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UCLA vs CMU (MS in Electrical Engineering - Circuits and Digital VLSI)

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Hello everyone!


The time is nigh for those critical decisions between almost equally reputable institutes, and I'm faced by one as well. I am specializing in the area of Circuits and Digital VLSI, and have received admits to the MS in EE/ECE programs at UCLA and CMU.


Now I'm in a puddle in making a clear decision between the two. Contrary opinions abound aplenty about the elite brand image of CMU on one hand, and the repute of UCLA as a public research institute on the other. 


Over time I have come to believe that CMU would have been an excellent choice for areas such as Computer Science or Robotics, but it has lesser concentration on my area of choice. UCLA, on the other hand, houses excellent faculty and research infrastructure for Circuits. Since I'm pretty clear about my choice of area, I'm looking for some concrete reasoning in favor of or against my current opinion, and any such information would help immensely.


There are also such factors as the outreach and marketability of the CMU tag on your profile, where the repute of the institute as a whole might make up for its lack of concentration on my area. But then again comes a financial constraint into the picture, where CMU would cost me almost 1.5x what UCLA would. Would it actually be worth the added expenditure?


Thank you!

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