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Fall 2017 EECS Applicant Profiles and Admission Results

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Figured it would be helpful for us and future applicants to have an EECS topic similar to this one: 

Undergrad Institution: (School or type of school, such as big state, lib arts, ivy, technical, foreign (what country?))
Masters Institution: (if applicable, otherwise delete this)

Major(s):
Minor(s):
GPA in Major:
Overall GPA:
Position in Class: (No numbers needed, but are you top? near top? average? struggling?)
Type of Student: (Domestic/International, male/female, minority?)

GRE Scores (revised/old version):
Q:
V:
W:


TOEFL Total: (if applicable, otherwise delete this)

Research Experience: (At your school or elsewhere? What field? How much time? Any publications (Mth author out of N?) or conference talks etc...)

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: (Within your school or outside?)

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: (Such as tutor, TA, etc...)

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

Special Bonus Points: (Such as connections, grad classes, famous recommenders, female or minority status etc...)

Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter:

Applying to Where:

School - MS/PhD? - Department - Research Interest
School - MS/PhD? - Department - Research Interest
School - MS/PhD? - Department - Research Interest

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Undergrad Institution:  Unknown, unranked Liberal Arts school

Major(s): Physics
Minor(s): Math
GPA in Major: 3.78/4.00
Overall GPA: 3.43/4.00
Demographics/Background: Underrepresented Minority


GRE Scores:
Q: 162 (82%)
V: 166 (97%)
W: 4.0 (59%)


LOR:  I think they're all of average quality. The professors know me *personally* very well, and I did well in their classes, but never did research for them.  


Research Experience:  Two NSF summer REUs at good to great universities in thin film devices. One post graduation research internship in Asia, working in nanodevices. 

 

Publications/Abstracts/Presentations: Two fourth author publications. 

 

Pertinent Activities or Jobs:  Working as full time electrical engineer. 

 

Research Interests: MEMs, photonics, nano devices.

 

Institutions/Programs:     Electrical Engineering;    Berkeley (PhD),  UC Santa Barbara (PhD), Yale (PhD), UC Davis (masters), UBC (masters), Toronto (masters), Waterloo (masters), University of Oregon (Masters)

Nanoengineering: UC SanDiego (PhD)

Comments:  Took a two year break during the middle of school, 6.5 years to graduate. Bad Chemistry grades. US Citizen. 

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Hello Guys. Thanking all of you ahead for reading my posts and writing your thoughts as comments.  I have been out of Grad School application scene past 5 years and need some help assessing my profile and giving me few tips and suggestion.  It will be great to know how my profile stacks up against fellow applications for Top 30 EE RFIC/Analog IC/Circuits PhD Programs in US/Europe.  Any University suggestion is appreciated as well.  For Spring 2018/Fall 2018 session.   (Critics are welcome as i need to improve, be as frank as possible)

My Profile:     GRE (Q 170 / V 155 / 4.0) , MS in EE with Research/Thesis from TTU (2012) - GPA 3.7/4.0, BS in EE GPA 3.6/4    (No Publications)

Work Experience -- 4 years and counting -- 3 years at Qualcomm (top 5 RFIC Company) as RF Hardware and Test Engineer, 1.5+ at another competitor (present). 

I have been told my work experience is negative for PhD as its been 4 years since i graduated with MS, Does it matter that much ? What do you guys think about my acceptance chances to Top 30-50 EE Programs In US/Europe .  Any university you want to suggest.

Few University of my choice with similar research interest  --  UT Austin, Texas A&M, UC San Diego, UC Santa Barbara, UC Irvine/Davis.  Georgia Tech, Univ of Colorado Boulder, Arizona State University, University of Washington. USC, UMass Amherst. NCSU

Thanks Again,

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10 hours ago, DiscoTech said:

Any domestic students get an interview request from UIUC, Purdue, or Princeton? I've already heard from Stanford and Berkeley ....

According to the results, UIUC has already accepted EE PhD students. I wonder if not receiving an interview from these schools by now is a bad sign.. Fingers crossed :P 

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11 hours ago, DiscoTech said:

Any domestic students get an interview request from UIUC, Purdue, or Princeton? I've already heard from Stanford and Berkeley ....

I received a "chat" invite with the PhD students of a research lab at UIUC around 3 weeks ago and had the chat the following week. The lab's professor and I have a "chat" scheduled for this week (should have been earlier but the professor was busy for a couple of weeks). I applied to their CS program.

Edited by Zaid Qureshi

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Undergrad Institution: San Jose State University
Major(s):Electrical Engineering
GPA in Major:3.78
Overall GPA:3.75
Position in Class:??

Type of Student: Male Asian American

GRE Scores (revised/old version):
Q:157
V:148
W:3.5
(I know they're horrible. Wasn't planning on taking the GRE and just staying at SJSU, but my professors pushed me to apply to other schools so I took it last minute without studting directly after my last final.  Definitely the scores I deserve for the effort I put in unfortunately) 

Research Experience: none
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: HKN, TBP, PKP
Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Internship last summer
Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:nope
Special Bonus Points: nope
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: I was the lead for our senior design project. It was a visible light communication system for cars and traffic infrastructure. I did software development, schematic design, and was involved in the signal filter design and analysis. 
Applying to Where: UCB, UC Davis, Cal Poly SLO, SJSU. Mix between electrical and computer engineering masters, with a focus on visual computing, parallel processing with GPUs, and computer graphics.

I'm hoping to get into Davis. Their program is really encompasses the material that I'm interested in.  Hopefully my GRE scores won't disqualify me, but that is a very likely to happen. 
 

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On 1/24/2017 at 10:19 PM, DiscoTech said:

Any domestic students get an interview request from UIUC, Purdue, or Princeton? I've already heard from Stanford and Berkeley ....

I had a chat with a POI from Princeton last week. He told me they started interviewing about a week ago.

I am not sure if they interview all of their applicants.

Good luck to you!

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On 1/30/2017 at 2:06 AM, nixipixi said:
On 1/15/2017 at 3:52 AM, abcde12345 said:

Figured it would be helpful for us and future applicants to have an EECS topic similar to this one: 

 

Well, this thread is a lot slower than the same thread from last year. I wonder why ..... 

Edited by DiscoTech

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To those waiting on Purdue, unofficial e-mails seem to have gone out (received one myself). This probably won't be reflected in results until graduate school sends the official letter based on ECE's recommendation for admission. 

Open House - 3/6 - 3/7.

Hope this helps those waiting. 

 

If anyone has the scoop on UIUC or Princeton, would love to hear some news. Not a peer from either school yet.

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Likewise, if anyone has the scoop on Penn ESE for PhD applicants, I'd love to know. This forum is scarily quiet this year...

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9 hours ago, swannsway said:

Likewise, if anyone has the scoop on Penn ESE for PhD applicants, I'd love to know. This forum is scarily quiet this year...

Strong job market keeping applicants out of grad school maybe?

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On 2/10/2017 at 7:06 AM, DiscoTech said:

To those waiting on Purdue, unofficial e-mails seem to have gone out (received one myself). This probably won't be reflected in results until graduate school sends the official letter based on ECE's recommendation for admission. 

Open House - 3/6 - 3/7.

Hope this helps those waiting. 

 

If anyone has the scoop on UIUC or Princeton, would love to hear some news. Not a peer from either school yet.

For Princeton EE PhD, I was contacted for interviews 1/19 last year. I believe they interview all candidates they intend to accept. Here is a quote from their email:

"Before making final admission decisions, our department makes skype/phone calls to all short listed applicants. These calls give us a chance to confirm our impressions and provide you an opportunity to ask questions about our program."

I never heard back after my interview...

On 2/11/2017 at 5:13 PM, DiscoTech said:

Strong job market keeping applicants out of grad school maybe?

Combined with EE/CS people being less social in general.

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Hello! I received an email last week about a fellowship nomination to UCLA. It stated that they had gone through their first batch of applicants and I was nominated for a fellowship. I tried to clarify the status of my application but it was very vague and was told to wait until March. This is what's confusing me..how can I be nominated if I'm not officially in the school yet?

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9 hours ago, Edotdl said:

For Princeton EE PhD, I was contacted for interviews 1/19 last year. I believe they interview all candidates they intend to accept. Here is a quote from their email:

"Before making final admission decisions, our department makes skype/phone calls to all short listed applicants. These calls give us a chance to confirm our impressions and provide you an opportunity to ask questions about our program."

I never heard back after my interview...

I guess I suspected this was the case. :(

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11 hours ago, Dreameir said:

Hello! I received an email last week about a fellowship nomination to UCLA. It stated that they had gone through their first batch of applicants and I was nominated for a fellowship. I tried to clarify the status of my application but it was very vague and was told to wait until March. This is what's confusing me..how can I be nominated if I'm not officially in the school yet?

Just relax. Individual departments cannot admit applicants. The graduate school/college does so on the behalf of your department. Right now your department presented you to the graduate school for admission with a fellowship. The graduate school just needs to sign off on both - the admission decision and the fellowship nomination. From my limited knowledge, the graduate school doesn't do too much second guessing of the department's decision. Barring something crazy in your file, you're in.

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Hello fellow EEs. I am new to the forum and will post my profile when I get my last decision (hopefully soon).

But before that, I have posted a question in the Decisions thread that I'd love to have y'all weigh in on - 

Thanks and good luck!

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16 hours ago, DiscoTech said:

Just relax. Individual departments cannot admit applicants. The graduate school/college does so on the behalf of your department. Right now your department presented you to the graduate school for admission with a fellowship. The graduate school just needs to sign off on both - the admission decision and the fellowship nomination. From my limited knowledge, the graduate school doesn't do too much second guessing of the department's decision. Barring something crazy in your file, you're in.

Ahh thank you! I actually got word today that I have been unofficially admitted :D super happy right now. Goodluck to everyone out there!

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Undergrad Institution: Relatively unknown European Uni
Major(s): ECE
Overall GPA: No GPA here, but 90+% average
Position in Class: Tip top
Type of Student: Male White Domestic (But live internationally)

GRE Scores (revised/old version): Not Taken

Research Experience: 18 months with research group in my department, no pubs
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: 2 Scholarships, Multiple academic awards (Internal and External)

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: TA for two semesters

Special Bonus Points: Great references, very relevant final year project (tied with relevant industry partner)
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: 

Applying to Where:

University of Toronto - MASc - ECE - CompArch, FPGA Applications Accepted (fully funded)

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Undergrad Institution: Newer University in Canada
Major(s): ECE

GPA in Major: not calculated by school but > 4.2/4.3 
Overall GPA: 4.04/4.3
Position in Class: Top 1-2
Type of Student: Male White Domestic

GRE Scores (revised/old version): Not Taken

Research Experience: NSERC USRA summer 2016, continued as an RA.
Awards/Honors/Recognitions: IEEE PES and about 5 others

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: TA for two semesters

Special Bonus Points: Great references, another degree, work experience, IEEE Student Branch Chair, 
Any Other Info That Shows Up On Your App and Might Matter: No publications, two being worked on

Applying to Where:

University of Toronto - MASc - ECE - Biomedical or Electromagnetics - Interviewed

MIT - PhD - Rejected

University of Waterloo - MASc/PhD - ECE - Electromagnetics 

University of Ontario Institute of Technology - MASc - Accepted (full funding)

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Ok, so for some weird reason I waited until everything was decided until I posted. So here goes:

Undergrad Institution: Foreign University (Israel)
Masters Institution:Foreign University (Israel)

Major(s): EE (4 year program)
GPA in Major: BSc: 87/100, MSc: 92/100
Position in Class: near top

GRE Scores (revised):
Q:167
V: 162
W: 4.0

TOEFL Total: 117

Research Experience: over 6 years R&D research in Industry

3x 1st authored papers, 2x 1st authored conferences, 1 patent

Awards/Honors/Recognitions: nope

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: TA, very diverse research experience due to my job

Special Bonus Points: female, pursued MSc while working full time+ being a mom

Applying to Where: all PhDs - MIT, Stanford, Caltech, Princeton, Columbia, Cornell, Harvard

Both acceptances are with fellowships. was interviewed at Stanford but didn't get accepted. Assume rejections from all else.

 

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Congrats nixipixi ! Where are you headed ? 

Undergrad Institution: Foreign (India))
Major(s): EE (5  year : BTech + MTech )
Minor(s):
GPA in Major: 8.44/10
Overall GPA:
Position in Class: above average

GRE Scores (revised/old version):
Q: 170
V:  161
W:  4.0


TOEFL Total: 112

Research Experience: 3 decent research projects, 2 publications (unrelated to area), 1 submitted (related)

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:  none

Pertinent Activities or Jobs: TA for one semester

Any Miscellaneous Accomplishments that Might Help:

Special Bonus Points: None that I can think of ; I think my recos were strong ; One of them is pretty well-connected

Applying to Where: Stanford, Cornell (going), UCSD, UCLA, UT Austin, UW-Madison, UMD (assume rejection for ones not heard)

Moral of the story : Research experience can more than compensate for bad grades 

   
As
  •  

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Undergrad Institution: Large Canadian school
Major(s): Computer Engineer
GPA in Major: 3.83
Overall GPA: 3.83
Position in Class: near top
Type of Student: International Male for US schools

GRE Scores (revised/old version):
Q: 170
V: 162
W: 4.0


Research Experience: No publications :(

Senior year research project on integrated couplers for quantum optics
Junior summer researched simulations of condensed matter systems in optical systems in Germany
Freshman summer researched fabrication of microstructures for biomedical applications at home university, gave a poster presentation.

Awards/Honors/Recognitions:   nothing significant, Dean's list, scholarships, research funding awards etc

Special Bonus Points: misc math, physics and cs grad classes, don't think the adcom will figure that out from transcript though


Pertinent Activities or Jobs:  worked in FPGA company during sophomore summer

Applying to Where:

MIT - Ph.D. - EECS -Quantum Computing 

Wisconsin - Ph.D. -ECE  -Quantum Computing (no funding? contacting POI for funding)

UMich - Ph.D. -CSE -Quantum Computing Interviewed haven't heard back

Gatech - Ph.D. -ECE -Quantum Computing 

Duke - Ph.D. -ECE -Quantum Computing 

Berkeley - Ph.D.  - EECS -Quantum Computing  

Stanford - Ph.D. -EE -Quantum Computing  

Harvard - Ph.D. -ECE -Quantum Computing  

Moral of the story, publish or get rejected from big name schools.

Edited by coolgod

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On 3/9/2017 at 11:04 PM, coolgod said:

Moral of the story, publish or get rejected from big name schools.

Not sure if you meant this seriously, but this is not strictly true. I know many students without publications who have been accepted. 

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On 3/10/2017 at 2:04 AM, coolgod said:

Moral of the story, publish or get rejected from big name schools.

I don't think this is true. 

This might have been the bigger issue:

---
"I am interested in researching a very niche part of quantum computing which unfortunately not many professors do. I've seen many guides telling me to apply for schools where there are 2-3 Profs I want to work with in mind, but this is very difficult for me since most schools often only have 1 professor working on something close to my interest. These professors are even sometimes in odd departments where they are the only one working on quantum computing and while the majority researchers are in Physics or CS dept."
---

If a school thinks that there's only one professor you'd be interested in working for, they will probably prioritize fellowship and TA support for students who have at least 2-3 professors they could conceivably work for. You've set yourself up where you need to thread the proverbial needle - get noticed by the one professor you are interested and hope they also just happen to have RA funding available for you right away. If you don't already have a Masters, then your task is even harder. 

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