February 8, 2021
Mingyue Wang grew up in Hangzhou, China. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Fordham University. This is her second quarter as a student in the Financial Mathematics master’s program. She is currently taking Portfolio Theory & Risk Management, Numerical Methods of Option Pricing and Hedging, Stochastic Calculus, and Machine Learning in Finance. She also participated in the CME Group University Trading Challenge in 2020 and The International Association for Quantitative Finance (IAQF) Annual Academic Competition in 2021, where she had the opportunity to experience the excitement, energy, and decision-making environment of real-time trading as well as discuss cutting-edge and pivotal issues in the finance field. We spoke to her about her experiences below.
Why did you choose the University of Chicago?
When I was applying for a master’s program, the University of Chicago was an obvious first choice. UChicago has a high academic reputation and well-designed curriculum. I tend to challenge myself and the theoretical approach of learning at UChicago has been just what I was looking for. Besides, stepping on UChicago’s campus and being surrounded by its architectural beauty is always a experience. In addition, UChicago has a competitive advantage for the job market. Chicago is a trading hub and there are countless prop trading and market making firms here, and recruiters like to interview students from UChicago.
What is something you are proud of accomplishing at UChicago?
The project for Computing for Finance in Python from the last quarter was about building an order book matching engine, which matches up the bids and offers to complete trades. It offers me the technical foundation of quantitative trading. In addition, with the help of faculty members, the FinMath Career Development Office, and the alumni network, I landed a summer internship at a boutique bank in New York.
What’s something you love to do outside of the classroom and lab?
I am a huge fan of jazz (especially 1950s) and metal music. I love tennis, swimming, scuba, kickboxing, playing poker, and have a weird obsession with collecting CDs and vinyl records. Because of the COVID pandemic, I also grew a strong interest in cooking. Posting the dishes I made on my food blog became a daily routine.
What are your plans post-UChicago?
After the FinMath program, I will end up in industry, pursuing a quantitative trading or quantitative research position in investment bank or hedge fund.
What support have you received at the UChicago that was particularly valuable to you?
All the faculty members are willing to help, not only with the class but also with preparing for going into the industry. Their main goal is your learning. The Bloomberg Terminal in the lab is very accessible. Also, the numerous behavioral/technical interview labs and networking events hosted by the FinMath Career Development Office are a huge plus, giving me the opportunity to be well-prepared for the job market.
If you were speaking to someone who wants to learn about UChicago, what would you tell them?
Be prepared for the intensive workload of the first quarter. It is tough because you need to actively seek an internship opportunity while taking full-credit courses, but it is certainly very rewarding from my perspective. And various kinds of courses offered by FinMath allow students to sample different fields within quantitative finance to help explore your passion. Building connections with classmates became difficult during this year due to the pandemic but being active and sharing information with each other is always helpful.