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thanks a lot guys..


My profile is :


GRE: 1470 (q:800+ v: 670) + 5 in AWA

TOEFL: 293

BTech in CS from NIT, Jaipur (former REC) -- 78%

Currently working at IBM, Delhi


@iamnewton .. feels good to join your company, man ... :)

Do you have any idea of the prospects of supporting your education there.. as chances of funds in any form (TA ship , etc) are rare...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks Knd7... same goes for you :)


Yes.. i don't think i'll be going to USC.. you have to pay out of your nose there... UFL has offered me a partial tuition waiver.. and if i can manage to take up a GA there, i'll do fine...


I'm waiting to hear from Cornell, UCSB and Utah.. i'll take Cornell aid or no aid.. and rooting for SOME sort of offer from Utah.. not expecting much frm UCSB...


Keeping my fingers crossed... BTW congrats on your UPenn admit.. great job, mate!! IVY League!! SWEEEEEEET.........



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Congratulations on your admit friend.


I am a straightforward guy so please don't take my comments on your heart but i hope you will take it as constructive criticism on university.


I hate USC like anything.I have seen studnets with dismal GRE[900,850,1000] scorers and poor profiles getting in there.Eventhough USC is a ranked university but in my honest opinion it's not ranks that matters ..i am least concerned about them. You have such a good profile and credentials , I really liked them.Frankly, you don't deserve to be at USC because you are just too good for them.Terminal MS is just flop there.


I am posting few replies of seniors which i collected from various friends of mine on yahoo groups and other forums.



I interviewed at USC for my PhD and my observation was that for a PhD student it is a fantastic school with great research and funding opportunities but they don't have much in the way of financial aid at all for MS students.


As for your question about whether is worth the money, it depends a lot on what you want. If you just want to go on to a job, then it is almost as difficult as getting a job after MS in any other part of the country, except being in the bay area helps a little bit. Of course, it has one of the highest number of international students in its EE and CS programs and therefore you will have a lot of competition as well.


Therefore, in my opinion, I don't think that getting into USC and paying all that money is worth it if you just want to do an MS. There are better schools that do offer financial aid and you are better off applying to them. USC is a well-respected school but I don't think their MS grads have some sort of an edge over the grads from other top 15-20 schools.


However, if money is of no concern to you at all (which makes your question moot, BTW) then USC is a great place to go to school, meet new people and, of course, live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country.


I have noticed that all of my friends and acquaintances who have graduated from NCSU have quickly been snapped up by Dell, Intel and AMD. I think they all recruit from there regularly.


I am not familiar with USC's placements. Of course, you cannot generalize this to mean that USC placements are not as good as NCSU's. Just FYI.


If you don't get aid from either USC or NCSU, I would suggest that you pick NCSU:

1) The living expenses are much much higher in southern California.

2) The chances of getting a job are almost the same.

3) The competition with your fellow graduates is not as high.


Of course, someone studying at either of these 2 universities can shed better light than me


Following is the reply from a CS studnet at USC.


Dudes i was under the same apprenhension before I joined USC. And in my opinion whoever says that USC MS program is not atpar with any other top 10-20 ranked colleges, is a big Fool. I dont understand why and how ppl assumes this.

USC is well respected not only in CA but in whole US.


Infact USC curriculum is much difficult than any other schools in its league.( come here and u ll realize this)


Now about BAY area talks. Yess its close to Bay area. I guess 4-5 hours drive is a short distance. And many companies prefer to call students from all over CA.


I have friends just joined USC from different parts of US. And the only reason they have joined this school is becoz of its infrastructure and faculty, importance of which u guys are gonna realize soon.


USC receives 2.7 LAC applications every year and gives acceptance to only 8000 students..........so thts kinda good ratio.( this fig includes all majors)...........One more thing, gettin into PhD program of USC is extremely difficult.


So my suggestion to u all is start contacting ppl in ur prospective colleges and get the real info about everything.



As a student of USC, I can firmly say that every PENNY spent here is worth. This is not a biased opinion but a known fact.


All the best everyone


Following is the comment from CS studnet from USC.


About class strength.......it might be around 300-400. And by the way i think 50% must be indian.



About per credit fee- 1129$ per credit......You have to finish 27 credits. Either totally by courses or by intern and DR(directed research). DR can be from 1 credit to 6 credit( gettin nething above 2-3 credit in MS is though very difficult) and Intern is of 1 credit.


Courses are generally of 3 credits but there r courses which are of 4 credits too. So basically once u r done with all formalities I can tell you in detail what courses n all to take depending upon ur interest and major.


Anyway about fees.....I think there is already one thread which gives detail info about USC fee structure. Just search tht link and post it here. i think now i can make some correction in that since I just paid my first semester Tuition fees.




One last and most imp. point I would like to mention is that gettin Oncampus Job in USC is very easy. Almost everyone gets it. This is very imp. for those who are gonna work here part time to cover their living expnses.


Almost everyone gets around minimum 6.75$ to 8 or 9$. This is a very imp. factor while considering colleges coz bigger the campus better the chances of gettin Oncampus jobs.


Anothe USC PhD studnet had to say this


as a USC MS CS student i would just like to keep it plain and simple.....

"USC is worth every penny".....acc to seniors here it is an "investment"....and its gonna pay u sometime....how fast it does it depends on u and ur hardwork.....


worth every penny doesnt mean u dont have to work hard... USC makes u slog...and slog a lot...but finally u end up learning a lot .... a lot more..the course material is up-to-date and kickin...the faculty is .....no comparision....and not to mention the infrastructure....u dont spend lakhs of rupees to learn kid stuff...


just for the information.....there is another rule among seniors here..."during the week work as hard as u can...and during the weekends party as hard as u can!!"


though USC might not be number 1....its worth every penny........


Following gives you management of fees at USC.


for an MS u have to complete 27 credits.......so


27 * 1129 = 13,41,252.....taking the conversion to 44 Rs = 1 Dollar.


so ur tuition fees comes to abt 13.5 lakhs....

as mentioned in the above posts.......u will not have to spend on ur living expenses after a campus job.....u will have to spend some of ur cash for the first few days....wen u come here......

also if u get an intern.....after 9 months....u might manage to earn enough money to further decrease that 13.5 lakh amount......

an intern should help u earn abt 1500-4000$ per month....during summer....ie when u work for 40 hrs........summer last for 3 months


so now i guess its ur time to calculate and make ur decision


Another USC guy advised to follow the lin k to decide on POST MS.


The link i have given below is a survey of present/past students of various colleges. U can also compare various colleges by creating tables.




Now, coming to ur question on salaries, i made one observation from this link. In general, a few universities ranked much lower than USC boast of higher salaries. This may be true due to the reasons below:


1. USC is home to a very large number of students across several courses. Therefore it is quite probable that the average may be lower, while if u compare only CS or EE engineering courses, the average would be higher than the university average.


2. Even universities like UMR ranked in 80s, have a higher starting salary. Obvious, as they accomodate only 1/10 the students USC accomodates. They do not offer the variety of courses USC offers, some of which may not have high salaries.





Following are two links which jitters me

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