Pre-Program Boot Camp
In order to help incoming MS students reach their maximum potential, the FRE department provides a comprehensive two-part pre-program boot camp every summer. The boot camp consists of an optional six-week online class in June and July, and a mandatory two-week intensive program in person in August. Covered topics include Capital Markets, Advanced Calculus, Linear Algebra, Python Programming, Probability, Statistics & Risk Management.
The boot camp’s purpose is to prepare incoming students for the interview process that will begin soon after the start of the Fall semester. The top financial firms recruit in October for quantitative internships beginning in June of the following year. The boot camp evaluates students on a pass/fail basis, but the perspective gained is invaluable for gaining an overall understanding of firms' expectations of job candidates coming from an engineering school. The types of questions asked by interviewers are broad, ranging from mathematical brain teasers to technical programming questions involving machine learning and artificial intelligence. Candidates may also be asked to take written exams with questions on stochastic calculus, Black-Scholes theory, or Python coding. There is a lot to know, and few people (if anyone) have mastered it all, but attending the boot camp is the fastest way to become familiar with the landscape of topics important to the modern financial services industry.