Does your undergrad matter for Computer Science?

Everyone says Computer Science is an impacted major, and I am not confident I can get into a top university ( like ivy league). Would I have less opportunity for a prestigious grad school and future career if I go to a decent or average school? Has anyone gone to a decent undergrad school and still have been successful in computer science?? I feel like its stupid I’m picking this major because all of my extracuriculars are more public speaking/ politic related. So it really doesn’t match… but computer science is honestly what I want to do.

Where you go to college for a CS degree isn’t that important. The great majority of (American) programmers I worked with went to public state universities, or good, but hardly elite, private universities. What matters is what you know and how well you can work with others.

There’s no need to go to graduate school to get a good job. If you ultimately do want to go, you should probably work at least 2 or 3 years first. And when you’re choosing a grad school for CS, you pick one that allows you to study an topic you’re interested in rather than choosing based on prestige.

Completely agree with the above information.

Only 1 Ivy league school is listed in the top 10 for CS.

@Gumbymom well, it is actually two.

@Eeyore123: Sorry missed Cornell, so Princeton and Cornell but just making the point that an Ivy League school is not necessary for CS.

Thank you.

Yes, I went to a regional state university, and I’m doing fine in my career. So did my dad and my brother, and they’re both successful. In fact, in my last job search, I interviewed at Amazon, Google, USAA, Stanford, and Univ of KY to name a few. I ended up taking a job with the state, because of the job stability.

Don’t worry about prestige, because it doesn’t matter, I promise. The only reason east/west coast schools have high starting salaries is because they’re in high cost regions. If you adjust for inflation, the entry level salary ends up being the same or even worse. Computers and tech is driven entirely on practical hands-on experience. After 3 years experience, employers don’t even ask where you went to school.

Just make sure that the college you choose has an actual CS major (which can be found at many colleges, not just highly selective ones), rather than something with a similar title but is not really CS.

I would extend this to most, if not all, majors. Go to a regional state university and do well, and you are likely to be admitted in to a good grad school if that’s what you want. Your life chances will very likely depend not just on where you went to college, but a whole host of factors, especially debt.

I work in a hot tech space. No one asks where you went to college, but rather what did you do at your last job. I got a history degree at a public university and an MBA later at another public university. I have never been hired in my space based on where I went to college or grad school.

Go to a decent school at the lowest cost. It’s better than being saddled with ridiculous debt.

That’s a ranking of doctoral programs It’s surprising to see Princeton on the top 10 list, considering how small their doctoral CS program is. The ranking appears to be entirely based on a survey among “academics”, asking them to rate the CS program on a scale of 1 to 5. It looks like CMU, MIT, Stanford, and UCB received a perfect 5.0 average.

It’s less important than in fields like finance, but the top CS programs will tend to be more established and have more industry connections and better on-campus recruiting.

Also, many of the best CS programs are actually public universities, and are fantastic from a ROI perspective for in-state students.