What is it like to be a MSc&T student? Gleb Gorbatshevich in EDCAF


Before coming to l’X, Gleb was majoring in Economics and Social sciences in Lomonosov Moscow State University, in Moscow. After graduating, he worked as a macroeconomist in the Russian government, which was a unique and challenging experience. However, he longed for something new that would enable him to deepen his expertise and put his intellectual capacities to the test. That is why he applied to the Economics, Data Analytics and Corporate Finance Master program at École Polytechnique!

Why did you choose to study at École Polytechnique?

Having studied in scientific high schools, a few years later I found some of my classmates attending l’X for its Cycle Ingénieur program. Therefore, after deciding to continue my educational journey, I had quite an accurate perception of the French educational system and its centres of excellence. If one considers to study Applied Economics, Finance and Data Analytics, École Polytechnique, with its rigorous quantitative tradition, is definitely a go-to place. In addition to the academic part, there is esprit de corps, sports and vibrant student life on a somewhat isolated campus - in a word, perfect setting to make your French fly from day one.

How did you get to know the Economics, Data Analytics and Corporate Finance Masters? In your opinion, what are its main benefits?

Frankly, it was the name that caught my eye - and it says it all. As somebody who was aspiring to make a down-to-earth transfer from macroeconomics and having more or less general knowledge about the three subject fields, I was naturally attracted by the apparent flexibility of the program - and it didn’t take long to prove to be true. The courses vary from being introductory, but still fast-paced enough not to be too repetitive for those who already been there, to rather demanding and requiring significant preparation. The program allows you to construct your own educational trajectory, however challenging you want it to be.

Could you please say a few words about your promotion?

Being a small school by the world standards in terms of its sheer size, École Polytechnique places a great emphasize on the development of interpersonal links - between faculty and students, as well as within the student body itself - and we were just 16 in our class. Coming from truly varied backgrounds - both cultural and educational - we have been able to benefit from the close-knit yet heterogeneous environment of great personalities and no less profound interests - stretching from machine learning and trading to general consulting to a rather narrative application of economic theory, as in my case.

Where did you do your internship last year? How did you find it?

My first-year internship was at the industrial organization research centre at École des Mines, where we studied competition dynamics on the pharmaceutical markets. It was definitely an enriching experience as not only was I able to join established economists in their research work, but since I didn’t speak any French upon arrival at the school, I was also able to work on my language skills in a welcoming international, but still French-dominated, work environment. This unparalleled opportunity became possible thanks to some engaging courses we had in the first year and to close interaction with the Department of Economics of l’X. The internship allowed me to get hands-on experience with classroom acquired skills and to get a better taste of what PhD life is and to see whether I might want to pursue academia-related opportunities in the future.

What about your 2nd year internship?

My current internship is at Compass Lexecon – an economic consulting firm, taking on economic analysis of European mergers and acquisitions and checking market discipline of the companies like Google, Microsoft and Apple. Due to the confinement, the start was postponed until June 1st. However, already from the preparatory readings I am finding myself at the intersection of economics and law, diving into the caveats of corporate strategy and financial statements – exciting stuff!

What would you like to do after your Master's degree?

I am planning to pursue professional opportunities in economic consulting, the versatile DNA of which is consonant with the spirit of our program. Being quite different from its strategic or management counterparts, it deals with the burden of proof for litigation and competition-related issues on the markets thus ensuring that economic theory and sound data analysis meet each other well in the choppy waters of corporate dynamics.