Finance MSc programmes – An insight into the Guest Speaker Series
The ‘Guest Speaker Series’ is a key feature of many of our Master’s programmes at Cranfield School of Management. Successful practitioners, many of who are Cranfield alumni, are invited to speak to our students about their role and the industry sector they work in, and also to provide any career advice they may have. This provides an invaluable opportunity for students to further their understanding of the industry, to network with like-minded professionals, and to help develop a focussed career plan.
We spoke to students and staff from our Finance MSc courses to provide an insight into their Guest Speaker Series. We asked them to explain the benefits to them and their learning experience. They focussed on a guest lecture by Cranfield alumnus, Manish Singh, Chief Investment Officer for Crossbridge Capital Group.
“In the speaker series, we try to bring all kinds of different experiences and I think [for students] it is fundamental to see different perspectives and learn from other experiences.”
Nemanja Radic, Course Director of the MSc Finance programmes
“The first thing that inspired me was learning that he also did the same master’s programme that I’m in, knowing that I can achieve similar things to him.“
Timothy Mkandawire, Finance and Management MSc student
Nemanja, Course Director of the MSc Finance programmes, highlighted, “It is great to have any speaker, but in particular Manish, because Manish Singh is one of our first alumni in the first iteration of the programme, and you see how much he has progressed since graduating. Also, Manish can give students very reliable information regarding the macro-perspective on investing from his point of view as Chief Investment Officer in one of the largest companies in the UK.”
Ivano Maino, a Finance and Management MSc student explained, “From Manish’s talk, we learned a lot about what comes after university. There are some things that university teaches you, and that’s fine, but some things you actually learn from experience in the working environment, and that is made clear from these speaking sessions.”
During a conversation with Manish after his talk, he reflected on the importance of talking to the next generation of students, and also on his memories of his time at Cranfield.
“This evening I spoke to the students about quantitative easing, its impact on inflation, Central Bank policies, growth equities and what basically the future holds for investing. I was in the first cohort of the Finance and Management MSc at Cranfield School of Management [in 2004]. I’m grateful for what the school has done for me. I know how important it is to tell the younger generation what they can do and share with them what I have learned from my own experience, which will to help them in their careers.”
Manish has over eight years investment banking and financial markets experience, most recently at Société Generale Private Banking Hambros Bank as Investment Director. He has also worked as head of the structured product solutions team at SGPB Hambros, and before that at UBS Investment Bank.
“It’s very beneficial to hear from Cranfield alumni. We can gain so much insight from them, from the real world of [financial] industry.”
Putu Agni Parahita, Finance and Management MSc student
Timothy Mkandawire, a Finance and Management MSc student said, “The main thing that I picked up from Manish was just the vast experience that he’s had working in finance, and understanding how macro-economics and finance link together so that you can make great decisions.”
Christoforus Enrico Andriawan, an Investment Management MSc student pointed out, “The guest speaker series was really good for me, because as a finance student we learn a lot from a person like Manish. What I learnt is how to actually implement all the theory that you learn in the classroom to make practical decisions. It is good to learn from other people’s experience, especially in finance. So I think this is really beneficial for students; not only learning from the textbook but also learning from the experts such as alumni.”
The Speaker Series is a great asset to our master’s courses and really enhances the learning experience for our students. These sessions with industry experts are something that students and staff look forward to in the year. They provide the essential knowledge needed to pursue a career in that area. It is a great way for current students to meet and hear from alumni and professionals, so it is something we plan to continue for years to come. Through this, the aspiration is that students can take what they have learnt into practice and maybe return to the speaker series in future years, as a guest this time, to inspire the next generation.
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