Does CFA Help In MBA Application? [draft]


It’s a bit late in the game, but I still thought about the possibility of going for an MBA program.

I wonder: is the CFA designation / knowledge / experience helpful in the application?

CFA Level 1 = Finance Undergraduate Degree

Now that I have officially passed Level 1, I can assume that my finance knowledge is somewhat equivalent to those with a finance undergrad degree.

This in itself may not help in the MBA program, as the top ones are looking for leadership and passion in some amazingly cool stuff instead of something as bland as a finance degree.

Does it Help after Passing Level 2?

Does passing Level 2 make you stand out above other B-school candidates? Maybe, but probably not. Clearing Level 2 does show that you have some brains, because it is quite a bit harder than Level 1. But there are a lot of people that pass Level 2 and never finish Level 3.

It’s kind of a neither here or there situation…

MBA Program is Not Really for Academics

I long believe that getting an MBA from a local state school (either before or after CFA) isn’t worth my time and money. If I were to go, I would shoot for the top MBA programs.

I also understand that the most value add from a (top) MBA program is the networking and the opportunity to break into really though industries such as investment banking and big buyside firms.

The idea of knowing future business leaders is cool, but MBA isn’t the only way to do it. As for breaking into i-banks… it’s not my cup of tea.

So why am I doing this?

The more I think about it, the less I believe MBA adds value to me at this stage.

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Sam H

I was originally from Illinois, now working in New York City as a financial analyst. I am aiming to take (and pass!) the CFA Level 1 exam in June.

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