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JHU vs USC vs UCLA vs CMU

nubcaeknubcaek Posts: 54Registered User Junior Member
I'm having a really hard time shortening this list and ultimately making a decision but I only have about a week left to do so. I plan on majoring in bioengineering and possibly double-major (unlikely) or minor in some business-related field so I'm looking for a school that has both a very strong engineering program and business program.

I'm aware JHU has one of the best BME programs in the nations but unfortunately I didn't get into that program, but they do have a Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering major that is quite similar, just not as focused on medicine (or so I've heard).

USC is the only one giving me money as I'm an international student, but that really isn't too big of a deciding factor for me. Otherwise, I like that they have a good engineering and business department. I've visited and really love the Cali weather as I'm from the New England area.

I've walked around the UCLA campus, but not a formal tour. The campus and surrounding areas seem nice, but I don't really know too much other than they have a pretty good engineering department but no undergraduate business major (though there is economics).

I didn't really like the initial feel of CMU's campus and Pittsburgh as a whole, but it might just have been a bad first impression. As for academics, the engineering school forces those who want to do bioengineering to double major with a more traditional field of engineering, which might not leave room for a minor or (eek) third major in business. The quality of their engineering and business programs is very good though.

After college I'm planning on either doing something in the biotech industry or going full-out into business or finance or consulting and the like. Any input or advice would be appreciated, thanks.
Post edited by nubcaek on

Replies to: JHU vs USC vs UCLA vs CMU

  • Columbia_StudentColumbia_Student Posts: 5,046Registered User Senior Member
    USC for sure because this is USC forum. :)

    I went to the bookstore and USC has so many good finance text books so I think the finance deparment must be good. USC seems to offer lots of interesting courses.
  • Georgia GirlGeorgia Girl Posts: 3,538Registered User Senior Member
    nubcaek,
    You have some good choices. My suggestion is to PM TrojanChick99 who is on the SC campus now and would be able give more specifics. Generally, SC would be better than UCLA for undergraduate engineering as UCLA does not offer that. Also, SC has more emphasis on business on a global scale, with great opportunities and contacts in Asia.
    My brother is a graduate of SC in civil engineering. He took the exam to be a registered engineer the first time and passed easily. That is not your field exactly, but he felt prepared.
    Another poster here went to Explore SC and as a parent he was impressed by the brand new building and state of the art technology and equipment he saw there.
    Engineering is not my field. I wish I could be of more help to you.
    GG
  • Columbia_StudentColumbia_Student Posts: 5,046Registered User Senior Member
    US News 2009 Graduate Engineering Rankings
    Biomedical/Bioengineering
    Ranked in 2008
    1 Johns Hopkins University (Whiting) Baltimore, MD 4.7
    2 Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA 4.6
    University of California--San Diego (Jacobs) La Jolla, CA 4.6
    4 Duke University Durham, NC 4.5
    5 University of Washington Seattle, WA 4.3
    6 Massachusetts Institute of Technology Cambridge, MA 4.2
    7 Boston University Boston, MA 4.0
    University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA 4.0
    9 Case Western Reserve University Cleveland, OH 3.9
    Rice University (Brown) Houston, TX 3.9
    11 University of California--Berkeley Berkeley, CA 3.8
    University of Michigan--Ann Arbor Ann Arbor, MI 3.8
    13 Northwestern University (McCormick) Evanston, IL 3.7
    Stanford University Stanford, CA 3.7
    15 University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA 3.6
    University of Virginia Charlottesville, VA 3.6
    17 Washington University in St. Louis (Sever) St. Louis, MO 3.5
    18 Columbia University (Fu Foundation) New York, NY 3.4
    University of Texas--Austin (Cockrell) Austin, TX 3.4
    20 Purdue University--West Lafayette West Lafayette, IN 3.3
    University of Utah Salt Lake City, UT 3.3
    University of Wisconsin--Madison Madison, WI 3.3
    Vanderbilt University Nashville, TN 3.3
    24 California Institute of Technology Pasadena, CA 3.2
    25 Cornell University Ithaca, NY 3.1
    University of Minnesota--Twin Cities Minneapolis, MN 3.1
    27 Pennsylvania State University--University Park University Park, PA 3.0
    Texas A&M University--College Station (Look) College Station, TX 3.0
    University of California--Davis Davis, CA 3.0
    University of Southern California (Viterbi) Los Angeles, CA 3.0
    31 North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC 2.9
    Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Troy, NY 2.9
    33 Arizona State University (Fulton) Tempe, AZ 2.8
    CUNY--City College (Grove) New York, NY 2.8
    Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh, PA 2.8
    Drexel University Philadelphia, PA 2.8
    Marquette University Milwaukee, WI 2.8
    Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey--New Brunswick Piscataway, NJ 2.8
    Yale University New Haven, CT 2.8
    40 University of California--Irvine (Samueli) Irvine, CA 2.7
    University of Iowa Iowa City, IA 2.7
    University of Maryland--College Park (Clark) College Park, MD 2.7
    University of Rochester Rochester, NY 2.7
    44 Brown University Providence, RI 2.6
    Clemson University Clemson, SC 2.6
    SUNY--Stony Brook Stony Brook, NY 2.6
    University of Alabama--Birmingham Birmingham, AL 2.6
    University of California--Los Angeles (Samueli) Los Angeles, CA 2.6
    University of Illinois--Chicago Chicago, IL 2.6
    50 University of Arizona Tucson, AZ 2.5
  • GroovyGeekGroovyGeek Posts: 889Registered User Member
    US News 2009 Graduate Engineering Rankings
    As has been repeated many times, graduate rankings give little indication of the quality of undergraduate education. Graduate rankings can be quantified relatively unambiguously with things such publication record weighted by impact index, amount of external funding secured, etc. However, they are often anti-correlated to quality of undergraduate education, because the best researchers mostly view teaching in general, and undergraduate teaching in particular, as a necessary evil, the *****ty part of the job to be done just well enough.

    To the OP: given your description of the situation, I am not even sure why CMU is still in the running for you. If you want to double-major or minor in business, the requirements of the CMU program ought to be a deal breaker.

    UCLA vs USC: cost as an OOS is quite comparable, particularly if you are not getting FA. Your message implies that cost is a "don't care" item for you, so you have to choose based on other factors. Once again I am puzzled why this decision is not relatively easy, since you explicitly state you want to do a business minor/double major. Perhaps campus location could be somewhat of a factor, particularly since you can afford to pay rent in Westwood :D You should also look into whether Econ is an impacted major at UCLA, in a school that size getting into an impacted major can be quite a struggle.

    JHU: can't give you advice there. Don't know anything about the school other than the med school.

    P.S. I am curious if you are so big on biotech and love Cali climate you did not apply to UCSD.
  • mdcisspmdcissp Posts: 2,494Registered User Senior Member
    Were you accepted into both biomed engineering and Tepper business school at CMU? If not, it can be hard to transfer into different schools at CMU. Marshall Business and Viterbi Engineering are both excellent-were you accepted into the combined CS and Business major at Viterbi? JHU has an excellent biomed program but, like Pittsburgh, make sure you want to be in Baltimore. USC has small classes.Westwood is a very nice area, but the classes at UCLA are very large.
  • cynicalowlcynicalowl Posts: 220Registered User Junior Member
    Out of curiosity, what financial aid did USC give you?
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