Master of Science in Finance (MSF)

Master of Science in Finance (MSF)

The financial industry has become increasingly complex in its operations and regulatory requirements. While a BBA in finance represents a useful entry-level degree for many positions in the field, the complexity of contemporary financial and risk management requires systemic and in-depth training on financial theory and practice beyond what is possible within the undergraduate study.

The Master of Science in Finance (MSF) is a full-time, one-year, non-thesis, finance graduate degree program that requires 30 credits to complete. The program will provide students in-depth knowledge in the principles and practices of finance and broaden their opportunities to work in finance-related careers, such as commercial banking, investment management, wealth management, financial planning, risk management and insurance, and real estate, etc.

Upon completion of the MSF program, graduates will be able to achieve the following outcomes:

  • Students will be able to learn advanced theories and best practices in the financial industry.
  • Students will learn comprehensive knowledge necessary for obtaining the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst®), the FRM (Financial Risk ManagerTM), the CFP (Certified Financial Planner®), and/or the ASA (Associate of the Society of Actuaries) certifications.
  • Students will master in-depth knowledge for conducting practical research in the areas of equity valuation, portfolio management, and risk management and insurance.
  • Students will obtain solid foundation in financial management that will be valuable if they pursue further graduate studies such as PhD program in finance.

MSF Advantages

Higher Earning Potential

According to PayScale, one of the world’s most advanced compensation platforms, those who with a bachelor’s degree in Finance earn an average salary of $60,000, while those with a master’s degree have an average salary of $86,000 – the increase in salary is about 43% with a master’s degree.

One-Year Course of Study

The MSF program is a one-year master’s program. It also requires little or no work experience, which is great for undergraduate students.

Increasing Demand from the Finance Industry

The financial industry is one of the largest industries in the State of Hawaii and has been growing rapidly. In 2015, the employment in the sector of finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing is 46,133, accounts for 6.8% of the total employment. The trend has been increasing. Financial companies such as Bank of Hawaii, First Hawaiian Bank, American Savings Bank, are among the state’s top 25 employers.

Shidler College of Business Reputation

Shidler is the only AACSB-accredited graduate program in the state of Hawai‘i. It features a world class Finance Faculty who have expertise in all areas in corporate finance, investment management, financial planning, risk management and insurance, and real estate. Students in the MSF program will receive instructions from our faculty within small classes that optimize interaction and mutual learning.

Two Pathways for MSF

Internal 4+1 Pathway – for Finance majors in the Shidler College of Business

Shidler Finance majors will be able to apply to the MSF Program toward the end of their junior year or early in their senior year. If accepted, they will be able to take up to two 600-level and one 400-level course as an undergraduate. These courses will be allowed to count toward their undergraduate and graduate degrees. This means that during their +1 year (i.e., 5th year at UHM), they will need only 21 instead of 30 credit hours to earn the MSF degree.

External MSF pathway – for applicants other than Shidler Finance majors

Applicants who are not Shidler Finance majors will take this regular pathway for the MSF program. They will take 30 credit hours of Masters level courses. If they do not have BBAs in Finance or related areas, they will need to take additional courses in economics, accounting, and finance, in addition to the 30 graduate credit hours OR petition the Faculty Director to waive one or more of these based on taking course equivalents as part of their academic program.

Curriculum*

MSF Foundation Courses (6 credits)

  • FIN 633 Problems in Business Finance
  • FIN 634: Investment Analysis and Management

MSF Functional courses (21 credits minimum; courses can be overlapping across functional areas)

Financial Analysis and Investments

  • ACC 581: Financial Accounting 1
  • FIN 653: Portfolio Optimization
  • FIN 654: Financial Derivatives
  • FIN 655: Financial Forecasting

Banking and Insurance

  • FIN 625: International Monetary Systems and Global Financial Markets
  • FIN 639: International Banking
  • FIN 656: Insurance and Risk Management
  • FIN 660: Seminar in Finance

MSF Capstone (3 credits)

FIN 661 Consulting Practicum/Finance Internship/Other Culminating Experience

* Subject to change

Application Guidelines

For Internal 4+1 Pathway

  • GMAT or GRE is neither required nor recommended
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Completed BUS 314 with a grade of B or above
  • At least one Finance faculty member’s recommendation

For External 4+1 Pathway

  • Either in the last year of undergraduate study or have a bachelor’s degree
  • GMAT or GRE is recommended but not required
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Applicants with a non-finance related degree may be required to take additional courses in economics, accounting, and corporate finance.

Application Deadline

Internal 4+1 pathway applicants should apply in the semester before their senior year or early in their senior year as a Shidler finance major.

The deadline for scholarship consideration and international applicants is March 1st of the year before they enter into the program. The regular review deadline for all MSF applicants is May 1st.

Application Materials

  • Online Application
  • Statement of Purpose/Objectives: Please provide a brief statement about your interest in the MSF and how this degree will help you meet your future career goals
  • Two Recommendation Letters (for internal 4+1 pathway applicants, one letter should be sent from a Finance faculty member in the Shidler College of Business)
  • Official Transcript(s)
  • TOEFL or IELTS for international applicants who did not receive their degree from a country where the language of instruction during their undergraduate degree was entirely in English.

APPLY TODAY!

Contact Marc Endrigat, admissions director at endrigat@hawaii.edu or (808) 956-2911.

Tuition & Scholarship

Tuition rate for the MSF program is $887 per credit hour.

Most students should expect to take 30 credits in order to complete the program. However, some students without finance or related degrees may be required to take additional courses in economics, accounting, and corporate finance.

Faculty

The Finance faculty in the Shidler College of Business faculty is a diverse group of internationally accomplished researchers, teachers, and consultants. They play an active role in local, national, and international business communities, serving as board members, editors, speakers, and administrators to top educational business organizations.

For a list of all Finance faculty, please visit our Faculty Directory.

Career Services

The Career Services and Professional Development Office at the Shidler College of Business supports undergraduate and graduate students with their internship and career search. This office provides career-related internships to gain real world experience while earning academic credits. Through the internship program, students strengthen their employment opportunities in the marketplace after graduation and gain greater insight into the selection of a career path, and network with professionals in their chosen field.

The office also provides extensive on-campus interview programs, career fairs, and workshops. The office is dedicated to assisting students in their career growth and development, and to helping employers identify and select highly qualified candidates. A broad range of services are offered to enhance our students' employment marketability. From career search and information sources to skills development workshops, we seek to educate, train, and advise our students to ensure successful preparation for entry in the business job market, and assist students in making the right career decisions.

The office maintains a business and alumni network that provides a link between recruiters and students, to maximize the potential for successful internship and permanent job placement. For more information on the various programs, contact the Career Services and Professional Development Office at (808) 956-6972 or (808) 956-9330. Questions regarding graduate-level internships and career development should be directed to (808) 956-3122. Additional career assistance for students is available through the Manoa Career Center.

Frequently Asked Questions

I do not have an undergraduate degree in Finance. Can I apply for the MSF program?

Yes. Students with any majors who are interested in Finance can apply for the MSF program. Applicants with non-finance related degrees may need to take additional courses in economics, accounting, and corporate finance in addition to the 30 graduate credit hours, OR petition the Faculty Director to waive one or more of these based on taking course equivalents as part of their academic program.

When are applications for the MSF program due?

Internal 4+1 pathway applicants should apply in the semester before their senior year or early in their senior year as a Shidler finance major.

The deadline for scholarship consideration and international applicants is March 1st of the year before they enter into the program. The regular review deadline for all MSF applicants is May 1st.

Do you offer a part-time, weekend, evening, or distance-learning option?

The MSF is a full-time program. However, courses are usually scheduled in the evening.

Is the GMAT or GRE score required for application?

GMAT/GRE scores are recommended but not required for applicants other than Shidler Finance majors (external path applicants). GMAT/GRE scores are neither required nor recommended for Shidler Finance majors (internal 4+1 pathway applicants).

Do you prefer a GRE or a GMAT score?

The MSF Admissions Committee does not have a preference.

What are the school codes for the GMAT, GRE, and TOEFL exam?

The school code for the GMAT exam is PBQ-5926. The school code for the GRE and the TOEFL is 4867.

Do I need to take the TOEFL?

Graduates of U.S. universities and colleges are not required to take the TOEFL.

Contact

For more information about the MSF program, contact Hua Chen, PhD, MSF program faculty director at huachen@hawaii.edu.