Shreya Sharda with class mates.

Reflecting on my Cambridge Master of Finance year: Shreya Sharda

12 October 2023

The article at a glance

Master of Finance student Shreya Sharda shares some of the highlights from his MFin year, the opportunities he has experienced over the past 12 months, and how the programme has equipped him for his next career move.

As my last term of the Cambridge Master of Finance comes to an end, I find myself reflecting on the incredible journey I have had over the past year. It has been a whirlwind of learning, growth, and unforgettable experiences that have shaped me both personally and professionally.

Choosing my summer term options

For the summer term, I chose to take a class elective, which turned out to be an enriching and fulfilling decision. The MFin at Cambridge is an intensive course requiring academic rigor and group project work from the start of the Michaelmas term through to the end of Easter term. Going into the last (summer) term, I realised that this would be my last opportunity to study and explore any specific topics that intrigued me.

The elective I took, Financial Innovation in Emerging Markets, offered a unique perspective at the intersection of macroeconomy, geopolitical dynamics, technology, innovation and finance. The class discussions challenged my thinking and broadened my understanding of the role finance plays in addressing the emerging global challenges.

Exploring the city of Cambridge and beyond

In addition to the elective, I made the best use of the time to enhance my skillsets through certifications and other learning platforms provided by the School. This was also the time I was able to take some time-off from the academic side and explore the nature and biodiversity in and around Cambridge – an aspect of Cambridge which is less spoken about.

Cambridge has some amazing riverside spots, designated local nature reserves and natural ecosystems which one should definitely cherish while staying in Cambridge. This immersive experience has further increased my passion to contribute to nature finance and try to make natural capital equitably accessible to communities.

Cycling through Cambridge.
Cambridge scenery
Exploring hidden Cambridge.
Exploring hidden Cambridge

Discovering student leadership roles

My journey at Cambridge has been about much more than just academic pursuits. Engaging in extracurricular activities and taking on leadership roles has allowed me to connect with like-minded individuals and make a meaningful impact within the University community.

Shreya discussing sustainable action with the MBAT team.
Shreya discussing sustainable action with the MBAT team

Throughout the year, my role as the Class Representative provided me with the opportunity to serve as a bridge between the students and faculty, and to promote a collaborative learning environment. Not only was it a great platform to connect with my cohort, it also provided me with an opportunity to attend discussions with members of faculty, learn about their approach to structuring a module, and contribute to improving the overall MFin experience for my cohort (and future MFin cohorts).

I also served as the Director of Sustainability for the Cambridge Judge Business School MBA Tournament (MBAT) team, where I worked on integrating sustainable practices within all functions of the team. This was the first time the Business School team had specifically focused on sustainability for our participation at the MBAT. From organising interactive events such as Climate Fresk and promoting eco-friendly initiatives, to encouraging the adoption of greener transportation options, it was rewarding to witness the positive changes being embraced by the participants and the organisers of the competition. It was also a great opportunity to closely work with my fellow MBA students.

Preparing for the next step in my career journey

As I prepare to bid farewell to Cambridge, I am filled with gratitude for the knowledge, friendships, and belongingness that are now etched in my memories for eternity. The MFin programme has not only equipped me with a solid understanding of financial concepts but also inspired me to view finance as a force for good. I feel empowered to embark on my professional journey with a strong commitment to contributing to the most pressing aspects of today’s time, including sustainable development and climate change.

To all the incoming students, I encourage you to embrace every opportunity that comes your way, whether it’s through academic pursuits, extracurricular activities, or community engagement. Each experience will contribute to your growth and shape your path in unimaginable ways.

As I embark the next chapter of my life, I am excited to carry the lessons I’ve learned here at Cambridge with me, and I am optimistic about the positive impact I can make in the world of finance.

Shreya Sharda.

About the blog author

Shreya joined the MFin programme with over 5 years of experience as a management consultant, where he had been enabling sustainable investments in urban infrastructure sector.

He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and an MBA, and is passionate about creating impact through private investments towards green infrastructure, energy transition, and emerging aspects of nature-based solutions.

Beyond work, Shreya loves travelling, getting to know local communities and cultures, and playing badminton.