My chance at UCB? Or CMU/MIT

JoeYang

Member
Hello, I want to apply to UCB for MFE Spring 2021 along with several other programs. Can you please evaluate my profile and let me know if I have a good chance of securing the program? Here are the details:
1. Bachelor's degree in Computer Engineering from the National University of Singapore. Overall CGPA: 3.3/4, two-year GPA: 3.35/4. Rank(top 35%), it is a rigorous program, and grades are based on bell curves.
2. Very good grades in subjects like Stats, Math, and Algorithm, average at Electrical Engineering related courses.
3. Programming Languages: Python, Java, C, PHP, Javascript.
4. Final year project on website development, currently 10k users.
5. 3 internships: 1. three-month software engineer at a local company. 2. 8 months at FLAG as a Data Analyst 3. 3 months at BAT as a Software Engineer.
6. 1-year full time, quantitative developer at Ant Financial, dealing with Forex market.
7. GRE Score: 157V 170Q 3.5AWA. Toefl: 110 29|29|25|27.
8. Few courses in econs and caculus.
9. Recommendations: 2 academic and 1 industrial, all quite strong.
 

noether-skolem

Well-Known Member
C++
Fellow NUS alum with similar scores as you (3.4/4.0 GPA, 170 Q, 159 V, 4 AWA, 111 TOEFL) though I'm applied math major. I got into Columbia, Cornell, UChicago, rejected by Princeton, CMU, NYU Courant, but I think you have way better chances than me since you have much stronger internship/work experience. I had almost 3y of research/database analyst experience on the sell-side, which is rather unimpressive compared to your internships/work experience. I did a 1-year MSc in maths after my BSc so that might have helped a tiny bit.

Anyway I've always said this to anyone interested in applying: Just do it, you've got nothing to lose anyway other than the admission fees. If you're good enough you'll get in, otherwise you can get some feedback or more info on what you're lacking (again, I believe you've got a really strong profile, just work on your essays and video interviews). Best of luck!
 

JoeYang

Member
Fellow NUS alum with similar scores as you (3.4/4.0 GPA, 170 Q, 159 V, 4 AWA, 111 TOEFL) though I'm applied math major. I got into Columbia, Cornell, UChicago, rejected by Princeton, CMU, NYU Courant, but I think you have way better chances than me since you have much stronger internship/work experience. I had almost 3y of research/database analyst experience on the sell-side, which is rather unimpressive compared to your internships/work experience. I did a 1-year MSc in maths after my BSc so that might have helped a tiny bit.

Anyway I've always said this to anyone interested in applying: Just do it, you've got nothing to lose anyway other than the admission fees. If you're good enough you'll get in, otherwise you can get some feedback or more info on what you're lacking (again, I believe you've got a really strong profile, just work on your essays and video interviews). Best of luck!
Hi noether thanks for your kind reply, my biggest insecurity comes with my comparably low GPA. It is clear that you have a better GPA, GRE, Toefl than me. I think my internships and full-time career will add some cents. Good luck to me!
 

JoeYang

Member
Fellow NUS alum with similar scores as you (3.4/4.0 GPA, 170 Q, 159 V, 4 AWA, 111 TOEFL) though I'm applied math major. I got into Columbia, Cornell, UChicago, rejected by Princeton, CMU, NYU Courant, but I think you have way better chances than me since you have much stronger internship/work experience. I had almost 3y of research/database analyst experience on the sell-side, which is rather unimpressive compared to your internships/work experience. I did a 1-year MSc in maths after my BSc so that might have helped a tiny bit.

Anyway I've always said this to anyone interested in applying: Just do it, you've got nothing to lose anyway other than the admission fees. If you're good enough you'll get in, otherwise you can get some feedback or more info on what you're lacking (again, I believe you've got a really strong profile, just work on your essays and video interviews). Best of luck!
Btw, may I ask how do you convert your NUS cap to US GPA? currently I am using A 4.0, A- 3.7, B+ 3.3, B 3.0 to count. I have heard someone used WES to convert and certificate
 

noether-skolem

Well-Known Member
C++
You don't have to convert it on your own, none of the programs I applied to asked you to convert it to US 4.0-scale GPA, they all provide options to indicate your original GPA scale (5.0-scale in our cases).

Columbia required me to use WES for the credential verification after getting admitted since NUS doesn't send official transcripts via secure email (only starting from 2019 graduates onward), and WES converted my GPA to 4.0-scale. I'd say you should wait until you get admitted and check the requirements from the program (who knows they use something other than WES) so you won't waste money.
 

JoeYang

Member
You don't have to convert it on your own, none of the programs I applied to asked you to convert it to US 4.0-scale GPA, they all provide options to indicate your original GPA scale (5.0-scale in our cases).

Columbia required me to use WES for the credential verification after getting admitted since NUS doesn't send official transcripts via secure email (only starting from 2019 graduates onward), and WES converted my GPA to 4.0-scale. I'd say you should wait until you get admitted and check the requirements from the program (who knows they use something other than WES) so you won't waste money.
That is very informative! As I was wondering if I should use WES to help the admission office to better understand my GPA. It seems I don't need to do that. Btw, does your GPA increase slightly after conversion? I heard that they count NUS A/A- As 4.0 and B+/B As 3.33
 

noether-skolem

Well-Known Member
C++
No, they count A- as 3.67, B as 3.00. Either way it shouldn't matter since you'll input your original GPA (5.0-scale, what's printed on your transcripts) during the application process anyway. I only used WES after getting admitted for verification purpose.
 

JoeYang

Member
No, they count A- as 3.67, B as 3.00. Either way it shouldn't matter since you'll input your original GPA (5.0-scale, what's printed on your transcripts) during the application process anyway. I only used WES after getting admitted for verification purpose.
Thank you very much! that solved my doubt!
 

JoeYang

Member
OMG friends I checked my UCB portal and it shows this:
1606012448657.png

But i havnt received any emails, what does this mean?!
 

noether-skolem

Well-Known Member
C++
I can't remember exactly but I think I got something similar in the form of a pdf. It's basically a to-do list for you to work on during the application process that would strengthen your application. I didn't proceed further with my application last year so I can't comment on what will happen afterward.
 

JoeYang

Member
I can't remember exactly but I think I got something similar in the form of a pdf. It's basically a to-do list for you to work on during the application process that would strengthen your application. I didn't proceed further with my application last year so I can't comment on what will happen afterward.
I see, I will start preparing the finance courses first and wait for their further notice
 

FDneo

Member
C++
I heard there were only 1 or 2 people admitted from waitlist last year:( I would rather apply for 2021fall and save the money
Hi friends, I was updated with a waitlist 😢, I don't know what to do now, should I take the pre courses?
 
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