MS in civil engineering

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Discus: College Search and Selection: August 2004 Archive: MS in civil engineering
By Dionjuan2004 (Dionjuan2004) on Sunday, August 01, 2004 - 07:23 am: Edit

i've got GRE score of 1490 (700V, 790M), toefl score of 270, my GPA is 8.16/10, i've published 4 research papers in indian(i'm frm india) journals and am in the final year of my graduation in civil from IIT.
can someone gimme an idea where should i apply for masters - i mean which university, i have absolutely no concern abt its location or anything else (but yeah i'll need F.Aid) as long as it can fetch me a decent job after MS.


By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Sunday, August 01, 2004 - 07:52 am: Edit

You are better off applying to a PhD program. You can leave the program at anytime if you wish, but at least you will be given a TA or RA position by most of the top programs. That means you pay no tution and the university pays you a small stipend ($20,000/annum) with which to live. The schools I recommend for Civil Engineering are:

Illinois-Urbana Champaign
Georgia Tech
Michigan-Ann Arbor (my uncle is a top faculty member in the Civil Engineering Faculty, I can put in a good word for you! hehe)
Cal Tech
Purdue-West Lafayette

By Thekev (Thekev) on Sunday, August 01, 2004 - 07:09 pm: Edit

UT-Austin-My uncle is a top prof of this highly rated schools CE program

What a coincidence!

By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Sunday, August 01, 2004 - 11:35 pm: Edit

Yeah, but Thekev, my uncle is better than your uncle! LOL

DionJuan, seriously let us know if you apply to Michigan or Texas. I speak to my uncle often and I will mention your name. Maybe Thekev can do the same. It cannot hurt.

By Thekev (Thekev) on Monday, August 02, 2004 - 01:13 am: Edit

Yeah ditto. Seriously let me know if you want some contact info.

By Dionjuan2004 (Dionjuan2004) on Monday, August 02, 2004 - 01:31 pm: Edit

Thanks Thekev and Alexandre, i've heard so much abt both austin and michigan and it's really nice of u ppl to have offered me ur help.
But before that tell me should i go for masters or Phd, all i want is a job with decent money...

I think Phd will gimme a better chance but it takes 5 years!! and how likely am i to get such a job with masters? what should i do??

By Madelinemay11 (Madelinemay11) on Monday, August 02, 2004 - 02:36 pm: Edit

Dionjuan2004, most people from IIT apply to the top schools in the US and usually end up at MIT, Stanford, Berkeley, Cornell and Caltech (usually reaches for everyone)

Private universities will give you more aid as an international, and are generally more prestigious over here as well as abroad (Berkeley is an exception). You should also try applying to some public schools to increase the number of match schools; Georgia Tech, Purdue, University of Michigan Ann Arbor+Dearborn, UIUC, UT Austin.

Don't use the USNews engineering rankings to figure out how well a university is perceived in the US. The most telling rankings are the undergrad, combined with the rankings for ALL grad programs. e.g. although GIT is ranked very high in engineering, it is very easy to get into at the undergrad level, and it is ranked poorly in other things such as medicine. Ivies +s/m are usually ranked top 10 across the board, and have much more leverage than GIT in the US.

BTW, don't apply for a PhD if you're going for an masters! The competition is tougher (since there are far less spots), and you can easily get rejected from all Ivies +sm + top20. Applying for a masters will help you get into the best school that you can get into.

Civilengineers have to take several exams such as the EIT and PE before they can get a license...most of them end up working for state transportation departments, or as general contractors. Getting a PE license will get you much more of a salary boost than a PhD...most civils have a BS degree, so a masters degree will be more than enough. There's no extra money as a PhD.

By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Tuesday, August 03, 2004 - 02:39 am: Edit

Madelinemay, I would comment on a couple of points:

1) Michigan-Dearborn does not really have a graduate program in Engineering.

2) Overall undergraduate rankings and Engineering graduate rankings are not to be mixed. It is far better to get a degree in Civil Engineering from UIUC than it is to get it from Yale or Harvard.

3) Foreign students enrolled in MS programs don't usually get much in terms of money. It is indeed harder to get into a PhD program, but the odds of getting a TA or RA position are greatly improved. Besides, he also has greater flexibility that way. Given his scores, I think he stands a good chance.

4) Private universities are indeed more prestigious, but several state universities are just as prestigious. You mentioned Cal-Berkeley, which is as prestigious as any school in the US except maybe H,P and Y. But you fail to mention several others. Michigan-Ann Arbor, for example, is as prestigious as any university in the country with the exception of H,P,Y,M and S. UVA is also pretty prestigious, and UNC-Chapel Hill, UCIC, UTA and Wisconsin-Madison are as respected as any non-top 15 private university.

5) You seem to imply that Michigan-Ann Arbor, UIUC and Purdue are matches. They aren't. Michigan is as selective as Stanford for graduate applicants. They have the same acceptance rate, the same mean GPA and the same GRE averages. Purdue is almost as selective too. UIUC is more selective than all of the above. It is even more selective than MIT and Cal-Berkeley.

6) I agree that prestige is important, but Texas-Austin and UIUC are so highly regarded in Civil Engineering, that they defy the norms, just as UCSD does in Bioengineering.

All this said, I would have to agree with Madelinemay. Your chances are excellent and if you have a choice between prestige and excellence in Civil Engineering, I too would recommend the former...WITHIN REASON. For example, MIT is not as highly regarded as Austin in Civil, but as I mentioned in my initial post, I would recommend you pick MIT over Austin anyway.

By Dionjuan2004 (Dionjuan2004) on Friday, August 06, 2004 - 11:56 pm: Edit

i've finally decided upon MS and now the problem is: where to apply?? i dont mean to ask top colleges but just the types that i'm likely to get admission in. is there any way i get to know the GPA and GRE scores of students admitted this year to atleast few of the colleges??

finally how do u rate my chances of getting into MIT out of say 10 (my cousin went there and she seems obsessed with it).please help.

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