Neuroscience PhD

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Neuroscience PhD

Postby maxhaake » Mon Jul 30, 2012 1:24 am

Dear Mark,

This is one of those "Would my CV be suitable for a quant role" posts.

I did my undergrad and masters in Physics (2.1) at Bristol and am currently doing a PhD in neuroscience at Cambridge, the PhD is 100% computational/modelling (though in the bio dept) with a focus on numerical optimization of models of neurons. I also work on a large number of collaborative open source projects in computational neuroscience in my spare time.

My question would be if my 2.1 in my undergrad and doing a PhD in computational neuroscience rather than something more traditional like physics would work against me? I'm reading a lot on mathematical finance and doing exercises as I will start looking for jobs in around one year, but I don't want to put in all the effort if it's unlikely I'd get an interview.

Many thanks in advance for your answer and thanks for the excellent website.
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Re: Neuroscience PhD

Postby mj » Mon Jul 30, 2012 3:51 am

well I've never met a neuroscience quant...

With all things it comes down to making a convincing story. If you can make
the case that you are really good at computational modelling and/or statistics
it might be doable.

A lot of people wouldn't bother to interview you, however. Definitely
try to talk up Cambridge and downplay Bristol. If you don't mention your degree
class they might not ask.

You don't have to explicitly mention your department. eg put
University of Cambridge, PhD in computational modelling of neurons, award expected in Dec 2012 or whatever.
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Re: Neuroscience PhD

Postby maxhaake » Mon Jul 30, 2012 4:24 pm

Thanks for all the tips Mark,

When it comes to it I'll focus on making a convincing story as you say. There's still time left in my PhD and its pretty flexible so I'm also planning to work on sub-projects related in principle to mathematical finance. If I learn enough I'll see if there are meaningful contributions I can make to something like quantlib. That way the story will be hopefully be convincing because it's actually true.

Thanks again for the great books and website!
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Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2012 1:10 am

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