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Which one should I choose for PhD in aerospace engineering - Virginia Tech or Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute?


Windeolus
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I am having a hard time making this final decision. I am interested in Computational side of research in Aeroelasticity of Rotorcrafts (eVTOL, Wind Turbine). 

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

  • Higher stipend but only for 1 year
  • PI is a distinguished professor with a large group and works on exactly the research I want. Supports internships. Most importantly, gives personal time and attention (I require that kind of advising style as I am coming straight from undergrad). PI mentioned that he will be able to extend my funding offer to RA after a semester or two.
  • A better location in terms of the city, food, and groceries. It has an international airport close by plus 2 hrs from NYC, but too cold of the weather.
  • Lower ranked but has great respect in the industry (looking for industrial career)

Virginia Tech

  • Good enough stipend for 3 years
  • PI is a distinguished professor with a large group and works on exactly the research I want. Supports internships. But does not give lot of personal time and attention. PI mentioned that he will be able to extend my funding offer to RA after a semester or two.
  • The campus is beautiful, but the city very small and middle of nowhere. The closest airport is a regional airport, and Wash DC is like 4/5 hrs drive. Moderate cold weather.
  • Higher ranked 

I would really appreciate if anyone could provide me with their feedback. Thank you in advance!

 

 

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