What is Magna Cum Laude?​

Magna cum laude is the second best of three Latin honors given to a graduate who meets certain criteria set by educational institutions.

What is the Magna Cum Laude honor?

Magna cum laude is an academic honor of distinction that is typically awarded to a student who graduates in the top 10% or 15% of their class. It is the second highest honorable mention following behind summa cum laude. The Latin word means “with great honor” and is usually most relevant for undergraduates in a few countries, including, USA, Israel, Indonesia, Philippines, the Dominican Republic, and other parts of continental Europe.

The magna cum laude is often seen as the second highest latin honor of distinction, following immediately after the suma cum laude. This distinction means “of (or with) the highest honor”, and is sometimes only awarded to one individual per batch of graduation students. Naturally, this student is often the valedictorian of the graduating class.

Immediately succeeding the distinction of magna cum laude is the distinction of cum laude, which means “with honor”.

What Criteria or Guidelines Qualify Someone for Magna Cum Laude?

The guidelines to achieve the magna cum laude level of distinction vary from one institution to another. Every university or college sets their own criteria for students to meet in order to obtain this level. Some universities like Texas A&M set the following criteria – 60 credit hours of work toward a degree while earning a GPA of 3.70 to 3.89.  The student’s final grades from the last semester before graduation are included in this GPA. Other requirements could include the submission of an honors thesis for evaluation or being part of an honors program.

What Jobs Seek Students Who Have Received the Magna Cum Laude Level of Distinction?

The fields of finance, management, consulting, and engineering pursue graduates who have obtained magna cum laude.  In finance, holding this distinction is preferred for an equity research analyst, in either the buy-side and sell-side. An equity analyst is usually the investment bankers’ and brokers’ go-to-person for expertise; therefore, it is important for a candidate to be well equipped with the academic skills and knowledge in this field. Although academic achievements do not always guarantee success in the workplace, a magna cum laude honor is an advantage that can help a candidate make his or her first step towards career success.

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