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2016 FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship Recipient Advances Knowledge in Rare Event Detection and Market Destabilization Phenomena
By Nik Venema | April 7, 2016

Today FINCAD named Parisa Golbayani the recipient of the 2016 FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship. Golbayani will receive USD $10,000 to apply towards pursuing her PhD in Financial Engineering at the Stevens Institute of Technology.

FINCAD’s annual scholarship program is aimed at encouraging and supporting exceptional women in finance, particularly in the areas of derivatives and financial risk management. This year, the company received applications from over 200 deserving women from over 50 countries, but ultimately Golbayani’s outstanding qualifications positioned her as the scholarship recipient.  

Golbayani graduated in 2011 with a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the Babol University of Technology, Iran. She continued her studies in the US at the Stevens Institute of Technology, where she obtained a M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering and began pursuing her PhD in Financial Engineering.

“Around the time I completed my bachelor’s degree in Iran, my brother made the decision to come to the US in order to pursue his degree in mechanical engineering,” explained Golbayani. “I began to imagine myself in the same situation. So, I went forward applying to universities in the US and was accepted to a few different ones. I ultimately selected Stevens Institute because of the university’s strong reputation, the campus’ close proximity to New York City and the fact that I was granted a research position. I was also impressed by the university’s high-ranking statistics around placing graduates in jobs.”

Golbayani confided that making the transition to life in the US took some getting used to. “Moving here four years ago was a bit of a culture shock. Even though I was fairly fluent in English, adjusting to a country where it is the primary language was a hurdle. Also, in Iran, everything is governed by Iranian law and in the US it’s a bit more lax. Thankfully, I had and continue to have the full support of my family. They have been very open-minded and wonderful about giving me the encouragement I need to pursue my career interests,” said Golbayani.

Having completed both her undergraduate and graduate studies in electrical engineering, Golbayani explained that she felt compelled to change direction and explore the realm of finance for her PhD. “Right now there is tremendous opportunity in the financial field, and I wanted to take advantage of that,” she said. Golbayani’s research is focused on one of the most fundamental problems affecting the current state of the financial industry— understanding the phenomena around market destabilization and crash events. She is tasked with developing an early-warning system that can detect rare events and market crash conditions in real-time.     

Following completion of her PhD coursework, Golbayani plans to exercise her entrepreneurial spirit by starting up her own Fintech company focused on risk management solutions. She views FINCAD’s scholarship award as an important asset that is helping her attain this goal. “Being recognized with this award has greatly boosted my self-confidence as a woman entering the financial field. Additionally, the scholarship money I’ve received is allowing me to stay focused on my research with less financial worry. I’ll also have the opportunity to attend some great educational conferences, which would not have been possible if it weren’t for FINCAD,” commented Golbayani

Golbayani continued, “I think what FINCAD is doing by offering this award is incredible. It is so refreshing that a company would go out of its way to uplift women and help make attaining their career aspirations that much easier.”

Are you, or is someone you know, interested in applying for this scholarship? Applications for the 2017 FINCAD Women in Finance Scholarship will begin to be accepted this Fall. This opportunity is open to women of any age and citizenship who are studying Finance in an accredited graduate-level or PhD program.

To learn more about FINCAD, and our commitment to encouraging and supporting outstanding women in finance, read a blog post by Lori Aizer Bryenton, VP of Marketing at FINCAD.