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Help Me Choose Where To Go For Undergrad

Hey there, Quantnet!
Alright so I'm almost through getting my college decisions. Now, help me choose where to go :D

Baruch Macalulay (Full-Ride) - So about 10-15k a year.
University of Maryland Scholars (8k/year Presidential Scholarship) So about 0-12k a year (0 if I choose to live at home) - Accepted to the LEP Finance at the Business school; can transfer/double/triple major at Computer Science and Mathematics
Carnegie Mellon-Tepper (Don't know if I'm getting accepted/finaid but guessing - say 10k a year) about 45k (!) a year
Carnegie Mellon-Math at Mellon College of Science - 45k a year

I can afford maybe 5k a year from my own pocket; parents can afford 10k easily, 15k with some effort, and 20k with arduous effort. So assume that parents provide 15k, for a total of 20k EFC.

Given cost, where should I go/major in? I'm not necessarily interested in a quant career; I love finance in general - quant finance just seems more interesting than IBD.
 

roni

Cornell FE
Even though as a Baruch Macaulay you get full scholarship (don't you?), it's not worth it. The level of the classes is very low especially the classes in Zicklin (even in the honors classes). The only classes that you see higher levels in are in the math/science classes.
As far as recruiting is concerned, companies do come to hire students on campus and Macaulay students have some kind of preference, it's still hard to get a job through college. You will need to work your way up (start doing internships as soon as possible).

Tepper is a very reputable school but not cheap if you don't get any scholarships.
 
Even though as a Baruch Macaulay you get full scholarship (don't you?), it's not worth it. The level of the classes is very low especially the classes in Zicklin (even in the honors classes). The only classes that you see higher levels in are in the math/science classes.
As far as recruiting is concerned, companies do come to hire students on campus and Macaulay students have some kind of preference, it's still hard to get a job through college. You will need to work your way up (start doing internships as soon as possible).

Tepper is a very reputable school but not cheap if you don't get any scholarships.
Nothing I don't know =|

As for full scholarship, I do, but it doesn't cover room/board.
 
Undergrad is most important phase of education..it will make a lot diff in terms of where you end...If I were you, I would try to pick up the top rated school...and you being American Citizen as it appears...there are federal loans you can take(ofcourse you know it)...plus I would also try to transfer to Harvard/Princeton/MIT after couple of semester if I could not make it right away...just my 2 cents
 

roni

Cornell FE
Undergrad is most important phase of education..it will make a lot diff in terms of where you end...If I were you, I would try to pick up the top rated school...and you being American Citizen as it appears...there are federal loans you can take(ofcourse you know it)...plus I would also try to transfer to Harvard/Princeton/MIT after couple of semester if I could not make it right away...just my 2 cents
Transferring to a top school after a few semesters is a very good idea. I know of 2 dudes who transfered to Columbia and Cornell after 1-2 years at Baurch College, but I don't think there are any scholarships for transfer students.
 
on other thought , I would say just pick the best school...and try working out for scholarships or some part time work in Univ itself with some prof etc rather than taking your upfront scholarship to be the only scholarship and then deciding to go to some school based on that.
 
well.....nothing can guarantee 100% success(in your case getting into good finance role in some reputed company)...but going into bad low ranked school will more or less guarantee not getting there
 
Don't listen to the ladder climbing blood suckers. The last college on the resume matters the most. Some people are extremely talented and find high school easy. Others are hard workers and get to respectable institutions with their noses to the grindstone. All you can do is continue to move forward! Doing well in college is much more about working hard. If you want to get into a good grad school, sacrifice a social life for grades. Get close with a professor and do research for a couple years. Get an internship somewhere for the summer. All about hard work.
 
If I had to do it all over again, I would have given up the free ride at the tier-2 school and gone to the best school in my means.

A sound ROE and 'big fish in the small pond' investment decision is a viable explanation in corporate America - I have not found it to work in my favor on Wall St. Not to say it can't be done (I have the battle scars to prove it can), you just need to work exponentially harder to be noticed.

Thats been my experience anyhow :)

Also - Scholarships are HIGHLY negotiable. If you are a strong candidate, don't be afraid to bounce your other scholarship offers off on the adcom. If the school really wants you, you'd be surprised how much they can scrape together 'at the last minute'.
 
Undergrad STEM rankings typically go off of their graduate counterparts, at least in Math, Physics, and CS. http://grad-schools.usnews.rankings...p-science-schools/mathematics-rankings/page+2

Maryland is at 20, CMU is at 36. CMU has the name recognition and Maryland is still highly regarded. You got into the Finance program - great! Quite a few companies will start recruiting for Wall St. jobs next year, and more so by the time you graduate. But you'll definitely want a Math or CS major to add to that if you want to go Quant.

You're in state for UMD right? It should only cost you another 8k/year. 8k will roughly cover one semester, including room and board. Obviously we have spoken about UMD in the past, but I don't think I told you that I was waitlisted at CMU. Didn't get in, unfortunately, but it was my first choice. My intention was to transfer out of UMD. In the end, I didn't and I definitely do not regret my choice.

Lookit, if you go to UMD, you'll be saving quite a bit of money and though it is no CMU, you won't be disregarded when it comes to grad school. Job-wise, the prospects are looking much better now then they did when I started back in 2006. It should only continue upward for your class.

And hey, our football looks to be really good next year and our basketball team will DEFINITELY be better. Worth something right?
 
If I had to do it all over again, I would have given up the free ride at the tier-2 school and gone to the best school in my means.

A sound ROE and 'big fish in the small pond' investment decision is a viable explanation in corporate America - I have not found it to work in my favor on Wall St. Not to say it can't be done (I have the battle scars to prove it can), you just need to work exponentially harder to be noticed.

Thats been my experience anyhow :)

Also - Scholarships are HIGHLY negotiable. If you are a strong candidate, don't be afraid to bounce your other scholarship offers off on the adcom. If the school really wants you, you'd be surprised how much they can scrape together 'at the last minute'.

Totally agree with you here; well at least from an undergrad perspective. I'm currently an undergrad student at Baruch (transferred from another CUNY school) and if I had to do it all over again, I would definitely just have gone to Syracuse or Binghamton University for various reasons. Unless you 100% do not want to take on the cost of a more expensive college, i'd say skip over Baruch and CUNY altogether and go straight for Carnegie Mellon.
 

Lyosha

Psychic in Training
Are your parents paying? if yes, go to carnegie.
if no, do you plan on going to grad school? if yes go to baruch (as an added bonus you'll get the opportunity to take math for finance, taught by MFE professors, so you'll get to sample a fraction of the unholy amount of work we have to do...)
if no go to carnegie.

My opinion.
 

Yos Feit

Grad Student
I can't speak for Baruch undergrad, but you can get a solid math education at Hunter , and the accounting/business program at Queens is good. If you can get into the Macalulay program at either of those two locations, I urge you to give them a close look. From their web site you can see that even housing support might be available:

All Macaulay students receive:
  • Full Undergraduate Tuition Scholarship (excludes fees)
  • Laptop computer
  • $7500 Opportunities Fund to pursue global research, service, and internships
  • Cultural Passport to NY arts and cultural venues

Many students also receive housing support. See the FAQs for more information about the Macaulay scholarship package.

You need to know that all Macalulay students are required to take 8 prescribed, non-negotiable honors classes. Its the same work as taking a minor, but it is not officially a minor. That is why students taking majors with a heavy course loads, like computer science or engineering tend to look at the scholars program instead of the honors program.

I agree with Amanda that "Scholarships are HIGHLY negotiable" However please note, your total aid package may include a fair amount that you are expected to earn at a part time job, and this will cut into your study time. In addition, the value of your package depends on your grades and scores, and some very specific achievements that the school might be shopping for.

I personally know someone that went from Queens Macaulay to a grad program in the London School of Economics, which at least indicates the posibility of getting into a top tier grad school.
 

bob

Faculty (Undercover)
In the deep, dark misty past I turned down a couple schools with bigger names to go where I did because I was offered free tuition. But at the time it was clear this was (a) already an excellent school that was (b) making a definite effort to raise its national profile and aggressively pursuing good students. My best friend from high school got a similar deal and made the same choice; other friends of ours went the Harvard / Princeton / Yale / etc. route, and all of us are doing more or less what I think we would have been doing otherwise. (In my estimation, my friend and I each had roughly 10,000% more fun in college than they did, too.) Anyway, I bought low and have never regretted it.

Obviously there are lots of variables, but in your shoes I'd give Maryland some serious thought. Big schools often have some very good faculty running around, and although it may take longer to get their attention, if you're good it'll happen. You may not get the "selective" label, but if you learn well from good professors the rest will follow, I feel. And maybe I'm hopelessly bourgeois (or else very much focused on being free to do exactly what I want at any given time), but I wouldn't underestimate the value of being able to graduate without debt. Not to mention that a big school will offer a lot of variety in the social direction, too; of course everyone here is totally serious and focused so of course these things are not to be considered, but...well, to quote that great sage Chef, "There's a time and a place for everything, and it's called college."
 
I second Maryland, it is a solid university and you will be able to afford double/triple majoring in cs/math/finance. And the money you save could then be applied to grad school if you so choose.

Even more important than what school you go to, is how well you do. This goes beyond good grades or clubs you join, things everyone does (obviously you should also). Focus on getting to know your professors, explore your options by taking part in research and internships.
 
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