I am an international student coming from Serbia and I am finally near the end of this whole process!
with my 800/350 Q/V GRE and 100 TOEFL I got accepted to NYU-Poly and Stevens and am waiting for confirmation from Columbia SEAS for EE Masters program. I visited all 3 campuses over the summer and talked with admission people and professors and each is nice in its own way.
in the end, I got my self in a big dilemma as my choice would be to chose NYU-Poly over Stevens and even ivy league Columbia.
the reason is that I really just want to become and electrical engineer and the financial engineering, business, arts, history and similar are not the thing that I am interested in, and the 'more rounded' knowledge that the ivy league guaranties is not my priority(not because I like being ignorant but because my undergrad education in Serbia was VERY wide and I think that I got quite enough knowledge in those areas). so I want my focus to be on engineering and nothing but engineering :)
the thing that confuses me is that NYU-Poly is on some list, as I read, tier 3 school(which is, I assume, way worse then tier 1 Stevens institute and ivi league Columbia), and as I read, the reason for that is that Poly is very hard school to finish cause of the huge workload O.o well, for me, that would be the good thing! so I want to ask: is it possible that it is easier to finish Columbia then NYU-Poly? in Europe, the harder the school, the better the reputation it has.(I know I am not in Europe anymore, but thats why I need advice on this subject)
I personally dont care about tiers and rankings if the case is that the school ranks worse if it is harder and if you have to study more, because for me it doesnt make much sense. I just want to enter the hardest school that will make me store more knowledge in electrical engineering area than the others, and prepare me the most for the independent life in US, thousands of miles away from home.
before my visit to campuses, my list would be 1. columbia 2. Stevens 3. NYU-Poly and now it seems that Poly came at the first place and I am concerned if I am making a bad decision.
I still didnt make up my mind, even though it may seem that I would prefer to go to Poly. if I am wrong about some of the assumptions that I made, I would appreciate for you to tell me so, as in that case, I would probably chose Columbia over Poly(but for now, I am not sure that would be a good decision for a future engineer).