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Northwestern vs Cornell vs UIUC for computer engineering

snowdencolesnowdencole Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
I get these are very different schools, but we're torn. From everything we've researched, UIUC might be the most challenging with the most depth and incredible engineering facilities, but the other two offer more quality breadth and personal attention. We live in Illinois, so certainly would be nice to not have to pay the big bucks...but taking $$ out of the equation, any recommendations here? Note, we've visited all 3 schools. Tough decision.

Replies to: Northwestern vs Cornell vs UIUC for computer engineering

  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 61,594 Senior Member
    Since all three are reach schools (UIUC may not be for the school, but is for the CS major), the answer is likely to be whichever one the student is admitted to, if any.
  • snowdencolesnowdencole Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    Thanks. Correct. This is for my son -- so I'm paying the bill. I think he can get into UIUC, and has a good shot of getting into NW or Cornell if he uses the early decision option. Here's my dilemma. I can probably afford to send him to the $$ option, but I question whether those are worth it, especially if UIUC is the better option (for engineering and especially computer engineering, not other majors).
  • osuprofosuprof Registered User Posts: 329 Member
    NU and to an extent Cornell will give closer interaction with faculty and smaller classes, as compared to UIUC. NU isn't particularly strong in computer engineering (though has a good overall engineering program).

    If the final goal is to work as an engineer, UIUC is as good as it gets. NU will open more doors if you want to get an engineering degree but then head towards consulting or IB.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Registered User Posts: 61,594 Senior Member
    One other thing to consider is that if the student wants to change major, doing so at UIUC can be more difficult for more majors than at many other schools. It may be worth looking, for each possible school and major, at the results of a web search for "[school name] change major [new major]".
  • fivesagesfivesages Registered User Posts: 69 Junior Member
    I agree with @osuprof and @ucbalumnus...if you can support financially, I would go with Cornell or NU. One, your son's interests may change...majority of students change once they go to college; Two, private schools, especially at Cornell and NU level, provide strong supportive communities and long-term benefits. If I have to pick, I would probably pick Cornell for two reasons...a strong computer program, opportunity to experience a different part of the country.
  • 1d51jklad11d51jklad1 Registered User Posts: 89 Junior Member
    edited September 14
    @osuprof nailed it.

    UIUC is likely the strongest of the three for a kid who wants to work as an engineer right out of college. Cornell and Northwestern are probably better choices for a kid who wants to leverage the engineering degree into finance, consulting, or grad school.
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