chocolatechipsss: My older daughter is a 2nd year ARCE (Architectural Engineering) major at Cal Poly and loves it there! Yes there are more men than women in her engineering classes but she's used to it and it's never been a problem - she's always had more male than female friends. I know some engineering schools (e.g. Colorado School of Mines) that have a 2:1 or even 3:1 male/female ratio so Cal Poly is actually pretty good. You'll probably be taking some number of GE courses as well which may have a more balanced m/f ratio. Two out of my daughter's 3 roommates are environmental engineering majors - so they all support each other and are members of SWE. My younger daughter will probably be attending Cal Poly in the fall as a GENE major, so from my limited perspective, there are lots of female engineering students at Cal Poly!
Hahaha. Thanks! I know what you mean by having more male than female friends. Girls can be drama at times. Congrats to your daughter for getting into SLO. I'm sure I'll see her at SWE meetings and such.
We're out of town on Poly Cultural Wk, but will be at the open house the following weekend. I'm sure she will be at the SWE meeting sometime. We've already toured the campus & engineering program last summer. They've amazing eng labs and freshmen get to be in it right away unlike the UC system. As a manager, we love hiring SLO engineers because they are ready to work right away. It's probably the reason why I introduced SLO to my daughter who is interested in eng. If you meet an asian girl names Alex in the program, she is mine.
"I was recently accepted for general engineering - I was under the impression that you could sort of choose which type of engineering appealed to you from there. dijkstra, you said that typically General Engineering people choose BMED? This is concerning because I know that I definitely do not want to go the Bio route, as I really dislike Biology."
You could choose what type of engineering appealed to you from there and taking those concentrated courses starting junior year. In your freshman year, you take core engineering classes. In my original post, I posted the BMED flow chart-- this the GENE flow chart http://bmegene.calpoly.edu/media/upl...Flow_Chart.pdf As you can see you will be taking lower-division ENGR courses as well as support courses: Math/Science/GE's.
@chocolatechipsss -- Congrats on making the decision to go for Cal Poly. You mention in your posts that you were considering other schools. Do not fall into the Asian trap that the UC's are better. We are Asian mixed and sooo happy we broke ranks and my son chose Cal Poly over the UC's. All his friends that are attending the UC's for engineering will be lucky if they get an engineering class by, take notes here, their JUNIOR year. Also, at the UC's expect the majority of your instructors to be TA's. At Cal Poly, you will start engineering classes in the first quarter of your freshman year and enjoy lab time and actual professors for pretty much every class.
My son was up in the air about what to major is. He was sure that he would choose CE or EE, but at the last minute he chose GENE. Good thing, after his first quarter he chose ME! We would have never guessed that starting the process. Between his clubs and the friends he chose, he naturally gravitated towards ME. So, your comment that you might choose something that you never thought of came true for us.
By the way, my kid got into to five UC's and Cal Poly Pomona. He turned down UCLA, UCSD and the other top schools for Cal Poly SLO -- absolutely no regrets. He loves it. Where else can you as a freshman travel with your club halfway across the US for national competition?
Wit regards to female / male ratios -- no worries. One of the senior leaders of his club is woman. She gets more respect than anyone else.
Thanks OsakaDad. I totally hear you on the "Asian trap" on the UCs. I told one of my friends (a CSE major) who hasn't heard back from SLO that if she's accepted she should definitely tour the campus because that's what made me sure that I wanted to go to Cal Poly. Her response was, "Oh... I really want to go to a UC though. They're better." My expression? >.> I had another friend tell me explicitly, "Why would you go to Cal Poly when you could go to UCLA or Berkeley?" Others have told me that Cal States are "beneath" me. That probably annoys me the most because that undermines all these students in the CSU system. I say this time and time again to people, but the Cal States are very underrated. They're not jokes to get accepted to anyone.
This is a classic argument. UC research and "scholarship" vs CSU practical application. First, Cal Poly is in the CSU system but, it is very different from a Cal State. In fact both Cal Poly's (SLO and Pomona) are a breed apart. Second, employers prefer Cal Poly to the UC's for engineering. I can say this with confidence as Cal Poly SLO grads enjoy the highest starting salaries of any California public school and most of the privates as well. This includes UC Berkeley and with regards to UCLA, that school's salaries never catch up with Cal Poly's even at the mid-career level. In our case, all our relatives in Asia had heard of UCLA and UC Berkeley -- no one had heard of Cal Poly. They all understood our choice when we explained why we chose the program. My kid wants to be a work ready engineer as soon as possible. He wants to do things right now -- now years from now. He wants to be in the machine shop creating things now. He wants to graduate with a job and be ready to take on responsibilities immediately. Not after a year of on the job training.
Here is a true story of a very smart Hong Kong Chinese couple that my wife and I met at SOAR (student orientation and registration) last summer. They both studied engineering at UC Berkeley and the husband went on to grad school at Stanford. However, they were enrolling their son at Cal Poly SLO. When the husband graduated with his master's degree he was hired at an engineering firm together with a Cal Poly grad. It took him a full year to catch up with the Cal Poly grad on the job. He never forgot that experience.
My son will most likely do the combined undergrad and grad degree (the 4+1 program) that Cal Poly offers for most engineering majors. We are very happy. But, most importantly, he loves it.
I'm thinking of doing the 4+1 program also. Even though I accepted admission and paid the housing fee, my family is encouraging me to consider backing out because SLO doesn't have my first choice, ChemE. I'm pretty sure that's what I want to do, but I'm not 100% sure. I'm open to exploring other types because I chose ChemE more out of process of elimination than anything else. I really love SLO, but my wants and practicality are very conflicting. Any advice from anyone would be helpful.
chocolatechipsss: I understand your dilemna since I am also Asian (Japanese!), grew up in the L.A. area, and attended UCLA (many years ago!). At that time, there was a perception that the UC's were 'better' than the CSU's, and it seems to be prevalent even today. But I agree that the Cal Poly schools (both SLO and Pomona) are in a class by themselves, and should be ranked up there with the best, especially for engineering and architecture. The company that my husband and I work for, Northrop-Grumman, considers Cal Poly SLO to be one of the top colleges that we recruit from, and I completely agree with both OsakaDad and 2012engmom regarding Cal Poly's 'Learn By Doing' philosophy better preparing its graduates for the work force. Also, being familiar with the L.A. area, I would much prefer that my daughters attend Cal Poly SLO rather than UCLA or USC - both schools are large and located in heavily urban/congested areas, where I'd have safety concerns for them. Cal Poly SLO is smaller (more of a medium-sized campus) and located in a much nicer area with more of a rural feel, which seems to be the perfect fit for my daughters! I'm sure you'll do well wherever you choose - good luck!
chocolatechipsss: I reread your post and realized that your dilemma was regarding the fact that Cal Poly did not have your first choice of major, ChemE. My younger daughter is sure she wants to study engineering, but isn't 100% sure of the specialty area, although she is leaning towards BioEngineering. Luckily, Cal Poly has a GENE major and BioEngineering, both in the same department! And it sounds like transferring majors within the Engineering school isn't a problem. But if ChemE is really what you are leaning towards, Cal Poly might not be the best fit. It's ironic because my younger daughter also got accepted to Colorado School of Mines and CU Boulder, both of which have ChemE majors but not BioEngineering. She believes Cal Poly is the best fit for her, but is having to deal with the reality of leaving the state and being so far from her family and friends. She'll probably end up at Cal Poly - but it's a big decision! Also, no decision is permanent, and you can always transfer to another school if things don't work out. Many of my daughter's friends have done just that and are doing fine. Again - good luck!
@ chocolatechipss-- If this is any help at all for being a ChE, I grad in the 80s in ChE with emphasis in env eng. Anyway, there are many different specialty within ChE such as env. eng / process control / material sci eng / bio eng / petroleum eng so forth. If you have some early idea of the type of work environment that you are comfortable in, you can narrow down the field of eng alot. I believe SLO has alot of the specialty available in someway (may be not petroleum eng).
I knew early on that I am not made to be behind the desk or labs from experience at different internships. I work best when I can take info from the field and translat it into something meaningful and workable. With that I end up in manufacturing which provided me amble of opp to design equipment and processes as well as env eng. Regardless of your final selection, go with your heart to what works best for you. My Mom once tried to stop me from going to UC for eng because it is not what an Asian girl do in the 80s. My high child is hearing the same "silly" message from others that State College is not as highly regarded as UC, and as a manager who interviewed and hired eng, I would say that SLO has a program competitive to the higher rank UC.
I told my girl that the reputation of a school is defined by the students/instructors' achievement. We don't become a great engineer just because the school has a good reputation. Hope this is helpful. Regardless of your final choices, you will do well since you sound like someone else in my household. Good luck again to you.