How can an accounting or finance master’s boost your career?
Promoted by Lancaster University

How can an accounting or finance master’s boost your career?

A master’s degree in accounting or finance from Lancaster University Management School (LUMS) can be the key ingredient to elevate your career prospects. Dr Mohamed Ghaly, Senior Lecturer in finance, and programme director of the MSc Finance and MSc Accounting and Financial Management programmes at Lancaster, notes that both qualifications open the door to various industries. Graduates have landed roles including financial analysts, investment managers, treasury managers, or consultants.

“Companies that have recruited our master’s graduates in recent years include Bacon & Woodrow, Bank of America, Bank of China, Barclays Capital, BNP Paribas, China Asset Management, Citi, Deloitte, Deutsche Bank, EY, Goldman Sachs, Grant Thornton, HSBC, JPMorgan Chase, KPMG, Lazard, Mazars, PwC, Standard Chartered and UBS,” he says.

What makes LUMS graduates so sought after by employers is their up-to-date knowledge and skills. All Lancaster’s programme are updated constantly, matching the evolving needs of the accounting and finance industries. The core modules include training in financial programming languages, such as VBA, R, MATLAB, and Python, while hands-on experience with financial data platforms like Thomson EIKON, FactSet and Bloomberg gives you an edge when entering the job market.

“Students learn about contemporary topics in accounting and finance, such as Environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) investing, climate finance, and sustainability reporting,” adds Dr Ghaly. “They also get exposed to the latest empirical techniques for analysing financial data like machine learning and textual analysis.”

 Lancaster University Management School

Source: Lancaster University Management School

LUMS offers four main accounting and finance master’s programmes. The Accounting and Financial Management MSc provides academic training at the frontier of accounting and financial management knowledge, which is ideal for building a career in accountancy, investment banking, financial analysis, or corporate finance.

“Students learn about principles of financial reporting and financial management and get the chance to study advanced modules such as financial statement analysis, advanced management accounting, and financial reporting for complex entities,” says Dr Ghaly.

The Finance MSc is a 12-month programme where you will learn how to collect, analyse, and interpret financial data. You will also have a chance to explore advanced modules that cover contemporary topics in finance, such as ESG investing and machine learning. The Financial Management MSc will give you insights into corporate finance, financial markets, financial reporting, AI and cyber security, sustainability, and climate finance. This programme includes job market training, and you will acquire skills in market simulation.

Designed to give you advanced technical knowledge and skills to take on investment management and financial analysis roles, the Investment Management and Financial Analysis MSc is rigorous. “The programme offers modules that are academically more advanced and, at the same time, more practice-oriented than those offered by a typical UK master’s programme in finance,” says Dr Ghaly. “In addition, students receive training from Fitch Learning’s expert tutors to prepare them for the CFA Level I and II professional qualifications.”

Lancaster University Management School

Source: Lancaster University Management School

No matter which master’s you choose, graduates have numerous advantages with a LUMS degree. You can achieve an automatic exemption from most Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) Fundamental Level papers and 11 exemptions from the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants’ (CIMA) Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) qualification. This makes you more competitive in the job market for accountancy jobs.

While many universities are affiliated with the CFA Institute, LUMS is one of a handful that offers training for the CFA qualification. “By joining our programmes, students aiming for a career in financial analysis or investment banking can benefit from hands-on training for the CFA Level I and II exams,” says Dr Ghaly. “Students sit the CFA exams while on the programme, and by the time they graduate, many of them go to the job market having acquired both a master’s degree and the CFA professional qualification, which makes them much more competitive.”

LUMS has partnered with financial markets specialists who have worked for several leading investment banks and financial technology institutions. These include career coaches specialising in helping students become aware of and seize available opportunities. Paul McCormick, Financial Careers Coach, has spent five years at Lancaster University, plus 25 years in investment banking. “We uniquely offer mock assessment centres, virtual or physical visits to financial employers like investment banks, as well as show unique opportunities from our ever-growing financial alumni,” he says.

You can benefit from individual attention to get personalised insight into your options and opportunities. The careers coach has a wealth of experience from which you can learn. “All students are eligible for one-to-one financial career appointments with me,” adds Paul. “A good starting point is the  ‘Financial Career Insight Series’ of documents, which covers everything from CVs, cover letters and interviews to providing insight on an exciting range of financial sectors and employers that students do not yet know about. There are numerous financial events and workshops for postgraduate students as soon as they arrive at Lancaster.”

Learn more about Lancaster University Management School.

Follow Lancaster University Management School on Facebook, X, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok and YouTube.