As students around the world are preparing to enter college, we often ask each other what we have for our college and career aspirations. Here’s how I answer this question to my peers; I hope this will be a bit of use to you when you are faced with the choice of what to study.
I want to start out by starting a company, then transition to investment. Usually, this means I should be studying business (majoring in economics) in college.
When I was applying for colleges in the US, I discovered many colleges didn’t have business classes for undergraduates. Most only go on to study an MBA after getting a few years professional work experience, some courses even have this as a requirement. This makes sense, as business sense can only be gained through your own experience. Thus, studying business and management may simply end up being a waste of time. This is especially true in an age where startups and technology are disrupting the industry every day. Traditional business isn’t as applicable as before.
But don’t decide to give up studying business just yet, it is still very important. I’m only here to make a point on why a practical skill is becoming just as important.
For most of the colleges I’ve applied to, I will be choosing Computer Science as my major. I believe financial technology is the future of investment and business, just as technology is becoming an integral part of any product or service.
In recent years, technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain have slowly become indispensable tools for making money. Big and small players on Wall Street are trading stocks at nearly the speed of light, investors are using AI to analyze companies, and blockchain is just the tip of the iceberg to overhauling the whole economy. It used to be that the top investors were worth millions; now the algorithms that they have written are worth just as much.
I won’t be studying Computer Science to become a developer or engineer, but rather to be able to understand the language that developers speak. A background in CS will enable me to more efficiently understand developers or work with their teams, and it will allow me to prototype my ideas faster.
In this day and age, learning to anticipate what’s coming next is very important as is preparing for change and thinking outside the box.