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MdMom2014MdMom2014 Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
edited December 2013 in College Search & Selection
My son is applying to U of Md College Park (engineering program) but knows it's competitive and is searching for back-up plans. I've heard good things about UMBC, even though it is not his first choice. Any opinions on UMBC Engineering? Yes, we live in Maryland.
Post edited by MdMom2014 on

Replies to: Umbc

  • happymomof1happymomof1 Registered User Posts: 25,531 Senior Member
    Has he paid a visit to UMBC yet? Does he know anyone who is already there, or could his counselor get him the name of a recent grad of his HS who studies/studied there?
  • HopeNorthwesternHopeNorthwestern Registered User Posts: 47 Junior Member
    What is UMBC?
  • SlackerMomMDSlackerMomMD Registered User Posts: 3,094 Senior Member
    UMBC= University of Maryland, Baltimore County

    I've heard good things from parents and students about UMBC. I've never visited so this is all hearsay. Usually the kids are engineering or CS. One mom was impressed with the research and internship opportunities available to her son. Another mom liked the educational support her son receives. The one negative is maybe (because no one mentions it) the lack of social environment? Yet another parent (of a prospective student, not current) expressed surprise at how nice the campus is - I think everyone expects a dreary soulless group of buildings.

    I would schedule a visit and see if your son can meet with professors in his major as well as current students if he doesn't anyone who goes there.

    It's definitely on the list of good in state schools even though it's relatively unknown on the national level.
  • QuotiaQuotia Registered User Posts: 136 Junior Member
    We visited last spring. I don't think my daughter will apply, but I was really impressed with the many opportunities for research, academic support, etc. I didn't know much about the school before our visit, but I think it's a great place, esp for a science-oriented kid.
  • FromMDFromMD Registered User Posts: 746 Member
    S1 (HS08)and S2 (HS12) applied to UMBC as safety but both decided for CP. We didn't visit the school but have heard a lot of good things about it. When boys applied, we found UMBC much more generous with merit aid then CP. I think the biggest hurdle for the kids and the parents (including us) is overcoming the perception of UMBC not being as good as CP. If your kid is hoping for merit aid, apply early.
  • MdMom2014MdMom2014 Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    For some reason, the high school kids don't seem to think the school is 'good enough' but I know several kids attending UMBC and they all speak very highly of it. Hopefully, CP will work out for him as it's definitely his first choice. He wants to apply to Va. Tech, as well. If not, I think he should consider UMBC - at least for a year or two. Thanks so much for your feedback. It is truly appreciated.
  • Rookie56Rookie56 Registered User Posts: 196 Junior Member
    Apply to all 3 colleges: UMDCP, UMBC and VA Tech , waiting for results , you will have more options to make the final decision. All of them have good engineering program, but UMDCP engineering is LEP, more difficult to get in.
  • davenmamedavenmame Registered User Posts: 364 Member
    My son considered UMBC, too - computer engineering. He ended up being torn between UMBC and College Park since as another person has already stated, the scholarships are generally greater than at College Park. My son has interned with kids from UMBC and his opinion is that their computer engineering is not as advanced as that of College Park. They hadn't had classes by their Junior year that he had as a freshman. That being said, it could just be the kids that he interned with. You might want to compare the 2 programs for whatever type of engineering he is interested in. Additionally, I know VA Tech does have a very good reputation, but one POSSIBLE advantage to UMBC over VA Tech MIGHT be their contacts with DOD and other contractors. Perhaps someone from VA Tech could dispute this as I want to be clear that I don't know this for certain; it's just a thought. I think you are being wise in having a backup plan in the event your son does not get into College Park at first. From what I hear it is getting more and more competitive every year. Good Luck!
  • JoblueJoblue Registered User Posts: 1,180 Senior Member
    UMDCP is getting much harder to get in but I'm surprised more people aren't aware of UMBC, since 60 Minutes did that very positive story about the school and it's president. When my DS was considering an engineering major his MC advisor (engineering graduate of MIT, retired after a long successful career, if that matters to anyone) felt strongly that the program at UMBC was superior to the one at UMDCP.

    My son decided to do something else but I continue to hear very positive things about UMBC and it has been #1 in the up and coming universities list in USNWR (if that matters to anyone).
  • proudmom1313proudmom1313 Registered User Posts: 116 Junior Member
    UMBC is amazing. My son has had an excellent experience. Received a paid internship over the summer as a Freshman! Great individual attention. can't say enough positive about the school. He was also accepted to Virginia Tech, College Park....among others....and is so happy he is @ UMBC!
  • ccechakccechak Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    My daughter was accepted in Computer Engineering at UMBC and only accepted with a Letter of Science to College Park which we were surrprised. She has 1960 SAT, and 4.3 and 7th in her class. She was heart broken bc CP was ranked so much higher for Computer Engineering than UMBC. I guess my biggest concern is the internship opportunities and college fair job recruitments. Does anyone know how UMBC equates?. In the end I just want her to be able to have competitive employment opportunities?
  • ANNE1389ANNE1389 Registered User Posts: 220 Junior Member
    My husband said there are many internship opportunities at both UMCP and UMBC. My son has been really impressed by the professors at UMBC...he has not made a decision about schools yet, but he likes UMBC much better than College Park. He was admitted to both schools in the Honors College and we have received a VERY generous amount of money from UMBC, but we are waiting on other schools. I think it is a personal choice. My son likes the personal attention he would get at UMBC as it is a much smaller school. He also knows many kids that are there and are happy.

    I went to College Park and that is a great school for many people. It is a typical college town with many opportunities. The classes for freshman were very large (I was not in the Honors college) and you easily became a number until closer to Junior year. Some kids love the climate there and some kids don't.

    ccechak - to answer your question about competitive employment opportunities, my husband said that UMBC computer science program is well-respected with NSA, Northrop Grumman, etc. in this area. I am not sure what is thought outside of MD.

    The one thing I am concerned with is the location. It is a fairly small campus very little surrounding it. Without a car, I think it would become "boring" after a while.
  • ccechakccechak Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Thank you for your information. I was surprised she wasn't accepted into UMD. SHe was heartbroken. She is not interested in RIT nor Cornell. SHe feels like UMBC is a good fit for her.
  • JoblueJoblue Registered User Posts: 1,180 Senior Member
    I'm sorry about your daughter's disappointment but confused about the "accepted with a Letter of Science" to UMDCP. What does that mean? Was she accepted to the school but not the major?
  • ccechakccechak Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Yes. She almost didn't notice that written at the bottom of her acceptance letter. She called and they said that she she will need to take a year of courses and then apply into computer engineering program. Like I said, she has 4.3 and is 7 out of 590 in her class. She thinks because she only scored 600 on her Rdg SAT ( 740 on Math and total of 1960 overall...) she was selected for UMD. She is also involved in many school govt actiivites. Never thought she wouldn't get in, I guess it scares me that this program me is so competitive. Now, Because she was waiting for other colleges to send letters, she decided to select UMBC because its not worth the risk of losing out the scholarship $ she is receiving. Unfortunately, this is one of the schools she didn't bother applying for Honors college bc she wasn't sure she wanted to go there so now she missed out on that opportunity as well I guess. Just feel like she worked so hard and now she is behind the "eight ball.: Oh well... I guess it will all work out.
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