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Computer Science: USC vs Pomona College

pancepartypanceparty 29 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 35 Junior Member
Recently accepted to both...

Pomona CS
- BA degree (apparently this doesn't effect employability...)
- great for student-professor interaction and help, professors care about your success
- class size is relatively small, but apparently overcrowded for the introductory courses
- HM offers advanced courses (the Claremont University Consortium seems to be on par with USC's offerings)
- less name recognition at companies, better at graduate programs, prepares students for graduate study, rather than industry

- BS degree
- many majors, hard to talk to professors or know them, but there are TAs
- classes are both large, and difficult to get into
- has some more advanced courses
- greater name recognition, better employability immediately after graduation

Please post any relevant information. Hopefully current PC or USC CS students...

Right now I'm leaning toward Pomona. I'm a transfer student, so I need to make sure I can graduate on time despite losing credits in the transfer process, and it seems that is far more feasible at Pomona.
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Replies to: Computer Science: USC vs Pomona College

  • simba9simba9 3241 replies20 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 3,261 Senior Member
    If you're leaning toward Pomona, just go there. For undergraduate CS, unless there's a particular specialist track you're interested in, what you're taught at one school won't be much different than what you're taught at another.

    Most undergrad CS programs prepare students for graduate school rather than industry, which is a reflection of the personal interests of CS professors. That's long been a complaint of businesses in need of computer science grads.
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  • psydentpsydent 303 replies4 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 307 Member
    If you want to go to grad school, do research, or be in more of a theory field, then go Pomona.
    If you want to go into industry, then go USC.

    If I was reviewing a resume and it said BA in Comp Sci, I'd rank it lower than a BS. If you have something on your resume that captures me, like a really interesting project/portfolio piece, then I'd rank it higher. When it comes to actually interviewing (my hiring manager decides to give you an interview), then seeing your knowledge of the fundamentals, approach to problems, experience, etc. is the most important thing. If you excel at that we don't even care about your degree anymore.

    Getting into CS classes at USC was not a problem when I was there, but it may have changed. A current student could provide a better perspective.

    For either school: Get in touch with someone in each Admissions and in the Engineering school and see if your transfer situation (credits) can be improved. I've heard at Viterbi, sometimes there's not an articulation agreement, but if you explain the course can get credit for taking the corresponding course.
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  • SeattleTWSeattleTW 1109 replies37 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,146 Senior Member
    One factor is weather: the air quality in the inland empire is much different than in downtown L.A., and by that I mean the smog levels are higher at Pomona and the other Claremont colleges than just about any other top school in America. The beach is only 17 miles from USC, vs. 50 miles from Pomona.
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