I’m looking for a bit of advice regarding how important a strong department at a school vs. the general prestige of the school as a whole. I’ll list some details but do note that I’m aware that a big part of this debate is personal preference on my own part, I’m just looking to see if there’s any objective information to push me one way or the other.
Basically, I’m debating between UConn (in state) and UMinnestoa (OOS). Both would be similarly priced (UConn would be a few thousand cheaper but they’re both affordable with no debt for me) and I’ve gotten into my intended major of CS for both. From what I’ve seen they are fairly comparable schools, with both being considered “public ivies”, although UConn seems to have a small bit more prestige. It appears UMinnesota has a slightly stronger CS department, however and does a bit more research in the field. While I know all college rankings are flawed, Forbes, which seems the most accurate of the bunch, has UConn rated at 70 vs UMN’s 84 rank, plus UConn seems to be more selective with their admissions. Like I said, this probably is mostly up to how far I want to go for school but any help is appreciated. Thanks!
A bit cheaper
More selective/prestigious (not sure how much this matters)
Some friends attending
Smaller class sizes
Better CS Department (Focus on AI which is something I’m interested in)
Better job market in area
I am a fan of Minnesota and Minneapolis has a good job market for tech, but the four biggest tech markets, by far, and especially for small companies, are San Francisco/Bay Area, New York City, Boston, and Los Angeles.
San Francisco/San Jose is still the 800 pound gorilla of tech investment. New York at #2 and Boston at #3 are both very big. Minneapolis/St. Paul is not in the Top 20. UConn is 75 minutes from Boston and 3 hours from NYC, with about half the population of Connecticut living in the NYC metro area. A lot of the best tech jobs are with small companies, and those companies generally don’t range far to find employees. I think you want to be where the action is.
Interesting, didn’t realize that but at least “Students who have completed the necessary technical courses and have a 3.2 or above technical GPA* at the end of fall semester will be guaranteed admission to that major”. Weird how they have you declare intended major in the application but that could be just for admitting you into the college
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