Carnegie Mellon University

Michelle Ruvolo-Jones

Michelle Ruvolo-Jones

Executive Director - J.P. Morgan Alternative Asset Management

What led you to the MSCF program?

I was working in a risk management role at an asset management firm and wanted to strengthen my technical skills. My supervisor had researched financial engineering programs and concluded that MSCF was the best –the most practical and well rounded. I trusted his judgment and enrolled.

Which MSCF courses have been the most helpful throughout your career?

While the techniques used in the programming courses are still ones I use today, the value of the MSCF curriculum has been in the questions it tackles. Discussions on risk management and portfolio construction are ongoing in the investment community, and understanding how to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches has been key for my role.

What do you enjoy most about your career?

Quantitative Finance is a constantly evolving field and there is always something new to learn. I enjoy the freedom to be creative and to continue to ask questions.  

What are the strengths of the MSCF program?

I found the program to be the right balance between the practical and the theoretical. A wide range of topics is covered, but much of the focus is on implementation. In quantitative investing, the difference between a strategy that is successful and one that isn’t often comes down to choices made and care taken in implementation. 

What recruiting demands are you seeing from the industry?

The field of quantitative finance has rapidly expanded over the last ten years. Firms are increasingly looking for talent at all levels with relevant skills in computer engineering and applied statistics. Additionally, more allocators are looking for candidates with technical backgrounds to help them evaluate quantitative investment offerings.