I’m originally from Mexico City; I grew up there and then studied my bachelor’s degree in financial management at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM). I have a strong determination to pursue a career in finance, specifically in investment banking advisory. I am always up for a challenge and enjoy learning as much as possible about different companies across different industries—from evaluating business plans to deal execution.
“The Master in Finance is a highly demanding program where we can connect theoretical knowledge to what is happening today in the financial industry, in a practical way.”
Greater gender equality in the finance sector: being part of the change.
Mariana Rojo was no stranger to Madrid when she embarked on the Master in Finance at IE University, having already spent some time in the city when she participated in an exchange program during her undergraduate studies. It was during that time that she first heard about IE University, when she had the chance to speak to various finance professionals who spoke very highly of the institution. She was impressed by what she heard, and this sparked in her a desire to study here.
Before then, Mariana had already gained some work experience in the finance sector, spending a couple of years working as a financial analyst for a Fortune 500 company. There, she was able to develop her skills in different areas, such as pricing, financial planning and analysis, and commercial finance. She says that her time there helped her to “understand the end-to-end process of a company and to work towards strategic goals.”
However, after realizing that other areas were of greater interest to her, Mariana decided she wanted to shift her career path in a direction where she could help companies gain funding, develop their business plans and have an active role in the global markets. She knew that she would need to build her knowledge and skills in order to achieve this career goal and so in 2023, she knew without a doubt that it was the right time for her to enroll in the Master in Finance.
Since then, she hasn’t looked back. While she admits that the program is a big commitment that requires a lot of you, the opportunities and potential rewards make it worthwhile. The hands-on methods that are at the core of IE University’s approach to learning are what really stand out to Mariana. “We can connect theoretical knowledge to what is happening today in the financial industry, in a practical way.”
“IE Business School has a strong commitment to women and gives us access to many unique opportunities.”
As a woman entering a sector which is still predominantly male-led, Mariana is also impressed by IE University’s commitment to support and empower women in finance. In addition to a range of events and activities specifically aimed at women aspiring to break into the world of finance, Mariana has gained access to an invaluable network of peers, alumni and female professionals who are already leading the way in reducing gender inequality in the sector.
With ambitions to gain a further qualification as a Chartered Financial Analyst from the CFA Institute—something that she knows will help her stand out in the eyes of employers—Mariana is grateful for the technical skills that the Master in Finance is equipping her with, which will help her on the path to this future endeavor.
But alongside that, the soft skills that Mariana is acquiring outside of the classroom—through activities such as group meetings and class representative activities, among others—are also providing her with valuable preparation for when she re-enters the world of work. She is taking full advantage of the services offered by IE Talent & Careers, and is a candidate for an investment banking summer internship in London when she finishes her program.
Mariana encourages future students to “Stay focused on what you want to achieve after the Master in Finance.” She also recommends prioritizing and keeping on top of all the different tasks and activities that will come your way—whether it be academic work, preparing for job interviews or attending networking events. The key, she says, is not to lose sight of why you’re there, so that you can get the most out of the experience. “Always remember the end goal, because there is a lot to do and time is limited.”