projects in the first year itself then it would add a lot of value to the resume and give you a great point to talk about in an interview.

Yadwinder Garg

Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

There are many programs about finance, but I feel the M.S. Degree in Computational Finance and Risk Management in Washington University is unique and perfect in many aspects. Impressive curriculum, no better way to learn than by practicing with R,...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Aristides Briceno

MERCER, RSC Retirement, Risk & Finance Consulting

There are many programs about finance, but I feel the M.S. Degree in Computational Finance and Risk Management in Washington University is unique and perfect in many aspects. Impressive curriculum, no better way to learn than by practicing with R, very convenient by allowing me to watch the classes at any time and review them as needed, highly qualified professors, excellent support with Teacher Assistants, share knowledge/questions/answers with other students, and finally and very important, in a prestigious university. It is a challenging program and I enjoy learning from it. Definitely, this M.S. Degree has been one of the best decisions in my life. There are no words to express my gratitude to all and in special, to my professors and Teaching Assistants.

 

Aristides Briceno

Early in my investment career I knew that I would benefit from going back to graduate school, but I didn’t find a program that matched my interests focusing on risk, portfolio construction, and statistics.  Several years later I read about UW Applied...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Brian Ertley

Senior Risk Manager

Early in my investment career I knew that I would benefit from going back to graduate school, but I didn’t find a program that matched my interests focusing on risk, portfolio construction, and statistics.  Several years later I read about UW Applied Mathematics offering an online Certificate in Computational Finance.  UW distinguished itself from other programs by focusing on exactly on these areas of interest.  I looked carefully into the quality of the instructors and faculty and was impressed by their academics and business experience, so I signed up for the Certificate program, taking one class at a time.  My first two classes vastly exceeded my expectations for both course contents and instructor quality.  One thing that I hadn’t expected was the high quality of students in my classes, which included many industry professionals.  Based on my very positive experience in the certificate program, I applied for and was admitted to the first cohort in the online version of the new MS-degree program in Computational Finance and Risk Management.  During the MS program I studied portfolio construction under Doug Martin, financial econometrics from Eric Zivot, investment modeling from Guy Yollin, and risk management from three practitioners.  UW’s MS-CFRM program has already opened new doors for me.  I was fortunate to simultaneously have two very good buy-side job offers to choose between.  I’m currently working at a large well-known firm and every day I’m leveraging the combination of my prior professional experience and what I learned in the UW programs. I couldn’t be happier with my experience.

 

Brian Ertley

As an employee of a global banking and financial services firm seeking a highly quantitative finance program, I had the very good fortune of enrolling in the UW Computational Finance Certificate Program in 2011.  This superbly designed program of four...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Frank Dooley

As an employee of a global banking and financial services firm seeking a highly quantitative finance program, I had the very good fortune of enrolling in the UW Computational Finance Certificate Program in 2011.  This superbly designed program of four courses taught by a most distinguished faculty turned out to be an amazingly powerful learning experience for me, providing me with tools to unlock the mathematics of current financial articles as well as exposing me to "cutting edge" coding techniques presented mostly in the context of the R programming language.  The great care taken in the design and delivery of this program became evident to me as the courses proceeded. As a person with a strong actuarial background, I really appreciated the mathematical knowledge I gained, especially as regards areas such as Expected Tail Loss, portfolio optimization and futures mathematics.  With the theoretical (which definitely includes philosophical) knowledge there was balanced a lot of practical applications through great and varied R programming exercises.
     But one of the greatest experiences for me as an online student was the very pleasant experience of working with a group of faculty, staff and students who genuinely went out of their way to offer help and discussion. Professors and teaching assistants took great time, effort and care to help students who were working through tough problems. These professors and teaching assistants were of the very highest quality I have ever seen. Special homework sessions were made available for online participants.  Students used a discussion forum to work through problems which led me personally to success on some problems that initially seemed intractable for me, which I believe falls under the rubric of "mind-stretching". 
     And that leads to me to a comment on what are often deemed the all-important but hard to define "intangibles" that make something not just good, but exemplary .  These involve a culture or "spirit" of folks working together to create a great environment for learning as well as an emphasis on ethics and integrity. Call it "good will" or whatever you'd like, the UW has it and I am very glad to be a part of it.
     Because of the quality of my experience with the Computational Finance program, I applied for and was accepted for admission as a candidate for the M.S. in Computational Finance and Risk Management. So the certificate program turned out to be a great opportunity for me to pursue the Master's degree.
 
 

 

Frank Dooley

As managing director of research for a large quantitative asset manager, I began in the UW CompFin program with a three-quarter certificate sequence of courses during 2010-11. Based on my satisfaction with the courses and instructors I did not...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Paul Bouchey

Parametric Portfolio Associates

As managing director of research for a large quantitative asset manager, I began in the UW CompFin program with a three-quarter certificate sequence of courses during 2010-11. Based on my satisfaction with the courses and instructors I did not hesitate to continue with the MS degree in Computational Finance and Risk Management. I especially appreciated the depth of the mathematical instruction—you can't get this level of understanding through self-study, the CFA, or through on-the-job training. The MS in Computational Finance and Risk Management at the UW has the Applied Mathematics department as its home, and consequently provides a very strong foundation in the statistical and analytical concepts of quantitative finance. However, the ability to solve a partial differential equation or derive the Black-Scholes model alone won't land you a job or help you keep it. What this program does to help prepare students for a successful career in quantitative finance is create a solid link between theory and practice.  It accomplishes this through a focus on R programming, a specific course on electronic trading, and through the faculty—which are a healthy mix of academics with industry experience and leading industry professionals contributing their knowledge and experience as Affiliate Instructors.

 

Paul Bouchey

I have worked as a software engineer at Google and currently work as a research software development engineer at Microsoft Research.  I am an online part-time student in the UW Applied Mathematics Department’s Masters in Computational Finance and Risk...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Riyaaz Shaik

I have worked as a software engineer at Google and currently work as a research software development engineer at Microsoft Research.  I am an online part-time student in the UW Applied Mathematics Department’s Masters in Computational Finance and Risk Management.  My objective for enrolling in this program is to prepare myself for the long-term goal of pursuing a career in quantitative finance.  I am very appreciative of the excellent mode of teaching and support always given in the program.  I had taken an online course at another top university where the online student group was treated as a stepchild throughout.   In this UW online program the instruction and help are simply the best.
 

 

Riyaaz Shaik

I am a computer scientist had previously worked in finance at the Prediction Company where I learned some aspects of quantitative finance.  The University of Washington’s online M.S. degree program in Computational Finance and Risk Management, offered...

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Certificate to MS-CFRM Transition

Ian Kaplan

I am a computer scientist had previously worked in finance at the Prediction Company where I learned some aspects of quantitative finance.  The University of Washington’s online M.S. degree program in Computational Finance and Risk Management, offered by the Department of Applied Mathematics, has given me a great gift: it has taught me how much I still have to learn. My professors have challenged me, supported my learning and recognized my effort. They have helped lay the foundation that I will build on for many years to come. I will always be grateful that I had the chance to be a student in this M.S. degree program.
 

 

Ian Kaplan

Certificates

The Computational Finance certificate program at the University of Washington was a fantastic experience for me.  I felt like I received a strong theoretical base of knowledge, along with plenty of applications relevant to industry work.   Within the...

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Certificates

Braden Moore

The Computational Finance certificate program at the University of Washington was a fantastic experience for me.  I felt like I received a strong theoretical base of knowledge, along with plenty of applications relevant to industry work.   Within the first week of the first class I was using new techniques in my job researching financial issues for the federal government that I had learned in the class.  The professors bring a substantial amount of experience to the table as both academics and practitioners.  There is no doubt in my mind that earning the certificate has had a positive influence on my career.

 

Braden Moore

The Online Computational Finance program gave me a special opportunity to learn the mathematical and statistical foundations of financial instruments and portfolios.  The courses were taught by excellent professors who not only know the theoretical...

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Certificates

Ihor Yakymov

The Online Computational Finance program gave me a special opportunity to learn the mathematical and statistical foundations of financial instruments and portfolios.  The courses were taught by excellent professors who not only know the theoretical foundations in depth, but also work in the financial field and feel the subject from inside out.  The program was balanced very well in terms of topics and delivery. It was dynamic, interactive, and structured neatly and creatively.  It helped me to unite finance, math and programming that I use every day at my job. I am very grateful to the University of Washington for offering the program.

Ihor Yakymov

Coming from an engineering background, I wanted to expand my knowledge of investment and risk management methods in a non-Gaussian world to improve my performance at a proprietary trading firm. A coworker recommended I take the chance to learn from...

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Certificates

Michael Ward

Cheiron Trading,

Coming from an engineering background, I wanted to expand my knowledge of investment and risk management methods in a non-Gaussian world to improve my performance at a proprietary trading firm. A coworker recommended I take the chance to learn from some highly respected names in the field and sign up for the Computational Finance and Risk Management Certificate Program at University of Washington.  I am so glad he did. The program has greatly expanded my knowledge of factor models, regression analytics, and risk management, and I use all three on a daily basis. The single biggest endorsement I can give to this program is that it paid for itself before I was done with the first class. The University of Washington Applied Mathematics Department’s new M.S. degree in Computational Finance and Risk Management would be a wonderful opportunity for any engineer looking to break into the financial world, or anyone with a finance degree looking to improve their computational abilities.

 

Michael Ward