Valeria Gallo is a participant on the MSc Global Central Banking and Financial Regulation. In this post, she discusses how the programme's unique features gave her the confidence to pursue postgraduate studies to further her career.
I started working in financial services innovation and technology policy about seven years ago. I entered this professional field more by chance than design. And while my undergraduate degree in international economics certainly helped somewhat, most of my learning has been on the job.
Over time, I increasingly felt the desire to pursue further postgraduate studies to consolidate and enhance my knowledge and confidence to progress in my career. However, I hesitated for a long time because I found the financial commitments of these programmes as well as the need to take time off work to study too daunting.
I was therefore delighted when I found that Warwick Business School's MSc Global Central Banking and Financial Regulation was specially designed for professionals from across the globe who wanted to pursue their studies while working full-time. In addition, the programme also allows students to enrol and obtain postgraduate awards for individual modules, rather than committing to the whole programme from the start. This is a very inclusive approach that helps individuals who, like me, feel nervous about going back to study after many years and may prefer to take one step at a time.
Finally, last September, I took the leap and applied, supported by the School's fantastic recruitment team. I elected to start with the Behavioural Finance and Big Data module, which I have since successfully completed. I have been surprised at how much I have learnt in just a few months (including coding!) and how easy it was to do so while juggling a demanding job.
Because the learning is entirely self-paced through online recorded lessons and material, it allowed me the flexibility to focus on work priorities if and when I needed it. But above all, I benefited extensively from the ongoing support and expertise of Warwick's excellent and approachable tutors, both through the dedicated forum and the four live sessions. The course also included guest lectures from leading figures in financial services and central banking. Their insights helped me appreciate how the concepts learnt in the class translate into real risks and opportunities in modern and fast-changing financial markets.
Most importantly, I can already see the positive impact of what I learnt in the course on my everyday job performance. For example, knowing the key concepts of Behavioural Finance and how to assess the use of machine learning techniques critically is helping me participate more meaningfully in policy debates on how data and technological innovation are transforming financial services and customer journeys and behaviours.
I am now confident I can handle the full Master's degree and enrolled on the "Money, Banks and Macroeconomics" module, which started in February. And I am oddly already looking forward to the exams in June!
You can read more about the Global Central Banking and Financial Regulation programme on the course pages.