BA/MAief at Brandeis
Brandeis University's Lemberg Master of Arts in International Economics and Finance is a two-year graduate program of the International Business School.
This program prepares students for careers in international finance, business, policymaking, and other fields that require strong analytical skills in international economics. Qualified Wellesley undergraduates who wish to earn the MAief may pursue a special track beginning in the senior undergraduate year that will allow for completion of the MAief with one year of post-BA study. This program is the BA/MAief program.
Wellesley undergraduates enter the program in their senior year, take two courses each semester at Brandeis and the rest at Wellesley. They then enroll at Brandeis for one additional year of full-time graduate study leading to the MAief. BA/MAief candidates are required to spend five years as full-time students.
A Wellesley student can choose Wellesley courses that give credit toward the MAief as well as the BA. She can also choose Brandeis courses that will give credit toward the BA as well as the MAief. In general, a student should have completed eight units for the MAief degree by the time of her graduation from Wellesley. Students planning to complete their Wellesley degree in the fall semester of their senior year should expect to remain in the MAief Program for an additional three semesters. Because many of the MAief prerequisites and requirements are satisfied with core courses required of economics majors and with upper-level economics courses, Wellesley students who enter the program will ordinarily be economics majors.
One semester in the program may be spent at an affiliated foreign university, typically in the fall of the graduate year. IBS has affiliations with leading universities around the world, including France, Denmark, Holland, Italy, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Brazil, Israel, Korea, Japan, China, and Singapore. (Please note: Students who study abroad during their undergraduate years are not exempt from the BA/MAief international experience requirement without IBS approval.)
The prerequisites for this program include introductory micro and macroeconomics, statistics and intermediate microeconomics.
A Wellesley College undergraduate will have fulfilled these prerequisites with our ECON 101 and ECON 102, ECON 103, and ECON 201.
The requirements for the MAief degree include a total of 16 courses: three courses in international economics, two courses in international finance, one course in accounting, one course in quantitative techniques, and nine electives. A Wellesley College student can use courses taken at Wellesley to satisfy many of the requirements, and can elect to do extra coursework in these areas. The specific course requirements and the corresponding Wellesley courses are as follows.
Global Economic Environment (ECON 201a): Wellesley students are not exempt from taking this course.
International Macroeconomics (ECON 202a): A Wellesley student can satisfy this requirement by taking our ECON 313: International Macroeconomics.
International Trade Policy (ECON 260a): A Wellesley student can fulfill this requirement by taking our ECON 314: International Trade.
Financial Theory (FIN 201a): A student can fulfill this requirement by taking Wellesley's ECON 323: Finance Theory or MIT's course 15.401, Finance Theory I.
International Corporate Finance (FIN 202a): This course should be taken at Brandeis, if possible during the spring of the first year.
Accounting and Financial Analysis (FIN 212a): A Wellesley student who has already taken accounting at Babson or the Sloan School at MIT is exempted from the requirement of taking this course but must take another one in its place.
The quantitative techniques requirement is two of the following half-semester (f) courses: Information Management (BUS 211f), Financial Modeling I (FIN 217f), Financial Modeling II (FIN 218f), Introduction to Econometrics (ECON 211f), Applications of Econometrics (ECON 212f). A Wellesley student fulfills this requirement with our ECON 203: Econometrics.
A Wellesley student can meet the nine-elective requirement in part by choosing upper-level (300-level) economics courses at Wellesley. Of the courses taken at Brandeis, many (but not all) will receive Wellesley College credit; a student must secure approval from the Director of the MAief Program before signing up for any courses at Brandeis. (Note that no courses in Brandeis' International Business “BUS" category will receive credit toward the Wellesley degree.)
Foreign Language Requirement
The Wellesley language requirement satisfies this.
A semester of international study at a partner university or working/living abroad for a substantial length of time will satisfy this requirement.
Refer to the Brandeis International Business School website to see a typical path through the MAief program, a list of IBS courses, and other information.
The Lemberg MAief Program has traditionally prepared students for careers in international finance, economics, consulting, and business. It is especially relevant for positions that require the application of those disciplines within the international marketplace.
Graduates of the MAief program have accepted permanent positions with firms such as AT&T, Andersen Consulting, BankBoston, Bankers Trust Company, Chase Manhattan, Citicorp, Fidelity Investments, Goldman Sachs, International Data Group, KPMG Peat Marwick, Lazard Freres, McKinsey & Co., Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, PricewaterhouseCoopers, the World Bank, and WorldStreet Corporation. Several graduates are employed by the central banks and finance ministries of the United States and other countries.
Expenses for tuition and other charges in your graduate year of the MAief Program will be similar to amounts for your final year of undergraduate study (but Brandeis tuition rates apply).There are no additional charges for Brandeis courses taken as a Wellesley senior. At the time of admission to the Lemberg MAief program, you will receive a scholarship agreement, which will indicate your award for the graduate year at Brandeis.
Please be aware that financial aid for the graduate year of study is traditionally less generous than undergraduate financial aid. Each student will be responsible for a significant portion of tuition in addition to all living expenses. If you are concerned about funding, you should speak with the IBS Admissions Office before submitting your application.
U.S. students should expect to apply for federal loans through the Stafford program and through private loan agencies. International students may be eligible for a Brandeis loan. The three main sources of financial assistance available at the graduate level are: government loans and grants (federal and state), IBS institutional grants, and private foundations/corporations. You should explore all these sources of funding. Graduate support is based on merit, need, and the availability of funds.
U.S. students wishing to apply for federal financial assistance must complete a FAFSA form. The Office of Financial Aid also requires that you submit a signed copy of your parents' income tax return for the prior year. Parental information is required even if you meet the federal definition of independence.
All financial aid questions, particularly those about financing the fifth year should be directed to the Office of Admission: 781-736-2252 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Many students choose to study abroad to meet the International Experience requirement. It is coordinated through exchange agreements with affiliated foreign universities and it is financed differently from the usual undergraduate semester abroad. Lemberg students who study under the auspices of the program at one of the affiliated foreign universities continue to pay Brandeis tuition. Students also pay for their living expenses abroad. Lemberg students receive a travel grant to help defray the cost of airfare to their destination and remain eligible for whatever financial aid they receive from IBS.
Interested students should consult the website of the Brandeis program and consult with the chair of the economics department. A student must apply both to Wellesley's Department of Economics and to the IBS at Brandeis. The Wellesley application is available for download here, it is due at the beginning of the spring semester of junior year. The Brandeis application is available for download here. You must submit a completed application, official undergraduate transcript, a composite letter of recommendation from the Wellesley economics department, essays, and a resume no later than March 15. The GRE is not required. An interview is required of all applicants. Admission decisions will be announced in mid-April.
All students interested in the five-year BA/MAief program are urged to carefully weigh its benefits and disadvantages before applying. Admissions decisions are made carefully and with the assumption that all students will complete the Lemberg program.
To learn more about the program, take the following steps.
- Read the Brandeis program Handbook.
- Attend an information session held at Wellesley or at IBS in the Sachar International Center at Brandeis.
- Discuss the program with a Wellesley advisor (Professor Susan Skeath), an IBS admission counselor, or with the director of the Lemberg MAief Program, Tren Dolbear.
- Talk with a current student to get a student's perspective on the program. Contact the Office of Admission if you would like to get in touch with a current student or alum.
- Visit program courses or seminars. Check the IBS website for upcoming events.