Martin Simacek, MSc Finance 2020-21, student at Imperial College Business School standing in a park

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Hi everyone, my name is Martin, and I am an MSc Finance student from the Czech Republic. Due to the pandemic, I am currently taking the programme from the comfort of my hometown of Prague; however, I hope to return to London soon. I would like to take this opportunity to tell you a little about why I chose to study at Imperial College Business School and what my experience has been so far.

Why I chose to study at Imperial

During my third year of undergraduate studies, I started to ponder what my future path would look like. It was an easy decision to continue my education with a Master’s, however, choosing an institution was much harder. 

The first thing I did was to open the Times Higher Education Ranking and look at the Top 20 universities. No surprise that Imperial is in that ranking, but that was definitely not the only reason why I chose to apply and eventually study the programme.

The first thing that impressed me about Imperial was their personal approach, even going as far as organising information sessions across Europe where prospective students had the chance to meet recruiters and talk to each other. I had the opportunity to attend one such event in Amsterdam, and it definitely shifted my perspective on prospective business schools.

That was the first time I said to myself, “This is where I want to study”. The other reasons pretty much found themselves. Imperial is located in the financial heart of Europe, an ideal location for Finance students looking for internships and future careers. Most global banks are right around the corner from Kensington. Moreover, it is only one of a few top business schools that does not require GMAT. All in all, studying at Imperial was an easy choice to make in the end.

My favourite module so far

It is hard to say what my favourite module has been so far as I judge the modules by the professors who teach them. Despite the transition to a multi-mode teaching format, you can see that each professor is putting in the same amount of motivation and enthusiasm which really gets you interested in their teachings, meaning that I have enjoyed all modules to date.

However, if I had to pick one, I would choose the Business Valuation module that formed part of our foundations term. What made it special was that it was given by a professional in his field who actively interjected with examples from his professional career and even invited a few of his colleagues as guest speakers. The opportunity to be so heavily exposed to London’s financial world from the start of the programme was eye-opening and further persuaded me that it is the path that I want to take.

Working in groups remotely is tiring but rewarding

A significant part of the experience of doing a Master’s is the people you meet. With everything moving to a multi-mode setting, and fully remote during periods of lockdown in the UK, I was worried about this aspect of my studies. Thankfully, the Business School prepared exceptionally well for online learning, and I found the transition to meeting and working with people online to be seamless. 

It is a pleasure to work with such a diverse and interesting cohort; each person I meet on the programme has something new to teach me. MSc Finance is very coursework heavy, which gives us ample opportunity to network and meet each other. The groups get mixed up regularly meaning that you constantly work with new people.

However, remote working with others does not come without its challenges, namely, the time difference. For example, in my last group, we had individuals that were exactly 12 hours from each other which made scheduling calls a little tricky.

What the future holds for me

An Master’s in Finance at Imperial gives you a broad skillset that is applicable far beyond the Finance sector. I went into the programme persuaded that a career in Finance is the only option for me; however, now I am much more open to other career paths and sector. 
My horizons broadened thanks to the countless company presentations and career-fairs that Imperial College Business School organises, which gave me new insights into industries I never considered. Five years from now you could find me anywhere, both location and career-wise.

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