I am entering Electrical Engineering studies, down to three probable choices, but leaning towards UCF or the bridge program to UF. As a 9th grader, I was struck by both the engineering projects and overall campus feel of Orlando’s UCF and felt it was my #1 choice. I was not impressed by UF and strongly disliked both the dorms and campus. Unfortunately, I did not see much of the Engineering department. USF didn’t strike me much either although I greatly enjoyed the Engineering Expo as a child for several years. Since then, I have done much research on each of these Universities and found them to be very promising, applied to them, and have been invited to all of the above. Due to the pandemic, there are no live tours. Now that I am older I think that I’d view the Universities in a different light (if I had the chance to tour in person).
The State College of Florida has partnered with UF to allow students who would have been admitted to UF (had there been more room for engineering underclassmen in their courses and campus) to attend their college. After 1 semester, provided critical tracking pre-engineering courses are passed, students become 100% UF gators and gain full access to UF resources and amenities. They continue to take the critical tracking courses for 1-2 semesters at the state college as UF students, then are promoted to the UF campus full time into the college of engineering (no transfer or applying to engineering as with other universities). The only caveat is that if you choose to change majors it MUST be within the list of Engineering (CSE, DAS, CPE, EE, AE, or ME) and if a student does not meet the critical tracking requirements or changes major altogether, you lose all priveledges to become a UF student and are pretty much back to square one. I also don’t own a car (and buses don’t come out to my area) which would make it challenging to get to school regularly, but I can make it work if push comes to shove. UF is #1 in the state and high ranking overall in the nation which makes me think this may be good in the long run. The name alone stands strong and the average starting salary for UF grads is significantly higher than graduating from another in-state uni.
Both UCF and USF have admitted me as an official university student majoring in EE but under the condition, I begin summer B of 2021. Both of these schools have great reputations. USF ranks slightly higher (and I have a sibling studying Chemistry there) but UCF seems to have very strong internships and large entities funding their school with great internship and job connections.
Any insight would be greatly appreciated - I need to pay my deposit preferably before May 1, 2021, and possibly choose on-campus housing ASAP (for the UCF or USF).