From Lagos to London to NYC


As soon as he completed his undergraduate degree in engineering at the University of Lagos, Obinna Eke, MFE class of 2011, knew he wanted to go back to graduate school. He gained two years of work experience at one of the foremost investment banks in the world, before deciding to pursue his postgraduate degree at Berkeley, in the MFE program.Eke HS.jpg

During the program, Obinna found its most valuable aspect to be the optimal mix of subject matter, breadth, and industry relevance packed into a 12-month program. Through diverse classes of fixed income, econometrics, machine learning and computational finance, to the large number of electives and the various speakers and industry lecturers, the Berkeley MFE gives its students comprehensive training in finance and financial intuition.

“With all the new concepts and projects I was tackling, The Berkeley MFE program was a portfolio of achievements for me,” said Obinna.

Prior to joining the MFE Program, Obinna worked in the Equity Derivatives Group for an investment bank in London. Currently, he is working in the structured credit group in a New York based investment bank, the same firm where he completed his internship during the program. He went back to the company in the spring of 2011 to begin working full-time.

“I am very passionate about the role that modern finance and capital markets can play in lifting people out of poverty. The Berkeley MFE Program helped broaden my skillset, giving me confidence in my ability to take on key roles in this regard.”

According to Obinna the MFE program was extremely market-focused, constantly stressing market-relevance, intuition, and applicability as a necessary complement to theory. The program did a great job in bridging the gap between theory and practice.

“My year at Haas was incredibly rewarding. Since graduation, I have made an effort to reconnect with the program – peers, professors, MFE staff - as often as possible, and each year, I am excited at the prospect of finding new and similar-minded individuals to work with during the internship and on a full-time basis.”

Obinna says he went into the program with the false preconception that an MFE program was only suited for those interested in highly quantitative finance roles. However, the Berkeley MFE program reshaped that view treating an MFE degree as a toolset which can be applied to tackle simple or complicated financial problems. Obinna believes this toolset is quickly becoming a requirement to be able to compete favourably and navigate seamlessly through today's increasingly digitized markets.

“The Berkeley MFE Program is the single most important and highest yielding investment in my career to date.” -- Obinna Eke, MFE Class of 2011

Learn more about the Berkeley MFE Program and how we can help you launch your career by going to our website or by joining an information session.

About The Author

As Assistant Dean and Executive Director of the Berkeley MFE Program, my role-among other things-is to develop and maintain contacts with firms to find opportunities for the students and place them in outstanding internships and full-time positions.