Written by: Giuliana Ciccone Lara
I have dreamt about coming to Norway for some years. While it was not possible for my bachelor, I was able to make it as an exchange student—interestingly, there was only one spot for BI in the whole university. I would say that I immediately fell in love with the university spirit and culture. I spent a few months as an exchange student, but it was not enough so I had to come back. However, this time as a master student. I chose BI for my master’s due to its academic reputation and the connections it has with my bachelor’s university. Only a few universities in the world bear a triple-crown accreditation, a tailored program that covers CFA Institute’s standards, and the on-campus resources are unique, which I will discuss later on this post.
In a nutshell life as a student at Master of Science in Finance is exciting, frustrating, and rewarding. Every day you get exposed to new knowledge, and you must be aware to continuously connect the dots. As a master student, the knowledge does not expand as wide-way as during the bachelor, but rather it becomes deeper and solid. Sometimes it might feel like too much to handle, but you will get to develop your organization and prioritization skills. My best advice is to learn to forecast your workload but realistically - factor all events that might happen throughout the day. As a master student, we have our own study area. There you will find all the people from the class studying and sharing. You will be surprised how crowded it can get even during low-workload periods. Most of the teachers will upload the class material before class, so I spend some time before heading home and the end of the day taking a look at what will be discussed in class so I can make sure to clarify my doubts with teachers during the session.
One of the things I like the most about BI is BISO, which is the student organisation at BI. I am proud to be part of the board of BISO Invest, one of many student societies, which has the responsibility to manage the liquid assets of the whole student organisation. Here I get to apply all the things I learn in the classrooms and understand how theoretical knowledge fuses with practical capabilities. On a daily basis, I monitor the market and discuss with the risk management team about the market condition and possible tactical trades. At BI, we are very lucky to have a dedicated room filled with several Bloomberg Terminals, which provides you with a unique competitive edge. It is very common to find other members hanging out and exploring financial markets while discussing the markets. Another great thing about being part of the student organisation is the networking opportunities and meeting like-minded peers. Frequently, I spend hours discussing and exchanging opinions with other BISO Invest members after we finish our weekly meetings.
Going North was definitely the right decision, every day is a challenge, but you will realize that you can achieve more than you think. Norway and BI will offer you tons of opportunities to make your experience exceptional. And whenever it gets too hard, the friends you make will make it better.