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Chances of getting a job with a low GPA

sparky12sparky12 Posts: 1Registered User New Member
Since, I've transfered to UIUC's engineering program my performance has been degrading each semester. I'm at a 3.011 overall GPA , after three semesters of attendance. Not to be ****timistic, but I know that it will continue to fall way lower then a 3.0 due to the fact that I have three more semesters to go and UIUC engr doesn't get any easier. What do you think my chances of getting a job in material science engr-ing if I had a four semester co-op, an internship, and undergraduate research position in my specialization?
Post edited by sparky12 on

Replies to: Chances of getting a job with a low GPA

  • boomer01boomer01 Posts: 891Registered User Member
    sorry, sparky12 I cannot help with your questions. But I have some questions of my own.
    I am a prospective engineering major and I have been accepted at UIUC. How hard is it to maintain a GPA of 3.5 or above? Would I have to work day and night and have no life to achieve those results? How helpful are the professors? Is it easy to get help if I am having difficulties with a subject? Do the TA's teach most of the classes? How easy is to get a research position? If you can answer these questions, It would be really helpfull. Thanks again.
  • digmediadigmedia Posts: 2,942Registered User Senior Member
    sparky -

    I've done a bit of hiring of people with engineering degrees (although not materials science). The GPA may be a factor in the very first job you get (although less than you think). What's more important will be your references, which WILL be contacted. Will you have professors that will be willing to say that he/she would hire you for a position like the one for which you're being considered? I remember very few resumes that even had a GPA on it. In general, once beyond college (and maybe your very first job), "GPA" will never again enter your vocabulary, until you too have a son or daughter that's preparing for college.

    Now, if you're going on to grad school, GPA might be important. But I got into grad school with full support, including stipend, with a 3.0 GPA from Ga. Tech. You've got to realize that engineering school is not like high school, where everyone gets A's and B's and a C is the grade of death.
  • keskul368keskul368 Posts: 28Registered User New Member
    Don't worry beyond your first job when you have little experiance GPA is hardly a factor, concentrate on getting the experiance that shows your competent in your field and the degree. From there you'll be okay. --Even if you place low in your graduating class, a few years of post. grad. work experiance, a great show of dedication and a nice score on entrance exams could mean that you have a chance at grad. school in the future.
  • mshillmshill Posts: 1Registered User New Member
    Sorry sparky, but the truth is that you will have to study day and night for the UIUC engineering program. I just graduated in May 2004, and was literally in the library so much that the staff knew me by name. The disappointing part is thst even though i did all that studying, I still graduated with a gpa less than 3.0. Even sadder is that I have four summers of internship experience in my major (Aerospace Engineering), as well as excellent references from school and work, and the dreaded GPA question, always leads to, " I'm sorry but we only consider candidates with a 3.0 GPA or higher". So my advice to you is that if you do attend UIUC work your butt off, and try as hard, as you can and maybe you will be luckier than I have been so far. Good Luck.
  • justinmechejustinmeche Posts: 577Registered User Member
    I know I a guy who is graduating from an elite engineering program with a GPA right below 3.0 (B- average). Simply because of that GPA he was not able to interview with some companies. His good internship experience didn't play any factor because most of his classmates had good experience but higher GPAs as well. His low GPA was an immediate disqualification, and he even got rejected by a company he interned with for two summers. My GPA is 3.49 in mechanical engineering and I received several interview offers from companies who came to campus for interviewing (for internships this summer). I think one company required 2.5 or above but every other company required 3.0 or higher. I'm going to work hard to keep my GPA where it is so companies will at least look beyond the GPA once they see it meets their requirements.
  • Terp1004Terp1004 Posts: 72Registered User Junior Member
    I'm gonna give you some hope here. I am graduating this semester with a degree in EE and Economics. I only have a 2.75 gpa along with 7-8 internship experiences. I was dead scared while applying for jobs last semester because of my low gpa. However, my experience was able to cover for my GPA, and as a result, I had 20+ interviews last semester. I was able to get 5 offers from fortune 500 companies. Sure, there were some jobs and special programs that had the 3.0+ cumulative gpa requirement. But there are still plenty of good jobs out there that didn't impose the rule. Also, when you go into your first round interview, make sure to fully explain why your gpa is so low. More importantly, be sincere and tell the interviewer what you learned from your struggles in college. I find that most employers are sympathetic to you as long as you have legitimate reasons for the low gpa.
    I believe that GPA is only enough to get you into the first round, and perhaps when candidates are neck to neck when making decisions on offers. For the most part though, once you are in the first round, it is up to you how much you want the job and how well you can sell yourself to the company. If you're graduating from UIUC engineering, you are already at an advantage regardless of your gpa. Technical interviewers KNOW how difficult engineering is. As long as you shine at interviews and show that you're able to apply the knowledge you learned from school whether it is from internships/research/tests/etc, you'll be more than fine.
  • bemyparaguaybemyparaguay Posts: 56Registered User Junior Member
    Honestly, it'll be experience that gets you a job. And people you know.
    Do well in your internships and remember those people and get on their good side. They're the ones who could offer you a job when you graduate.

    (My cousin graduated with a 2.8. He had an internship his last semester. He now has a job at the same place as the last internship.)
  • Papa ChickenPapa Chicken Posts: 2,841Registered User Senior Member
    As an engineering employer, I agree with most of the sage wisdom put forth here. Yes, perhaps GPA means something in the first job, perhaps. I only look at GPA to see if its WAY low or frankly WAY high. I worry about communications abilities & life experience context with the brainiacs. If I see a low GPA, say low 2's, I usuallly go course by course to figure out if there was a problem with a particular area.

    Bottom line, my ideal entry hire is a 3.3 student, who's played sports (i.e., a "team" player), led some kind of EC, and worked in the hospitality industry (i.e., waiter or waitress), the latter showing a penchant for dealing with people. Recommendations are always checked, and I give BIG preference to a professor who calls me directly to tell me a about a wonderful student of theirs.
  • vyasanvyasan Posts: 10Registered User New Member
    Wow this topic scares me. I have a 2.6 and I've completed 60 hrs of course work with another 70 to go. What if I get it upto 3.0 in 2 semesters? Is that good enough for an internship or co-op? I'm a ChE from UT Austin. Its ranked 6th in ChE.
  • moondogguymoondogguy Posts: 21Registered User New Member
    As a UIUC graduate with a degree in engineering (many years ago), and who occasionally recruits there for his employer for all types of engineers including materials engineers, I would say a minimum GPA is certainly a factor at least as far as getting an interview. We generally would not go much below a 3.0 and certainly the higher the GPA, the more likely you will attract some interest. Thats not to say there aren't exceptions for someone who makes up for the GPA in other ways (for example, someone who is very focused in courses and internships aimed predominately at our industry.) And I must admit, I've been sufficiently impressed on occasion during a brief five minutes discussion with a student during a recruiting fair to put their resume in the "A" pile (bring in for interview) despite a lower GPA. But that is for the student who has definately done their homework about our industry and specifically about our employer and seems genuinely excited about both (and most likely have come to the job fair specifically to talk to us). If you make the interview list, you are then on even footing with all the other candidates regardless of GPA and it comes down to how you sell yourself during the interviews. Only downside, if your GPA is below a certain level (I think around 2.8 give or take a little), the job offer would come in at a lower grade level (with somewhat lower salarly), but over the long term you are likely to catch up with the others and may even surpass them depending on how you do in the job. (We actually pay pretty well for entry level either way and can show applicants where they will be salary-wise in five years. The numbers certainly impress them.) So your job hunting task may be somewhat harder, but certainly not impossible. As an organization made up of mostly engineers, and managed by engineers who have come up through the ranks, we recognize the difficulty level of getting an engineering degree especially at one of the top schools.
  • taffytaffy Posts: 2,356- Senior Member
    i know a junior at uiuc in mechEng with like a 3.95 and an active social life, so its possible...
  • daggysdaggys Posts: 3Registered User New Member
  • bekkammabekkamma Posts: 1Registered User New Member
    thanks a lot. i am going thru a lot of mental turmoil coz my otherwise brilliant ward with excellent analytical ability, good communication skills and wonderful personality with highest level of ethics is down with low GPA at grad. I sem was 3.00 and II sem is 2.75. and the reason for lowering GPA is not his ability to understand the subject but on account of some procedural lapse. At this stage he has no internships and no coops and no on campus jobs. After going through your reply as an employer, i see some ray of hope. Thanks a lot.People like u do a lot good to the society. Thanks a lot.
  • UMEE11UMEE11 Posts: 95Registered User Junior Member
    I'm an engineer, the oil company I've been co-oping for (3 terms now) has a STRICT 3.0 cut-off. Will not interview below 3.0, and if your GPA falls below 3.0 while a co-op, you will not be allowed back, regardless of prior performance.
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