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Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
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nzmorange Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 05:30 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:19 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 04:00 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 01:24 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  Wait a second, I thought accounting and finance were different beasts?

Accounting, I think of a nerdy guy sitting at a desk with a calculator and a spreadsheet.

Finance, I think of Wall St guy in a suit, making huge money with inside information, then charging $1000 in sushi to the company expense card.

Uh, accounting IS finance. The Wall Street investment bank-type jobs that most people think of as "finance" constitute a tiny percentage of finance jobs. At the same time, financial trading firms actually want computer science and engineering grads more than business school grads today since programming is such a huge part of that field now. Otherwise, the vast majority of corporate finance jobs require a lot of accounting skills.

Let's put it this way: accounting is to finance as coding is to tech. There might be some tech jobs out there where you don't need coding skills and there might be some finance jobs out there where you don't need accounting skills, but those are few and far between. It's not an accident that even middle tier colleges still have generally good placement for accounting majors while they're all over the map for their other business majors. You can teach finance to virtually any major fairly easily (which is how those Ivy League liberal arts grads end up getting hired by Wall Street investment banks based on prestige), but accounting skills are pretty hard to learn on the job.

Source: I was a finance major at Illinois. Unless my kids get into an Ivy-level school (where your major doesn't matter), I'd highly recommend them to major in accounting if they want to be a business major in the future (or, even better, major in computer science or engineering and get an MBA later on). It didn't ultimately end up mattering in my personal situation since I went to law school, but accounting is definitely more useful for the vast majority of students (e.g. the people that aren't going to Harvard/Wharton/Stanford).

Accounting has the highest starting salary (and probably placement) for any mainstream business major.

All that said, it's the most capped profession in that raises are disproportionally low, and the other mainstream majors tend to outpace it in the long run. In short, unless you actually really like to account, it's a terrible first major, but it's a great second major.


It's a great first major, because you can start well, and then go for your MBA if desired.

This logic doesn't work as well as you'd think.
03-17-2017 06:01 PM
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Captain Bearcat Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 04:00 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 01:24 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  Wait a second, I thought accounting and finance were different beasts?

Accounting, I think of a nerdy guy sitting at a desk with a calculator and a spreadsheet.

Finance, I think of Wall St guy in a suit, making huge money with inside information, then charging $1000 in sushi to the company expense card.

Uh, accounting IS finance. The Wall Street investment bank-type jobs that most people think of as "finance" constitute a tiny percentage of finance jobs. At the same time, financial trading firms actually want computer science and engineering grads more than business school grads today since programming is such a huge part of that field now. Otherwise, the vast majority of corporate finance jobs require a lot of accounting skills.

Let's put it this way: accounting is to finance as coding is to tech. There might be some tech jobs out there where you don't need coding skills and there might be some finance jobs out there where you don't need accounting skills, but those are few and far between. It's not an accident that even middle tier colleges still have generally good placement for accounting majors while they're all over the map for their other business majors. You can teach finance to virtually any major fairly easily (which is how those Ivy League liberal arts grads end up getting hired by Wall Street investment banks based on prestige), but accounting skills are pretty hard to learn on the job.

Source: I was a finance major at Illinois. Unless my kids get into an Ivy-level school (where your major doesn't matter), I'd highly recommend them to major in accounting if they want to be a business major in the future (or, even better, major in computer science or engineering and get an MBA later on). It didn't ultimately end up mattering in my personal situation since I went to law school, but accounting is definitely more useful for the vast majority of students (e.g. the people that aren't going to Harvard/Wharton/Stanford).

No. Accounting is one part of finance, but it's not the biggest part and it's not even the same type of accounting that accountants use. Financial accounting and non-financial accounting (i.e. accounting used by the IRS and accountants) are similar in the same way that criminal law is similar to contract law: they're in the same academic college, but training in one doesn't do anything to make you better in the other.

Accounting is backward looking. It looks at how to accurately record past transactions (i.e., audits) and is utilized to minimize taxes.

Finance is forward looking. It focuses on making smart future transactions.

There's three types of finance, and only one of them requires more than a passing understanding of non-financial accounting. Corporate finance looks at forecasting and at obtaining funds (i.e. relationships with bankers or large potential stockholders). Project finance looks at making smart investments in business assets. Investment finance (also called asset pricing) looks at making smart investments in financial assets (i.e. stocks and bonds, rather than buying a new office building or a new factory like they do in project finance).

To be a CFO, you can come from either background. But if you're a CFO who is a finance person you typically need a very strong accounting person as your number 2 (and vice-versa).

At the undergrad level, finance majors have the second best job placements outside of engineering or the hard sciences (physics, biology, chemistry). The first? Accounting. But there's a lot higher standard deviation in starting finance salaries than starting accounting salaries (i.e. top finance majors make more than top accounting majors, but bottom finance majors make a lot less than bottom accounting majors).

Source: I'm a finance professor (with a PhD), and in my past life I worked in a small enough company that we had to interact very closely with the accountants.
03-17-2017 06:03 PM
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Captain Bearcat Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 06:00 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:30 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:15 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  This ignores class sizes. Large schools that skew towards grad degrees (i.e. MBA programs) have a huge edge when looking at raw numbers.

The more students a school has, the more grads in any capacity it can expect to have moving forward. That's especially true for masters level business courses that are 1-2 years vs ~4 years for bachelor programs. Also, masters-level business degrees are required to move up in some industries, like finance, which creates a second bias.

The B1G consists of huge schools w/ more of an emphasis on masters programs than the schools in most other conferences.

Calling it the biggest is probably a more accurate title.

Not so fast.

The problem with your counter-argument is that you assume all students enrolled in MBA programs have equal potential to reach the upper echelon of executive finance, the CFO position.


But actually, there are really a finite set of such people with that potential.

And it so happens that those upper crust students are choosing Big Ten MBA programs more than any other! The numbers prove it.

1. No. I'm assuming that a 1-2 year program is shorter than a 3-5 year program. Therefore a 100 person undergrad program that lasts 3-5 years will produce fewer grads than a 100 person grad program that lasts 1-2 years.

2. False. That would be the Ivy League.

Like I said. The B1G is big.

Ivy League MBA programs are just as big (if not bigger) than Big 10 MBA programs. By far the largest 2 MBA programs in the country are at Harvard and Penn.

[Image: 2018_classizes.jpg?itok=dZsvBT1X]

At the undergrad level, Big 10 schools are much bigger. But at the grad school level, but the only reason Big 10 grad schools are bigger is because they're more comprehensive (i.e. they have programs in almost every field). For individual fields, Ivy League schools typically have more graduate students.
03-17-2017 06:11 PM
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Post: #14
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 06:00 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  1. No. I'm assuming that a 1-2 year program is shorter than a 3-5 year program. Therefore a 100 person undergrad program that lasts 3-5 years will produce fewer grads than a 100 person grad program that lasts 1-2 years.

2. False. That would be the Ivy League.

Like I said. The B1G is big.

The article does a top down analysis, which is correct.

You're doing a bottom up analysis, which is false and a straw man.


You have to start at the top, because there are only a really few people with the potential to be CFO's.
(This post was last modified: 03-17-2017 06:27 PM by MplsBison.)
03-17-2017 06:26 PM
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dbackjon Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 06:01 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:30 PM)dbackjon Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:19 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 04:00 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 01:24 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  Wait a second, I thought accounting and finance were different beasts?

Accounting, I think of a nerdy guy sitting at a desk with a calculator and a spreadsheet.

Finance, I think of Wall St guy in a suit, making huge money with inside information, then charging $1000 in sushi to the company expense card.

Uh, accounting IS finance. The Wall Street investment bank-type jobs that most people think of as "finance" constitute a tiny percentage of finance jobs. At the same time, financial trading firms actually want computer science and engineering grads more than business school grads today since programming is such a huge part of that field now. Otherwise, the vast majority of corporate finance jobs require a lot of accounting skills.

Let's put it this way: accounting is to finance as coding is to tech. There might be some tech jobs out there where you don't need coding skills and there might be some finance jobs out there where you don't need accounting skills, but those are few and far between. It's not an accident that even middle tier colleges still have generally good placement for accounting majors while they're all over the map for their other business majors. You can teach finance to virtually any major fairly easily (which is how those Ivy League liberal arts grads end up getting hired by Wall Street investment banks based on prestige), but accounting skills are pretty hard to learn on the job.

Source: I was a finance major at Illinois. Unless my kids get into an Ivy-level school (where your major doesn't matter), I'd highly recommend them to major in accounting if they want to be a business major in the future (or, even better, major in computer science or engineering and get an MBA later on). It didn't ultimately end up mattering in my personal situation since I went to law school, but accounting is definitely more useful for the vast majority of students (e.g. the people that aren't going to Harvard/Wharton/Stanford).

Accounting has the highest starting salary (and probably placement) for any mainstream business major.

All that said, it's the most capped profession in that raises are disproportionally low, and the other mainstream majors tend to outpace it in the long run. In short, unless you actually really like to account, it's a terrible first major, but it's a great second major.


It's a great first major, because you can start well, and then go for your MBA if desired.

This logic doesn't work as well as you'd think.

From my experience, and the people I hire for my F&A department, having the solid accounting background first produces better employees in both areas.

YMMV
03-17-2017 06:36 PM
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nzmorange Offline
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Post: #16
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 06:26 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 06:00 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  1. No. I'm assuming that a 1-2 year program is shorter than a 3-5 year program. Therefore a 100 person undergrad program that lasts 3-5 years will produce fewer grads than a 100 person grad program that lasts 1-2 years.

2. False. That would be the Ivy League.

Like I said. The B1G is big.

The article does a top down analysis, which is correct.

You're doing a bottom up analysis, which is false and a straw man.


You have to start at the top, because there are only a really few people with the potential to be CFO's.

Statistics disagrees.

The article is worthless because of the glaring flaw that I pointed out.

Do you honestly think that the average Big Ten school better prepares finance professionals than the average Ivy school? If your answer is yes, then I think you're clearly blinded by a bias. If your answer is no, then I'm right.

As it stands right now, the article pretty much just proves the B1G is big.
(This post was last modified: 03-17-2017 06:49 PM by nzmorange.)
03-17-2017 06:49 PM
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nzmorange Offline
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Post: #17
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
Actually, while I'm at it, using your analysis, Bison, the Big XII <or honestly, instert pretty much any large conference here> has stronger academics than Harvard because the Big XII conference produces more <insert top level people here> than Harvard.

And doubly, Dartmouth and Wake are terrible schools under your analysis.
03-17-2017 06:54 PM
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ken d Offline
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Post: #18
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 05:15 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  This ignores class sizes. Large schools that skew towards grad degrees (i.e. MBA programs) have a huge edge when looking at raw numbers.

The more students a school has, the more grads in any capacity it can expect to have moving forward. That's especially true for masters level business courses that are 1-2 years vs ~4 years for bachelor programs. Also, masters-level business degrees are required to move up in some industries, like finance, which creates a second bias.

The B1G consists of huge schools w/ more of an emphasis on masters programs than the schools in most other conferences.

Calling it the biggest is probably a more accurate title.

You are right. There is nothing in either the excerpt quoted here or in the original article linked that makes any kind of value judgment about quality of these programs. All it does is count how many CFO's went to schools that happen to be linked together in an athletic conference. It doesn't even normalize for differences in the number of schools per conference.

The article is useless as a tool for anything except stirring the passions of sports fans and providing them with fodder for bragging about their favorite conference.
03-17-2017 07:49 PM
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Post: #19
RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 07:49 PM)ken d Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 05:15 PM)nzmorange Wrote:  This ignores class sizes. Large schools that skew towards grad degrees (i.e. MBA programs) have a huge edge when looking at raw numbers.

The more students a school has, the more grads in any capacity it can expect to have moving forward. That's especially true for masters level business courses that are 1-2 years vs ~4 years for bachelor programs. Also, masters-level business degrees are required to move up in some industries, like finance, which creates a second bias.

The B1G consists of huge schools w/ more of an emphasis on masters programs than the schools in most other conferences.

Calling it the biggest is probably a more accurate title.

You are right. There is nothing in either the excerpt quoted here or in the original article linked that makes any kind of value judgment about quality of these programs. All it does is count how many CFO's went to schools that happen to be linked together in an athletic conference. It doesn't even normalize for differences in the number of schools per conference.

The article is useless as a tool for anything except stirring the passions of sports fans and providing them with fodder for bragging about their favorite conference.

Its an interesting article on the people at the top from various schools. Clearly, the B1G produces a lot of CFOs for big companies.

Almost all the schools have very good MBA programs. And for whatever reason, there are a lot of strong accounting programs in the Midwest. Even some of the MAC schools have highly ranked accounting programs, Miami, Northern Illinois, Central Michigan.
03-17-2017 07:59 PM
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RE: Best conference-Big 10 according to JofA
(03-17-2017 06:03 PM)Captain Bearcat Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 04:00 PM)Frank the Tank Wrote:  
(03-17-2017 01:24 PM)MplsBison Wrote:  Wait a second, I thought accounting and finance were different beasts?

Accounting, I think of a nerdy guy sitting at a desk with a calculator and a spreadsheet.

Finance, I think of Wall St guy in a suit, making huge money with inside information, then charging $1000 in sushi to the company expense card.

Uh, accounting IS finance. The Wall Street investment bank-type jobs that most people think of as "finance" constitute a tiny percentage of finance jobs. At the same time, financial trading firms actually want computer science and engineering grads more than business school grads today since programming is such a huge part of that field now. Otherwise, the vast majority of corporate finance jobs require a lot of accounting skills.

Let's put it this way: accounting is to finance as coding is to tech. There might be some tech jobs out there where you don't need coding skills and there might be some finance jobs out there where you don't need accounting skills, but those are few and far between. It's not an accident that even middle tier colleges still have generally good placement for accounting majors while they're all over the map for their other business majors. You can teach finance to virtually any major fairly easily (which is how those Ivy League liberal arts grads end up getting hired by Wall Street investment banks based on prestige), but accounting skills are pretty hard to learn on the job.

Source: I was a finance major at Illinois. Unless my kids get into an Ivy-level school (where your major doesn't matter), I'd highly recommend them to major in accounting if they want to be a business major in the future (or, even better, major in computer science or engineering and get an MBA later on). It didn't ultimately end up mattering in my personal situation since I went to law school, but accounting is definitely more useful for the vast majority of students (e.g. the people that aren't going to Harvard/Wharton/Stanford).

No. Accounting is one part of finance, but it's not the biggest part and it's not even the same type of accounting that accountants use. Financial accounting and non-financial accounting (i.e. accounting used by the IRS and accountants) are similar in the same way that criminal law is similar to contract law: they're in the same academic college, but training in one doesn't do anything to make you better in the other.

Accounting is backward looking. It looks at how to accurately record past transactions (i.e., audits) and is utilized to minimize taxes.

Finance is forward looking. It focuses on making smart future transactions.

There's three types of finance, and only one of them requires more than a passing understanding of non-financial accounting. Corporate finance looks at forecasting and at obtaining funds (i.e. relationships with bankers or large potential stockholders). Project finance looks at making smart investments in business assets. Investment finance (also called asset pricing) looks at making smart investments in financial assets (i.e. stocks and bonds, rather than buying a new office building or a new factory like they do in project finance).

To be a CFO, you can come from either background. But if you're a CFO who is a finance person you typically need a very strong accounting person as your number 2 (and vice-versa).

At the undergrad level, finance majors have the second best job placements outside of engineering or the hard sciences (physics, biology, chemistry). The first? Accounting. But there's a lot higher standard deviation in starting finance salaries than starting accounting salaries (i.e. top finance majors make more than top accounting majors, but bottom finance majors make a lot less than bottom accounting majors).

Source: I'm a finance professor (with a PhD), and in my past life I worked in a small enough company that we had to interact very closely with the accountants.

Financial Accounting, Management Accounting (such as standard costs and other internal measurement methods) and Tax Accounting are very closely related. Specializing in financial accounting doesn't make you a good tax accountant or vice versa, but the basics are much the same. And a good accountant can't be just backward looking. You look at what those financials are telling you about the future.
03-17-2017 08:04 PM
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