santeddy Posted April 14, 2010 Share Posted April 14, 2010 (edited) I am almost done with my admissions cycle this Fall. Three more universities are left, but they are surely not going to affect my decision anymore. I have finalized on 2 universities, and have to decide among them. I will list all the information I have about them, and kindly request everyone to pour in their views and suggestions. Primary aim: To pursue PhD right after Masters. If in case Masters misfires, I may look for job/other opportunities. Currently it is PhD. University of Florida Course: MS Mechanical Engineering (Fluids Specialization) Scholarship: Achievement award 15k. Total Cost: Around 28-30k USD maximum for 2 years. Courses: I can take 8 courses at the maximum, out of which I may take 6 courses from the Thermal/Fluids subjects (4 are minimum). Out of these 6, three are regular courses. I can see only 1 very interesting course out of the rest 3, which is not being offered this Fall or Spring 11. So I will have to take it in Fall 2011 or Spring 2012, and it is not confirmed whether it will be offered then. Pros: 1. US advantage. 2. Networking will be easy, as I can attend various conferences in US, and meet up with my future PhD advisors. 3. Will get to work on the specialization which I intended to. 4. NASA is next to UFL. May get a chance to do some projects. Chances are pretty less for this, but still not completely ruled out. 5. Pretty huge Thermal/Fluids division, with lots of labs. 6. The department is Mech and Aero. So may get a chance to work with some Aero profs, at least for sometime. 7. If Masters misfires, the jobs are possible there. Some seniors do get decent FT offers. Also, if I plan to come back to India, job options are quite a lot in Mech firms. 8. With the Achievement Award, I do not need to do any part-time jobs. Hence I get a lot of time for my work and research. Cons: 1. Chances of getting a thesis is really tough, as profs generally won't fund you for that. 2. Most people finish of their course in 1.5 years with a M.Eng degree. 3. Considering the above two, I may not be in a position to interact with the professors on a academic level, which will be a deterrent in getting quality recos for PhD. 4. Again, if I am not able to do thesis, and it is equally tough to get an RA, I won't have enough research exposure for the future PhD. 5. High Desi junta. Sorry, but I have a little aversion. 6. Bulk university, the chances of getting RA/TA further decrease, to add on to the reasons 1 and 4. 7. Most people interested in research, convert their MS to PhD in UFL, in that case, funding and projects come way because of longer commitments. But, I am not interested in doing PhD at UFL. TU Delft Course: MSc Chemical Engineering (Nuclear Science and Engineering Track) Scholarship: Nominated for one huge schol. Decision will be out by May. Total Cost: W/o any scholarship, 40k USD for 2 years. Courses: They are just too good. Very wide range of courses, will give me a much needed diversification, before jumping on into my PhD. A very good set of electives as well. Compulsory internship + Compulsory industrial project + Compulsory thesis, apart from the individual term projects in the various courses. Pros: 1. Quality of life - Awesome. 2. As mentioned above, the courses will give me an overall exposure, which will be very good for my PhD. 3. I will get to work on Nuclear related research for my Masters, which I always wanted. My present research is on exactly those lines. The basics are of Fluid Mechanics, but the overall application is towards Reactors. MS in Nuclear wasn't possible in US, considering the TAL and pre-requisites. In UFL, it is definitely not possible. TU Delft has a couple of research reactors as well. I can definitely work there, unlike US. 4. TU Delft brand >> UFL brand. (Please correct me if I am wrong) 5. Being involved in good internship and projects, I can interact with professors/scientists in a much better way. This will lead to quality Recos. 6. Nuclear PhD is my childhood dream, and I will get a chance to give it an attempt in both EU and US. TAL issues may pop-up, but i have seen many Nuclear PhDs from India in US. 7. I will be involved in Multidisciplinary research all the time. My department is Applied Sciences and not Chemical Engineering. App. Sci consists of Chemical Engineering, Applied Physics, and a couple of more departments. Hence, I get to chose from a wider platter. 8. Less number of desis. Ideally the number of desis in my specialization, Nuclear Science, is going to be very less ( <4-5). Cons: 1. High expenses compared to UFL. Part-time jobs are not possible. RA culture has not yet developed fully. So, it is not that easy . 2. If in case MSc misfires, the job options are not that great in Netherlands. Even if I plan to come back to India, options are only IGCAR, BARC, RRCAT as of now. One can't predict 2-3 years down the line. These organizations have pretty good research, but the scheme through which I will be joining is pretty harmful for my career. They prefer students who join directly after B.Tech, or through another scheme, in which they do M.Tech from IITs. I will be at a loss here. 3. I will be working mainly in Boiling Water Reactors and Gas Cooled Reactors in TU Delft. Whereas in India, only Fast Breeder Reactors and Heavy Water Reactors research in active. So, post Masters, I will be at a loss, if it misfires. 4. Considering the high costs, the repayment issues will be a huge issue. Even in case of a job or a PhD, I will have a live hand-to-mouth to repay the loan. I intend to take at least 10-15 lakhs as loan. 5. Networking maybe an issue, compared to UFL. Apart from all these, If in case schol works out, I can have a gala time in Italy, Spain, Germany, France, Switzerland etc etc, considering the proximity and the conveyance. Weekend trips to each country will be possible. In Florida, I will get to see beaches, and Disneyland at the maximum. Please help me in making my decision. You can see from my post, that I am inclined a bit towards TU Delft as of now. But, my dad's friends in a huge corporate firm (who are MS/PhD from US), suggest to go to UFL, considering the US advantage. Kindly pour in your opinions, and what other factors should I be considering apart from the ones mentioned above. Edited April 14, 2010 by santeddy Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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