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anoop66's avatar

I have got admits in MS CSE Fall 2010 program at USC, Univ. of Florida and SUNY Buffalo. Help me choose?

Asked by anoop66 (899points) April 9th, 2010

I am an Indian and have completed my undergraduate studies in India. I have got admits in MS CSE Fall 2010 program at University of Southern California (Viterbi), University of Florida and SUNY Buffalo. Can you please help me narrow down my options?

According to US News College rankings:

Rank 7
Awesome College
Very expensive
Job Scene supposed to be great (But not that good, I asked around)

Rank 24
Very Cheap, Getting 50% scholarship
Job Chances poor (Can anyone with first hand experience, comment on this?)

SUNY Buffalo:
Rank 54
Decent Job Chances

I can gather all of this from this site. But can anyone studying in any of these colleges help me? Can anyone tell me what’s their order according to reputation??


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22 Answers

davidbetterman's avatar

USC is located in a particularly nasty section of L.A. As for the others, I dunno…

anoop66's avatar

@davidbetterman Would you please elaborate on the nasty aspect?

davidbetterman's avatar

USC, located near Vermont Ave and Martin Luther King Blvd.

This is south Central L.A. Home of the crips and the bloods (gangs).

Unless things have changed in L.A. quite a lot, this is not a very good neck of the woods.

Have you ever heard of Watts? South Central L.A.? The gangs mentioned above?

anoop66's avatar

@davidbetterman no i havent heard about this. So essentially, the area is not safe..

ETpro's avatar

All three are good schools. I’d be inclined to let the scholarship offer tilt it toward the University of Florida. It has a huge and attractive campus in Gainesville, Florida. While it is in the center of the peninsula, it’s not far from either the Atlantic or the Gulf coasts, if you like beach activity, sailing and fishing.

Wishing you the best in your continuing education.

susanc's avatar

Buffalo isn’t a wonderful city. It became rich and powerful when Niagara Falls first started turning turbines and producing enough electricity to power the hideous mills and foundries and chemical plants of the last century, and ship them across the Great Lakes – but all of that faded away, America has lost its muscle. The city is a little ghostly and poor, and the weather is shockingly bad – heavy windblown snow for six full months of the year. That’s why it’s cheap.
Unless the school has something extraordinary to recommend it, go to Florida. Unless you’re from the Himalayas, the weather there will feel more normal to you. (And to me!)

davidbetterman's avatar


USC is an excellent school, with a fantastic football team (at least when OJ played there). However, it is a ghetto area.

It is like an island of wealthy folks’ children surrounded by a sea of gtangtahs and stricken drug dealers.

I believe Florida may be slightly better.

punkrockworld's avatar

My friends go to USC and honestly it’s all show.. if you care for that “status” I would say go for it.. but you’re basically paying for your degree. Job opportunities through the Alumni association are great but you will get opportunities anywhere if you are good at what you do.
Hands down, USC is a great university.. I think I’m just bitter because I did not get in :)

thriftymaid's avatar

University of Florida, hands down. Gainsville is a great college town, great sports, and if you are a partier—they are number one. As far as job prospects, their students get first tabs on jobs in Florida. My nephew’s girlfriend is graduating in May and has landed her dream job.

tedibear's avatar

I think it depends on whether you prefer earthquakes, hurricanes or blizzards.

Seriously, I would try to do more research on each of the schools to see if they have everything you want.

janbb's avatar

I don’t know USC at all; both SUNY Buffalo and University of Florida are decent, not top notch, schools. I don’t know about how they are in your field. I would concur that the climate in Buffalo is very grim; I was there for a week in January once when there was 2 feet of old snow on the gorund and the temperature didn’t get above 5 degrees Fahrenheit all week. When you say job chances, do you mean part time employment while at school or placement afterwards?

ZAGWRITER's avatar

5 degrees Fahrenheit? In Fairbanks, they call that spring. You’ll be fine.

mrrich724's avatar

Do NOT go anywhere near Los Angeles. It is the drain of America. Go to Florida, I’ve been to their campus. It’s beautiful and it’s a great college town. I don’t have any experience with SUNY.

SuperMouse's avatar

@davidbetterman is correct when he says that USC is in a really bad part of Los Angeles. However, the alumni I know say that living on campus one is fairly insulated from that aspect of the place. Job prospects in LA might be good, but you will need to make a lot of money to be able to live there comfortably.

As far as I’m concerned the main drawback of SUNY Buffalo is that it is in Buffalo. It is not a bad place (I have visited but never lived there), but their weather consists of nine months of blizzards and three months of bad sledding. Blech! I know little to nothing about the University of Florida, but I find Florida to be an extremely frightening place.

@anoop66 I go to a school in the midwest with several students from India. A close friend who just finished her graduate degree here had a very difficult time adjusting to the climate. Just something to consider…

I know very little about the academics of any of these institutions except to know they all have excellent reputations.

msbauer's avatar

UF! i have no idea about job prospects but the school’s a great one and the weather even better! it’s a gorgeous day down here in florida :)

tedibear's avatar

For the record, Buffalo has anywhere from 3 to 5 months of actual winter. (Snowy, windy & cold) Otherwise, it has four fairly distinct seasons. Fall, winter, spring and road work. Sorry, bad native joke. The other comments about the city being a bit ghostly, that’s true. There’s not much there in terms of economic growth. Something to note, and you can decide whether it’s positive or negative, is that the SUNY system is going through more budget cuts. The professors are kvetching because they’re going to have to teach instead of having T.A.‘s so that they (the profs) can do “research.”

Shuttle128's avatar

University of Florida is probably your best bet of the three. It’s a very big state college in Gainesville, Florida which is fairly nice (I’ve been there). UF is pretty well funded as it’s one of the biggest colleges in Florida. Florida weather is probably closest to what you’re used to as well. The curriculum might be better at USC though. I can’t really speak for either.

Truthfully I’m going to have to plug Georgia Tech for Computer Engineering, but seeing how that’s not on your list UF or USC are probably the best as far as funding and recognition. They’ll be easiest to get jobs holding a diploma from either. I have several engineering friends from UF (though not CSE) and they enjoyed it just fine and got jobs fairly easily.

ETpro's avatar

@davidbetterman The UF Gators are certainly a decent football team as well their record:

◘    2008 National
◘    2008 SEC
◘    2006 National
◘    2006 SEC
◘    2000 SEC
◘    1996 National
◘    1996 SEC
◘    1995 SEC
◘    1994 SEC
◘    1993 SEC
◘    1991 SEC

anoop66's avatar

Wow, thanks a lot all you guys for your helpful answers.

My first preference is USC if I can manage the financial aspect (awfully expensive)
So, my second choice should be UFL huh? Apart from buffalo not being a good city and really chilly :), the grad school should be reputed right, cos its the State University?

janbb's avatar

Yes, I think the UB grad school should have a decent rep.

john65pennington's avatar

Gangs are in L.A. and New York. you might not receive your degree.

For safety sake, i would select Florida. you will enjoy the warm sunshine and great weather. earn your degree. the sky is the limit anywhere you choose. you do not have to stay in Florida. find the big bucks job and go for it.

sacred's avatar

What a load of garbage I’ve been reading on this thread!

First: USC has 11 national championships which is the same number of U-Florida conference and national championships combined. USC has won 38 conference championships with 24 Rose Bowl victories has the most players drafted into the NFL, most players drafted into the NFL in the first round, and the most players in the NFL football hall of fame.

Second: It’s so frustrating listening to all of these people who have never even been to Los Angeles, let alone USC, talk about how dangerous the area is when they have no idea what they are talking about. The area is undergoing a dramatic revitalization with tons of multifamily construction new metro links, and the expansion of a massive university village. For all of the talk of how dangerous it is USC isn’t even in the top 50 for crimes. Here’s some ACTUAL DATA to back up that claim:

Third: USC is so far above and beyond Florida in terms of academic reputation – ESPECIALLY in engineering that this entire conversation is absurd. Further, it continues to advance in endowment, student selectivity, and the rankings in a factually unprecedented way. No one has ever risen further, or faster, than USC and with their new $7B campaign ($500MM of which will go to Viterbi) they are only going to continue to rise with improved resources, facilities, scholarships, and faculty. To choose UF over USC would be incredibly foolish and shortsighted.

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