Originally Posted by superman22x
How are the girls at GT?
he'll be studying engineering, so the girls will be somewhere between butch lesbian and non-existent...
from my own experience on universities.
There are both good and bad universities, these are largely dictated by the kinds of people that go there, i.e if the entry requirements aren't great then you're not going to get as greater students, the lecturers aren't going to be as good as they are at a better university. the professors aren't going to be doing as much research and hence the institution won't be getting as much money. (I'll come back to this later).
When I was looking at universities, I visited a certain uni and thought that it was frankly terrible, on the open day they had final year students setting up equipment as final year projects that I felt I'd done a better job of doing at GCSE level, (I studied electronics at 3 different levels GCSE = 15 - 16, A level = 16 - 18, university degree 18 - 21). this wasn't a particularly highly ranked university that I visited, there were 21 year old final year students setting up simple amplifiers that I'd covered in the first years of GCSE when I was 15.
needless to say, I didn't go there... their course material, or at least what I could see in a couple of hours during the tour didn't seem all that much -based on what I could see of what people were doing, their facilities weren't great -roughly equal to what we'd had in secondary school/college (GCSE/Alevel years -which I did at the same school).
I took a tour of a different university, a better graded university, and their resources were frankly epic in comparison, I decided that I wanted to go there.
I started at a uni based on the cost, I had signed up to study electronics but since applying for that course I had won a sponsorship from the BBC to study broadcast technology at the university. the sponsorship would have paid all my tuition fee's. I (of course) took that opportunity with both hands.
the institution was great, the course tutors seemed great, the only thing that let the place down was the uni's accommodation, (which was in a different town so I had to take a bus), and the city in general which I did not like. I couldn't see myself staying the course over three years in a relative amount of misery. so I left, (within the first couple of weeks).
I applied to a different university for a transfer immediately so that I wouldn't miss a year, and thankfully ended up at a different university, my degree carries the same amount of respect from the place I ended up as it would have done if I'd have stayed at that place but the main thing is that I did finish the course. and I was happy whilst I did it. I have a degree, and that has opened doors for me in terms of jobs that I have had.
coming back to the funding.
the university that I ended up going to was a middle of the road university, the entry requirements were middle of the road, the students were middle of the road, their funding and equipment therefore was also middle of the road. at the time I looked at the equipment that they had there and it all seemed quite cool.
since leaving university I ended up working in IT at a different university, one that was a good university, ranked #2 in the country for the particular department that I worked in, the equipment that they had compared to the university that I'd studied at was just a world of difference. it really put the place that I'd went to to shame.
So there are four things that I'm trying to say here,
1, if you'll be studying at a middle of the road university, it doesn't matter what university you study at.
if you can say you studied at MIT, people will instantly listen, because the place is famous and well respected.
if you're saying the difference between middle of the road A and middle of the road B, then don't bother wondering what is best when ones rated 50th best and the other is 55th best, it just won't make a difference to any employer. the difference in wage is likely a difference in the educational surroundings industry links, or just the 'kind' of student that they get there. -i.e how aspirational the students are.
2, rather than worrying about grading, actually go to the places (on an open day tour if possible) this will let you see what the place is like, how far from home it is, how easy it is to get to, what the buildings are like, (are they new and shiny or old and falling apart). it'll let you see what the equipment is like. basically are you using nice new stuff that actually has a chance of being relevant to your intended career or are you using old stuff that it looks like they might have picked up on ebay! that you'll never see in industry because it's just so old and obsolete.
what are the wall displays of work like? or any work that's out do you understand it?
Any work that's displayed is displayed (as a wall display) is displayed because it's considered good there, does it look like a professional highly educated person put it there or like a child did it in an arts and crafts lesson? that should give you an indication of the kind of education that you'll be getting there.
3, consider your surroundings, regardless of how much you get funded, you'll still want more money, so will you want to go to a place where the campus is in a small town and there are few jobs about or in a larger city where there are more jobs to be had?
will you be happy in a small town if you're used to a big city. (what do you mean there are places that don't have 24 hour bars and convenience stores?!)
indeed will you be happy in a big city if you're used to a small town? (you'll be amazed how much you could miss just seeing some green fields, or grass that isn't just covering the centre of road reservations! if that's what you're used to all your life).
you'll be studying a lot, but not all the time, what are the surroundings like, is there just one decent place to go out in the evening, (you'll get very bored of it over the few years you'll be there!), if you're religious can you still attend a church, can you continue your hobbies?
4, the educational experience, your surroundings, the quality of the establishment, the industry links, your ability to work whilst at the college/university (i.e all of the above) matter a lot more than how much it costs.
yes $60k is a lot of money, (a hell of a lot of money). but you shouldn't let that cloud your judgement, you should do what is best for you, what you will be most comfortable with and go to the place where you will receive the best start in life.
at the end of the day, if you just follow the numbers and go to the place that gets you 60k in debt, but you earn 10k more in the first year alone you'll most likely pay off all that debt within six years of graduating anyway. (that's not counting interest, but also not counting the pay rises that you'll likely get over that time).
(if you read this far, well done! -it'll be good practise for the amount of reading that you;re about to embark on!)