Purdue (Data Science) vs. Santa Clara University (Finance) vs. ASU (Computer Science) vs. Cal Poly Pomona (Computer Science)

hi! i was accepted to the following schools:

  1. Purdue for Data Science
  2. Santa Clara University for Finance
  3. Arizona State University for Computer Science
  4. Cal Poly Pomona for Computer Science

and I would appreciate any help/advice about the schools or which I should choose :slight_smile: I’m planning on double majoring in college in Data Science and Finance, and if time permits to do a Pre-Law track. So no matter what college I choose to go to, I will be adding my second major. I’m leaning towards Purdue or SCU so I’ll add that information below, but if you think I should be considering the other colleges as well, let me know (any input is appreciated so so much!).

Price is not a heavy factor in my decision, but for reference SCU is 60k with scholarship, Purdue is 43k. US News says that Purdue and SCU are both tied at #53 nationally too!

Personally, I love that SCU has a much smaller class size, which helps me make one on one connections with my professor which might be beneficial when I apply for my Master’s or JD degree. SCU is also less than an hour away from my home, but location is not a big factor for me (and I always kind of wanted to go out of state). SCU’s location is also a huge advantage since it’s located in the Silicon Valley which may make it easier for me to land a tech or finance job, compared to the other schools I was accepted into. I know some local companies prefer to hire locally, and finding a job after my four years is a huge aspect I am considering. While I’m not 100% sure how easy SCU classes are, I’m pretty confident that I can get a much better GPA at SCU than Purdue which may make me more competitive for Grad/Law School.

For Purdue, in my opinion, since the school is much larger, I think it would definitely be harder for me to find internship/research opportunities on campus with so much competition, and it would also be harder for me to stand out in classes with more people (which may hurt my letter of recs/GPA on grad/law school applications). But, Purdue also has a more influential name (i think but may be wrong) when it comes to national colleges. Since Purdue may look better on my resume, I was considering it over SCU. Purdue is also 1 hour from Indianapolis and 3 hours from Chicago, so finding a job may be less easy than SCU.

-SCU has a small class size, good alumni, easier for me to get a higher GPA, can receive more individual attention from professors which will shine on my master’s/law school application
-Purdue has a more respected name, more research opportunities and clubs on campus, is out-of-state, cheaper by 15k (which is not a big deal to my family), and is more geared towards tech careers and programs

any help/comments is greatly appreciated! Thank you so much :smile:

I’m a Purdue parent of a junior in engineering. Purdue has an amazing career center, one of the largest job fairs in the country, and an incredibly well supported internship and coop programs. My D has worked at Purdue and then in GA, now OH, and this summer in Eastern PA. You will not be restricted to looking for jobs in IN or the Midwest. I would recommend looking at the first destination survey for your major.

My D has had no problems making connections with professors and even first year she had a few classes with only 25 students. All the large classes also have small group recitations and profs are accessible and eager to help and meet.

The only concern you listed that could be valid is about GPA, but data science is going to be tough anywhere. You can look up the grade distribution for first year courses and see if there is a significant difference.

Good luck with your decision!

I am not sure why you think that one school would give you an advantage in a higher GPA than the other. Often students are mistaken about such assumptions. Thus it is better to look at factors that are important to you such as student/faculty ratio, location and the particular program you have been accepted into.

On another note, if you have dreams of law school I’d put cal poly back on your list. The school has a fabulous political science department.

The nice thing about “pre-law” is that there’s really no such thing. You can major in literally anything you want, and law schools love people with business, accounting, and technical degrees. There are areas where those skills are in high demand.

Research is only useful is you plan to go into academics. In the working world, it’s just bullet point on a resume employers gloss over and ignore. Employers want to know how proficient you can code.

For job prospects, employers recruit heavily from both schools. You won’t have trouble finding a job. Additionally, the cost of living in the midwest is much lower than California, which gives you much more purchasing power than Silicon Valley…something to think about. For instance, you could land a salary of $75k from Purdue (could be higher or lower depending on the market). With a few thousand dollars down, that could easily buy a middle-class house and a car payment for a growing family.