Talk Tennis

Talk Tennis (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php)
-   Odds & Ends (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/forumdisplay.php?f=21)
-   -   Does the college you go to REALLY matter? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=282345)

ogruskie 08-19-2009 11:03 PM

Does the college you go to REALLY matter?
 
Eh, another one of my college threads. I started my first week at a community college with hopes of getting out in 2 years. The plan is to major in Neurobiology, at either UC Davis or UC Berkeley. I was going through the list of classes that I'll have to take, and Berkeley requires a far greater amount of classes in order to transfer, which will take me at least 3 years to complete.

See, here's the issue. I can go to UC Davis in 2 years (provided I meet the requirements), or I can take an extra year to finish off some other classes and go to UC Berkeley. And this got me thinking, is it really worth waiting another year? What's the advantage of getting into the "better" university (Berk)? Will I get paid simply because I have "UC Berkeley" on my resume for work, or what?

I figure most of you here are either in college or long out of it, and would offer some insight. Thanks in advance.

jamauss 08-19-2009 11:11 PM

Just consider this. In the 10+ years I've been in the workplace, I've never heard someone say they got a job because of where they went to school, nor have I ever heard of it come up in an interview as a talking point. I have sat in on interviews also to talk to the candidates and as I look over their resume I have never found myself concerned about where they went to school, or even if they have a degree.

I work in technology, and what's most important to me is, can you do the job, and do it well? We'd rather hire HS grads that are very intelligent and experienced than a PhD that has little practical experience. I should know, I have no real college experience to speak of, yet I am very capable at my job, both in technical skills and all the other soft skills (writing, communicating, etc.). That's what my employer cares about, not about where I went to college.

I assume Neurobiology will be similar - as long as you complete your degree, I doubt any place that you interview with is going to care whether it says UCD or Cal on your resume. Both are excellent schools. Personally, if I were in your shoes, I would go with whatever costs less - the ROI of a college degree is ever-shrinking these days with the cost of tuition and books going through the roof and being raised year after year.

goober 08-20-2009 12:03 AM

I was going to offer you a job jamauss, but then I found out what school you went to...


:wink:

In most cases I agree, it doesn't matter what school you went to. Certainly the differences in reputation between UCD and UCB are fairly small IMO not a large chasm. In some cases it may make a difference depending on what your plans are after college, but even then I would say it is far more important what did you learn in the school you went to and what did you get out of it. Another thing to consider is that you are going to excel more at a school that you are happy at and you fit into then just going to a school for a name. Being in Davis is very different from being in Berkeley.

Everything else being equal: Between UCD 2 years and UCB and an extra year I would do UCD. Save the dough and the time.

Nonentity 08-20-2009 12:37 AM

I would say you need to go to a college that has a good program for the specific type of job or study you are interested in. So if you want to be a Neurobiologist, you want to try to get to a college that has a lot of influencial Neurobiologists, a big neurobiology lab, etc etc. In terms of getting a job, you would have a lot more connections which means a lot more job offers when you graduate. So i think its the prestige of the department within the college that counts, not the prestige of the college as a whole.

Lee James 08-20-2009 06:27 AM

I'm working in research, so I have a little bit of insight into just how important the college you choose will be. In my opinion it has very little bearing, and only comes into play in certain situations. As another poster mentioned, it all comes down to what you plan to do after you finish. If you want to pursue a graduate level education, entrance exam scores always trump the college you attended. So say for instance you score very highly, so long as you got good grades, have nice e.c.'s, you'll get in anywhere. Conversely, if you don't do as well with the entrance exam, but you did go to a school that's notorious for having a rigorous undergrad program in your field, and you did really well there (High gpa), you would probably find that your exam score will be glossed over when viewing your app as a whole. This however can work the opposite way as well. Not scoring highly on entrance exams, coupled with a low gpa from a little known or relaxed undergrad program will sink you. So basically my advice would be to pick the school you will be most comfortable in, regardless of prestige, and work your butt off! Believe it or not, they all pretty much teach the same information, and so long as you prove that you're capable, internships & job opportunities will come. Do the very best you can, rock the entrance exam, and you'll be fine.

dave333 08-20-2009 06:40 AM

Theoretically it doesn't; you probably won't get that much of a better education at an Ivy League than a state school if you work hard and do your best.

That said however, attending an elite institution does offer you the benefits of networking and connections, which can be very large keys to future success, especially if you are in a field like law, politics, or finance and how people perceive is important. And of course, you want to at least have decent facilities if you want to be able to do research.

Still, if you are a hard worker and fairly intelligent, it shouldn't really matter where you go. At the same time, if you are a hard worker and fairly intelligent, you will probably end up in an elite school anyway. But if you did screw up high school due to immaturity, it is never too late.

raiden031 08-20-2009 06:59 AM

My opinion is that for most people, attending a private college or an out-of-state college is a complete waste of money.

If you are a high-profile attorney, politician, or wall-street investor, then maybe your school matters, but for most people it does not matter.

What matters is whether you have the right degree for the job, you have the right connections to recommend you for the job, and you have the experience to demonstrate your competency. The hardest thing is to get started when you don't know alot of people in the field and don't have alot of experience. You often start off taking a job that isn't a good fit, and then work your way into a better job. Then it becomes automatic from there and doors just start opening because you develop contacts, get experience, and your self-confidence also increases.

max 08-20-2009 07:03 AM

Your school really does not matter, with the exceptions raiden notes.

The big thing is your web of social connections: yours and your parents and relatives. That kind of thing lands big breaks to people. Of course, friends you meet at school form part of this.

LuckyR 08-20-2009 03:14 PM

Yes and no. If you are not going into the higher echelons of finance, a "prestigious" school will not help you. But going to an known school in an area can help you in getting into grad schools in that area. Most importantly getting into practically any school that has the sort of atmosphere that you thrive in, will help you match your potential and end up helping you way more than a random school without it, that happens to be well known by others.

CHOcobo 08-20-2009 03:29 PM

yes it does matter big time. you'll get a better degree, even though it's the same name and length.

if i was an employer, i would rather take the guy from MIT than they guy at MN Sate if i had a choice.

bigger college are more associated with more companies as well, so you'll be in a better intern.

r2473 08-20-2009 03:33 PM

It might.

Do you know where you want to work? Does that employer recruit out of both schools?

At any rate, I say go to Berkley. Surely the more prestigious school. Surely more employers (or graduate schools if that is your aim) will be looking for Berkley grads.

As for the cost, education is BY FAR the single greatest investment you can make (thinking of how much it costs vs. your return over your lifetime...financial and non-financial return). The small extra investment in Berkley COULD have nice upside. At worst, you will be no worse off than the UC Davis choice. The extra cost is de minimis over a lifetime.

mtommer 08-20-2009 04:28 PM

It does depend on the job and your aspirations. The top jobs aren't found in newspaper ads. They are given to people whose names are put into the highly selective pool of possible candidates by those high up in the company. You don't even get to hob snob with those higher ups unless you have the right schooling and connections (which often start at your school).

raiden031 08-20-2009 04:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by r2473 (Post 3830846)
It might.

Do you know where you want to work? Does that employer recruit out of both schools?

At any rate, I say go to Berkley. Surely the more prestigious school. Surely more employers (or graduate schools if that is your aim) will be looking for Berkley grads.

As for the cost, education is BY FAR the single greatest investment you can make (thinking of how much it costs vs. your return over your lifetime...financial and non-financial return). The small extra investment in Berkley COULD have nice upside. At worst, you will be no worse off than the UC Davis choice. The extra cost is de minimis over a lifetime.

I don't know about these schools, but I know in Maryland if you go to public schools, tuition in-state is probably around $8K a year right now, whereas out-of-state is probably over double that. And then there are the private schools that cost $30k. So we're talking of price differences of nearly $100K over the course of 4 years from choosing a public in-state verses a private school when more often than not the public university degree is sufficient.

If you want to be a CEO and/or be a wealthy businessman, then by all means go to the best school. This doesn't apply to 99% of workers though.

フェデラー 08-20-2009 04:56 PM

yes its very important. ill explain when i feel like it :)

r2473 08-20-2009 05:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by raiden031 (Post 3831075)
I don't know about these schools, but I know in Maryland if you go to public schools, tuition in-state is probably around $8K a year right now, whereas out-of-state is probably over double that. And then there are the private schools that cost $30k. So we're talking of price differences of nearly $100K over the course of 4 years from choosing a public in-state verses a private school when more often than not the public university degree is sufficient.

If you want to be a CEO and/or be a wealthy businessman, then by all means go to the best school. This doesn't apply to 99% of workers though.

What % of students do you think pay the full cost of tuition?

If you are not smart enough to get scholarships and grants, then I imagine you really have no business at the top schools in the first place.

Claudius 08-20-2009 06:56 PM

Well it seems like time is the issue for you, If you could complete your studies in two years at both universities, it would be a better idea to attend Berkeley, but considering that you'll have another year, I'd say go with Davis.

I guarantee you. You're never going to look back at your life and say, "Damn I should've attended Berkelely".

BreakPoint 08-20-2009 11:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dave333 (Post 3828466)
Theoretically it doesn't; you probably won't get that much of a better education at an Ivy League than a state school if you work hard and do your best.

The difference between the top schools and the lower-tier schools is not so much what they teach you in class but who you're competing against. Remember that at the Ivy League schools, everyone else around you is also a superstar who has gotten nothing but A's their entire lives. So since grading is on a bell curve and only around 20% of the students can get A's, everyone will be fighting tooth and nail to get that A. And these are some very smart, hard working, and motivated people you will be competing against for that A. This forces you to have to study that much harder, and as a result, learn a lot more than if you were at a school with a less than stellar student body where you don't have to work as hard to get that A. If the competition isn't that intense, you can pretty much cruise and do well at a lesser school.

It's like the difference between winning the US Open and winning some small futures event in Kansas. Who's the better player? Federer or someone ranked #300 in the world?

ogruskie 08-21-2009 12:23 AM

Thanks for the replies!

I feel that I should try to get into Davis...

Lakoste 08-21-2009 01:09 AM

You're still two years away from transferring, see how your grades go and whether you even like your major. Two years is a long time.

Regarding the importance of going to a top school, nothing wrong with choosing a Davis even if you have the grades for Berkeley. I did something similar, UIUC over Stanford, for financial reasons and I've never regretted it. Just make sure that you network and make a lot of connections, then what school you go to really doesn't matter.

RealityPolice 08-21-2009 01:36 AM

My university doesn't matter, that's for damn sure.


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:09 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2006 - Tennis Warehouse