View Full Version : PhD Question

08-24-2007, 09:28 PM
Hello All

I had a few questions about a finance PhD and my chances. First allow me to give a summary of myself.

I went to a pretty well known LAC and did well, 3.8 GPA with a Finance major. I took all of the normal Finance classes and have 1-2 years of research experience. After leaving school I now work at an Investment Bank. I plan to stay only a year before moving to a less intensive job to allow me to take the next 2 years to take some graduate school level courses and prepare for graduate school.

I am not a star but I am a smart person who is well committed. My goal is to attend a New England school and then teach at a New England school. I am more interested in teaching introductory finance courses and helping students find their way into finance and aiding them in the steps of both learning and finding a career. I would also like to teach MBA level courses.

I am not trying to find a new way or win a noble prize. I rather get a good salary after teaching for a few years, do research, and consult on the side. I just want to teach and help people.

I took the GMAT and received a 750. I have taken only Calc to Calc II. What schools will this attitude land me in? What are my chances? What can I do in the next few years to better my profile? Keeping in mind that this year is a waste because I work 80-90 hours a week.

Also, will it hurt me at all to leave a bank after a year to take a financial leadership position at Lockheed Martin, working out of Boston? I want to do this to allow me to take courses and to be able to focus on things and not work my life away.

By the way the school I want to get into the most is BC or of course Harvard Business Econ program.

Weigh in please.

08-24-2007, 09:33 PM
To be frank, your goals are probably not compatible with those of the Harvard Biz Econ program. They want people who do aspire to be stars, to find a new way, or to win the Nobel prize. Wanting to teach and mentor students is an equally good goal, but not the one that HBS has in mind for its PhD students.

You will be happier to land in a department that supports your goal and your reasons for wanting to get a PhD, rather than in a department that either pushes you in a direction you don't want to go, or penalizes you (in terms of less support) for deviating from the departmental goals.

08-24-2007, 09:42 PM
Thanks for the quick response. Do you recommend any programs?

08-24-2007, 09:51 PM
I don't know the b-schools all that well, but I'd start by looking at where the faculty at schools where you would like to teach received their PhDs. Pay more attention to young professors than tenured faculty, since the degrees of recent hires reflect current job market trends.