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February 13, 2024

Graduates Land Top Financial Tech Jobs Through a Unique Program at the University of Delaware

(Syda Productions/Shutterstock)

The rise of ChatGPT and other GenAI platforms has caused a major disruption in the education sector. While GenAI technology offers incredible promise for research and development, there are some concerns about the use of GenAI by students to complete their projects and homework.

While several universities continue to grapple with such issues and looking for new ways to restrict AI, the University of Delaware (UD) has focused on enabling its students to become part of the AI revolution. 

UD offers a unique program that helps graduates land top financial technical jobs. The program is called the Financial Services Analytics (FSAN) (Ph.D.) program. While the GenAI boom is only recent, UD has been offering this program since 2014. “As far as I know, there’s no (other) such a program at the Ph.D. level,” said Bintong Chen, director of FSAN. 

According to an article published by UDaily, the University’s official newspaper, FSAN offers students the ideal learning ground by combining different fields of study with real-world corporation experience through a partnership with JPMorgan Chase,  the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, and the College of Engineering.  The partnership offers students access to top-notch facilities and financial support, including tuition and a competitive stipend. 

The FSAN website states that the curriculum of the program is designed to enable students to develop a deep understanding of the “fundamental data science theories and models, and creating data-driven decision-making tools applicable to the financial services industry and other technology industries.”

The FSAN program is essential an interdisciplinary STEM-designated program. The admitted students come from various academic backgrounds including computer science, statistics, maths, business, and engineering. As students are exposed to both theory and practical applications of technology, they learn how data is used in the financial services industry and related fields.   

(Matej Kastelic/Shutterstock)

Several studies have highlighted that the AI skills shortage is one of the primary hurdles to the progress of AI. However, students of the FSAN program graduate with a solid understanding of machine learning, artificial intelligence, and large language models (LLMs). This means FSAN graduates are better prepared for financial technology jobs compared to graduates of several other top universities that don’t offer such programs. 

The program also offers internship opportunities so that when the students graduate they have real-world experience under their belt. Some of UD’s internship partners include JP Morgan Chase, Barclays, Amazon, HP, Sallie Mae, and LinkedIn. 

“UD was able to merge finance, data mining, statistics, and other areas to create the FSAN program. This is also reflected in the diversity of the students. We come from different fields, and it is wonderful how we are able to complement each other in so many different ways.” – FSAN student Leonardo De La Rosa Angarita. 

The highly competitive FSAN programs only accepts a limited number of students every year. As GenAI makes further inroads into the corporate world, the demand for AI skills will only continue to grow. Other top universities need to follow UD’s model and introduce programs that can better equip graduates to handle the demands of the rapidly evolving workforce. 

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