View Full Version : Realistic comments please! Do I aim too high?

08-29-2007, 05:18 PM
Hi guys, please evaluate my profile.


Type of Grad: Currently, I am doing a MA in econ at a relatively small university in the US.
Grad GPA: 3.75
GRE: Q:800/V:550/AWA:4.0
Math Courses: Elementary linear algebra(A), Real analysis1(A), PDE(A), Math stat (A), Adv Calc1 (currently)
Econ Courses: Undergrad/Grad econometrics(A/B), Grad Micro(A-), Grad Macro(A-), Time series(B+), Financial market(B+)
Relevant Finance Courses: Financial Management(A-)
Letters of Recommendation: 2 excellent from my advisor and Real Analysis prof and 1 good from Econ prof.
Research Experience: Apparently, none
Teaching Experience: lots of math and econ tutoring
SOP: Pretty decent but nothing special, though
Other: I am an international student and I am interested in financial economics. I also would like to apply to a Ph.D in Finance for fall 2008.

What kind of schools do you guys think I have a good chance to get in?
Are top 20 schools (in econ) too high for me? What about the finance programs?

Appreciate every comment!

08-29-2007, 07:13 PM
Your profile looks good. I think you have a good shot at getting into Economics programs that are ranked 20-60 on usnews, and a fair, but probably noticeably less certain shot, at getting into top 20 schools. This is just a guess, I know there are many students with profiles similar to yours in the top 60-20 departments, but I don't know much about the finance programs or the top 20 econ programs.

I would say you should do this:

1. Apply to a wide range of programs in terms of rankings and in terms of fields. That is, I think it might be worth to send some applications to econ and some applications to finance programs.

2. Don't apply to Economics PhD programs in departments that don't have any accomplished faculty members with interests in asset pricing/financial econometrics/or whatever other finance subject you like AND if they have a policy of not allowing their students to work with business school faculty. Actually, I heard that a more likely problem could be that the business school faculty might not always be willing to supervise Econ PhD students although Econ students are usually pretty much free to pursue a secondary field in finance or some other business subject at most universities.

08-30-2007, 03:50 AM
Thanks a lot Apropos! Your reply is very helpful.

08-30-2007, 04:48 AM
Are top 20 schools (in econ) too high for me?

Ask your advisor what he realistically thinks about your chances. It would be easy to compare your profile to that of others on this board, but then numbers are not always right.