Opportunities In and Out of the Classroom-Alex

Alex Xu
Master of Science in Quantitative Finance

Hello, my name is Alex Xu, a first-year student in the Master of Quantitative Finance program at the  Smith School. I’m from China and I have been at  UMD for about 2 months. Although it is not a very long time, there are a ton of experiences and feelings I want to share with you.

There are plenty of events and activities at UMD. The most recent event I attend is Maryland Lead Program. I got a sponsorship from Amy Swann, who is the Director of Specialty Masters programs in the Masters Programs Office, to attend this 2-day camp. It was a great experience. I stayed at YMCA Camp Letts, which is located nearby a harbor. Surrounded by the peaceful sea, I felt relaxed and happy. It is really a good program with a beautiful view, and I learned about leadership. During camping, we did a lot of group tasks and discussions to learn and understand more about leadership; I also learned about my conflict style which I never heard about before. I made many good friends, and in the evenings, we stayed in a cozy cabin and played games together.

I also enjoy my courses in the Master of Quantitative Finance program. Professors are super nice and willing to answer your questions no matter how stupid might sound like. Thus, I won’t feel ashamed if I couldn’t understand some of the materials and need extra help. My favorite course so far is Financial Econometrics, which is taught by Professor Rossi. I really enjoy the lectures he gave, which talk about data processing in finance and how to use R to code. It’s a great help for our future careers in finance.

Apart from events and courses, there are many other things you can enjoy in UMD. It is November now and the campus has become colorful. Some leaves turned to yellow and red and some stayed green. It’s delightful to wander around the campus, enjoying a  cool breeze and watching beautiful trees.

To sum up my experience so far, you will never get bored studying and living here in College Park!

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