Hi. My son is a UCLA senior (Biology major) who got accepted several months ago into Boston University's LEAP masters in mechanical engineering program for non-engineering undergrads and paid a $500 deposit. (My sons is taking UCLA summer school and will actually graduate UCLA this summer.) He was accepted into BU's "Product Design and Manufacturing" specialty. The first year, he is scheduled to take BU engineering undergrad classes and the second year, he would complete a one-year masters in MecEng program. BU gave him a scholarship of $14,000 off tuition, which means each year at BU would cost $40,000 in tuition.
BUT, my son just got accepted (after being previously rejected!) into the Biomed Engineering masters program at UC Irvine! Wow! We are California residents, so the tuition difference is remarkable. One year of tuition at UCI will cost less than $12,000.
He seems stunned and torn. (My son has a good friend who went to BU as an undergrad who has been talking up how fun Boston is. Ironically, whether he goes to BU or UCI, he will live at home and take classes remotely due to the pandemic.)
To me, I am selfishly hoping my son will decide to attend UC Irvine because of the pocketbook differential, but we would support him going to either place. The UCI masters in engineering program is two years long and requires original research with a thesis the second year, so it seems like more of a robust and academic degree to me. Is that true?
What are some pros and cons about each program? Am seeking any commentary or tidbits of information that y'all might be able to contribute about BU's masters versus ICI's program.
Here's a final consideration, my son says, if he does really well academically in his master's program, he might want to go to medical school after that. Which master's program would give him the best odds of coming out with a high graduate GPA? (My son was the salutatorian in high school, with a 4.44 high school GPA, but he had too much fun at UCLA as an undergrad and has a 3.2 undergrad GPA. To get into medical school, he would need to repair his academic record with a sparkling graduate GPA.)