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Strathclyde Business School

The building blocks to your future career: MSc Investment and Finance

By Stuart Gillies - Posted on 7 June 2018

Stuart Gillies is currently undertaking the MSc in Investment and Fiance. Here he talks about his experiences of the programme and how it has given him the building blocks for employment or future studies.

Prior to undertaking the MSc Investment and Finance, I worked for a year at HSBC in Edinburgh, and before that I had completed my undergraduate degree in Finance, Investment and Risk from Glasgow Caledonian University.

I was encouraged to pursue a Masters degree in order to develop the knowledge I had gained during my undergraduate degree through rigorous application and critical evaluation of financial theories and techniques. The MSc Investment and Finance at Strathclyde provided a perfect platform for this to be achieved. I was attracted to Strathclyde due to the internationally renowned triple accredited Business School and, in particular, the continually highly ranked Department of Accounting and Finance.

The programme has surpassed my expectations in terms of creating a learning environment that fosters intellectual curiosity in the subject of investment and finance. The course has introduced us to a number of the tools which are used by investment professionals, developing the underlying theory while also teaching us how to apply these in a real world setting through the department’s Bloomberg Terminals. The MSc Investment and Finance has developed both the technical skills and the research capability which provides the perfect building blocks for pursuing employment or further study.

One of the standout elements of the course has been the significant focus on the practical application of the financial theory which you are introduced to throughout the year. Examples of this have included completing an in-depth financial analysis of a listed company and also creating and testing optimal investment portfolios using real world data. The knowledge and experienced gained from these projects has been enhanced by the fact they were completed in group environments, with fellow students from a wide range of backgrounds. This stimulated deeper learning and understanding as I was exposed to different viewpoints that I would not have considered individually.

Throughout the year there have been a number of interesting guest lecturers speaking at the business school, including - to name a few - a Managing Director from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and a member of the Monetary Policy Committee. In addition to this, during a class on Derivatives and Treasury Management we were given the chance to enter a trading competition with the best performers being offered an interview at a proprietary trading firm in the UK.

The diversity of the students on the course, in terms of both academic backgrounds and nationalities, has been one of the most positive factors of studying at Strathclyde. This diversity of opinion facilitates effective and thought-provoking discussions during classes which has enhanced the learning experience. This wide range of opinions has also translated well into group assignments, as I have found the different perspectives brought together has enhanced the performance and experience of working in a group environment. This mix of nationalities and backgrounds extends to the teaching staff on the programme, as the wide range of specialisations within the faculty has ensured that we received first class guidance on all the topics we have encountered.

The University has gone to great lengths to encourage networking and the formation of an effective social environment among students. This has included social events among classmates and also the encouragement to engage in a number of societies on campus.

Following completion of the MSc Investment and Finance, I aim to use the knowledge and skills I have gained during this year to pursue a career in the Investment Management industry.

I would encourage prospective students to take advantage of the international community enrolled on the course by forming connections with as many people as possible. I have found that discussing the syllabus with fellow students has enabled me to achieve a more robust understanding of the content, while thinking about the issues in a more critical and effective manner. Additionally, I would encourage students to take full advantage of the resources available to them. This includes a wide range of financial databases, which provide the data for you to apply and test the financial theory you are introduced to on the course.

Contact details

 Undergraduate admissions
 +44 (0)141 548 4114

 Postgraduate admissions
 +44(0)141 553 6118 / 6119


Strathclyde Business School
University of Strathclyde
199 Cathedral Street
G4 0QU

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