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msebsim
01-23-2014, 03:54 AM
Hello,

Currently I am enrolled in a little university known as Bentley. It is a small business university. I like it but I don't feel like the environment and opportunity will allow me to have research experience or good recommendation letters. My current GPA is 3.71 (mind you I am a freshman into second semester). I think that I could possibly transfer to NYU, U of Michigan, Northwestern, or possible somewhere else. Outside of accounting and finance Bentley is not well known and really now I am dead set on pursuing economics career. Here is the kick, I have a scholarship at Bentley that covers half my tuition. Its a great help to my parents and even though they say its okay if I change schools I feel bad for wasting my merit scholarship, however I could use the merit scholarship to get accepted at a reputable economics program.

So should I transfer to a better undergrad to position myself for a good PhD (top40ish) or should I stay and try to preform better?

This is very important as deadline are approaching and any answer would give me a piece of mind.

Thanks in advance.

Food4Thought
01-23-2014, 06:14 AM
OMG you go to Bentley!? You guys have Scott Sumner, which is totally awesome. He is a Chicago PhD and has become pretty influential in monetary thinking with his championing of market monetarism. Please tell him I say hi.

If you are able to transfer to Northwestern and do well, then your prospects are definitely brighter. However, it seems like it might be a financial burden.

You have to ask yourself, if given the opportunity to go to a prestigious school, would I really be able to excel? If the answer is yes, then it is a no-brainer. If the answer is maybe, then it is a tougher decision. If it is no, then I don't think it will make much of a difference.

Econhead
01-23-2014, 12:00 PM
You have to ask yourself, if given the opportunity to go to a prestigious school, would I really be able to excel? If the answer is yes, then it is a no-brainer. If the answer is maybe, then it is a tougher decision. If it is no, then I don't think it will make much of a difference.

Just to tack onto this, there is a difference between saying "I will excel" and "I will do my best" and actually doing so. I excelled during my first two years, but when it really counted and I started overloading myself by taking calc 3, Diff EQ, and proofs all in the same semester, I would continuously let myself down (knowing I did not try my hardest) and continue to tell myself that I would. So, as someone that has made mistakes, if you choose this opportunity, I encourage you to make the conscious decision to truly try your best. Doing UG work at northwestern will certainly afford you opportunities (whether you go to grad school or not) that others do not (but would love to!) have. Make use of your resources.

msebsim
01-23-2014, 07:44 PM
I think I could do well.

Does coming from a business school that only well known in Boston hurt my chances at a top 40 program or does it depend on my research and grades.

Catrina
01-23-2014, 07:49 PM
Check to see if your school has a program where you can take classes at other schools. Some cities have programs like that, where a student at any school in the city can take a class at any other school in the city while paying tuition (or getting a scholarship) from the home school.

If your school participates in such a program, you may be able to take economics classes at one of the other excellent Boston-area programs.

msebsim
01-23-2014, 08:12 PM
Bentley has some program with Brandeis but it doesn't apply to what I want to study, economics. I have looked at other schools that I could transfer to that would be worth it if I got in; Northwestern and NYU. Any thing else are just good state schools but the cost the same as bentley and don't add prestige as they have good graduate program but that doesn't mean good undergrad as their undergrad is seen as less prestigious.

So the question is should I just attempt at getting a research assistant position with the more well known economists at bentley or possible at a think tank and just get good marks, or to possbily go to a good phd program do I need to go to a NYU or Harvard level school. Most people I asked including family and friends are saying just keep up my marks in Bentley and make it clear to the economics department that I want to go to grad school (its a small department so far they have been really nice) but I don't know. I like the small size of Bentley a lot and the few economists that teach here are relatively well known.

My best option is I guess is to wait till this new semester is over and think it over the summer. If anyone has experience applying to PhD programs or even MA (I could do so to reposition my self later) your advice would be most appreciated. (so far I really appreciate Catrina (http://www.urch.com/forums/members/catrina.html), Food4Thought (http://www.urch.com/forums/members/food4thought.html) , and EconHead for your responses)