Am I safe with these schools?

<p>I want to get my MS electrical engineering, and I need to do it in the DC/Maryland area. So, I am definitely applying to the following three schools:</p>

<p>Hopkins, UMD College Park, and George Washington.</p>

<p>I originally thought about applying to George Mason U as a safety, but I'm wondering if I can get away with not doing so. I figure that if I don't get accepted to the above 3, I can just wait a year and try again. Hopkins is my top choice.</p>

<p>Also, how do I make it clear to these schools that I am going to live in Maryland? My address on all the applications is currently in CA. I got a job in Maryland, so I'm moving in February. I don't want them to think I am applying to them among a bunch of schools all over the country. Should I mention this in my personal statement?</p>

<p>I graduated with a 3.67 gpa from Northwestern University, electrical engineering. I just took the GRE and I got 640 verbal, 750 quant. I don't have the writing score yet. I've also done 3 quarters of independent study and research. I have 2 LORs from my independent study advisers which should be pretty good. A 3rd LOR from a teacher who I took 3 classes with (included a graduate level course), which will probably be somewhat generic since he doesn't know me as well as the other teachers.</p>

<p>So, should I feel safe that I'll get into one of those 3 schools? If I get rejected by all three, will my chances improve if I apply again in a year? I'd prefer to apply again in a year instead of going to GMU as a safety this year. In fact, if I get rejected by Hopkins and UMD, I don't even know if I'd go to George Washington. I really want Hopkins or UMD, even if it takes 2 years to get in.</p>

<p>Any advice is appreciated!</p>