Does It Really Matter Where You Get Your Master’s?

If you read this blog often, you’d probably think that I’m on the payroll of the American Association of Community Colleges, as strongly and often as I advocate for doing your first two years at a community college.

That’s exactly what Nate did, and he’s kept his student loan debt down to $5,000. Now, he faces the next dilemma — grad school. Can’t get a master’s at community college, after all.

Hey Josh,

I have been subscribed to your postings on an regular basis due to the interesting college information you post so I thought I should throw my questions into the arena. Now, I am a 3rd year college student going to Southern Maine Community College. (Yes, way way out there in the boonies). I will soon have an Associates in Computer technology once I complete my internship, and planning on transferring to a Bachelor Degree level.

Due to some thinking ahead and some planning, I have under 5,000 in debt for 3 years of college which I think is quite good considering I am also paying for dorms and my family is heavily strained on money so I try not to rely on them.

Congrats on outstanding navigation of the college-financing thicket thus far, my friend. $5k in loans after three years of college is impressive indeed.

"WHADDA-YOU WANNA DO WITH YOUR LIFE?" ("I wanna rock" is an acceptable answer.)

Though I am at the point where I have to decide where I want to go to school for my Bach. I am thinking of transferring to University of Southern Maine in Gorham, because they have an degree called Industrial Technology, with an focus in Information and Communications tech, where they will take my primarily focus of computer courses and have me take business management courses as well.

That sounds pretty reasonable. Guys who are business-savvy as well as computer-savvy have a great head start in the business world on those who are only one or the other (or, as is often the case, neither).

Another reason why I want to take this particular degree is that part of courses involve taking an partial minor (4 courses), some of the minors are Accounting, computer science or business administration. I was thinking of aiming at the business administration since it seems to have the most robust courses.

Still, all thumbs-up over this-a-way.

Part of the reason why I am at the Community college for 3 years is because I don’t feel the need to pay $800 a course when I can get them for $400. So when I transfer over, I will have roughly 13-15 courses left to take for my degree. While I think this degree will help me in any job situation, It’s more of what to do after that degree I am concerned about. Since I am at the age of 22, I have no qualms with going into the job market or continuing my education though I am leaning to avoid the job market at the moment.

Yeah, now’s definitely a good time to start thinking along the lines of what you’re going to do when you get out.


I am interested in Robotics, which the University of Maine, Orono recently came out with as a minor. Though I also plan to go to my master’s degree as well. My goal has always been to go for my master degree. I totally admit that it is perfectly normal to not know what to do with my life, which is probably a good thing. I was thinking of taking an master’s in Computer Science with an general focus towards A.I programming, at which school I’m not quite sure.

Let me try to boil this down just a bit: You’re not sure what you want to do for a job once you get out of school, and unless you really quickly discover some career field that you’re super-interested in over the next year or so, you’re inclined to get a master’s degree and wait it out. I think I understand.

Does it really matter which school you go to for your master’s job wise?

It depends on the job, and we’ll have to speak generally here since you haven’t mentioned any specific careers that interest you. Many times, no, it doesn’t — having the master’s is a lot more important than where you got it from. However, read below…

I was thinking of either taking the master’s at USM or UM Orono just to avoid the out of school tuition cost, though I will admit that while I like USM, It isn’t any Harvard type school. and Orono seems to be only a little bit better but boosts another $2000 a year cost. What is the differences really in master programs?

Again, that’s a very general question to which I can only give you some wishy-washy answers, unfortunately (but they’re true!). Master’s degree programs can and do vary widely in terms of their requirements and the academic rigor associated with them. Some focus on academics while some focus on professional preparation. Some let you choose between the two. And that’s just the beginning — I know we’ll get some great comments below from current master’s students who will be able to spell out some of the differences for you in programs like your own. I could spell out a lot of differences between my master’s in journalism at Missouri vs. other master’s programs, but I’m not sure you could really apply those to your situation.

Would going out of state to MIT, or Rochester Institute of tech be better or worth it?

Kudos to you for asking exactly the right question, with special emphasis on the last two words: “worth it.” That’s always the question. I’d be insane to tell you that a master’s from MIT isn’t going to swivel a lot more employers’ heads in your life than a master’s from a state school in Maine. But the question is — is it worth the extra expense? MIT degrees aren’t cheap — graduate tuition is about $40,000 per year. And that could be a bargain for the doors it opens up for you.

But then again, the question remains: do you even care about those opened doors? If you’re looking to really climb the ladders of the profession you choose, then perhaps you do. If you have a more laid-back approach and would like to do your own thing, or do something low-profile that simply pays the bills and allows you to eat Kraft macaroni-and-cheese instead of the store brand (which is a totally fine position, by the way — don’t think for a second that I’m knocking it), then maybe the MIT tuition isn’t worth it for you.

What should I look for when I am looking at master programs? Any light to be shed on the issue would be most helpful.

Well, here’s the thing — all of the answers I *could* give you are dependent on how you think you want to live your life after college. I’m all for minimal student-loan debt and I think you’re exemplary in that regard, and that many, many other readers of this site should take note of what you’ve done. But, that may not be the end of the story for you.

What you should look for in any master’s program is whether it’s going to give you the type of advancement that’s got you seeking the master’s in the first place — and if you’re not seeking any type of advancement — career, intellectual or otherwise — you should check yourself about whether you should be getting a master’s in the first place.

If you’re not sure what you want to do for a career and you’re at the master’s degree crossroads, my generic advice is the same as that of undergrad programs — choose one that gives you a well-rounded education within your subject, because that’ll leave you with the most options (as opposed to a super-specialized degree).

That’s all I’ve got today. What about all you grad-school or grad-school-bound students? What do you think Nate should do? Let us know in the comments below.

35 thoughts on “Does It Really Matter Where You Get Your Master’s?”

  1. Pardon me for bursting in here…I’m a first-timer on this site. ๐Ÿ™‚ Josh has really good information and if I may, I would like to add to it… I was also thinking you could start investigating careers/companies that provide tuition assistance as part of their benefits package. I got my Master’s Degree this way (from a private school in Chicago) and I know many others who have as well. It was a wonderful perk to not have to add that expense to my undergrad debt. Just a thought.

  2. Comp sci is an especially quickly-evolving field, and going to a top school (ESPECIALLY MIT…i don’t go there, but have several connections to it and am amazed at the institutional resources of that place) will make sure that you are learning from people who are themselves at the top of their field. Post-grad recruiting opportunities are also through the roof.

  3. I would say apply many schools at multiple tiers and see what kind of funding packages you’re offered. MIT’s AI program is awesome, so if you can get some big scholarships to reduce tuition, it would probably be worth it.

  4. I’d say do some job shadowing. Look at the Robotics field and Business Admin field or whatever else you may be thinking about, and find out what some possible jobs are and what degrees/background those people have- how they got to there position, etc.

  5. I would just like to point out that people going into computers have many more opportunities to get scholarships than people going into, say, arts education (like me). I would say apply to any school that interests you and see which a) offers you the highest percentage of your tuition paid and b) tries the hardest to make you WANT to go to their school. I did exactly this when applying for my Master’s program, and could not be happier that I did it this way.

  6. Thanks for the responses! Hopefully some other people will provide even more useful insight. I do have an line into the robotics field hopefully, since my Community College has an robotics competition that is going to the MATE competition for the second time in a row this year. I am thinking of getting the team to entering another new England coast competition as well.

    My primarily thinking on computer focus was because I am generally tech savvy, so I might as well capitalize on it. The business part is mostly so I have the knowledge that if I need to – I can run my own department the way a business should be run (as well as how a eagle scout should run things). Hopefully aiming for an project or department manager to be honest.

    Thinking back, probably should have mentioned it the letter, my GPA is between 2.66-3.00, it kind of flutters between those depending upon my grade, so I want to be sure I’m not painting a picture of a Stellar student with no faults class wise.

    thanks for the input and if anyone else wants to add more, please feel free to do so.

  7. As someone who has done all the “don’ts” in the book when it comes to college, I found that where you get your final degree is usually much more important than where you started at. I’ve studied at 4 (count them, FOUR) universities and the only one anyone looks at is the last one: University of Oxford. I’m about to finish my Master’s degree here, and I have to tell you, the name DOES help. I’m going from an arts degree (music) into business which might not have been possible if I had done my masters at the other university I was accepted at. Partly this is because employers assume a certain level of work ethic and prior knowledge that you would have needed to get you into a place like that.

    I know how you feel about student loans too… I have taken out WAY too much as a matter of unfortunate events and then deciding that I would always have wondered if ‘I could have…’ if I didn’t take my place at Oxford. In the end, ask yourself which options would leave you with regrets. I don’t regret the student debt I have (even though I am terrified by it) because it has given me experiences that are absolutely priceless and opened doors to me that I wouldn’t have found elsewhere. I WOULD have regretted not taking my place because I didn’t have funding. That’s just me. You have to make your decision.

  8. I’m also contemplating where to get my master’s in finance for the future as well nate. Seems that you are in an excellent position so I’d recommend that you find a school that accomodates your interests more. If your going for the greater monetary chance then a masters in buisness will help but if you love robotics go for it! Your better off in a field that you will enjoy and make less then go for more money and hate your job.

  9. Once you have graduated and are trying to land a job, where you went to school and your transcripts become very important. Where ever you apply is going to weigh in where you went for school and how well your grades are. So if you can get into an Ivy league school , then go for it and don’t pass the opportunity.

  10. Nate, please take an English class that teaches you the proper use of the indefinite articles “a/an”. Did you notice that I used “an” before the word English? That’s because it starts with a vowel. I lost count as to how many times you misused this very basic usage in your post. Otherwise, you better make sure there is somebody knowledgeable that will proofread your application for your bachelor’s degree. I’m surprised Judge Josh didn’t have anything to say, since grammatical errors are among his cardinal rules in submitting an application, a resume, etc. Good luck.

  11. My advice is not where you go but rather are you driven in what you want to study. Just because you went to an Ivy League school does not guarantee a quality student/graduate/education. The curriculum at any ABET accredited engineering school is the same. The difference is what kind of students are in that program, but why should that matter? What should matter is what YOU think about the education YOU are getting. A lot of these ranks are based off of how much research money is directed to a particular school, which is given by a subjective group of people. The Michelson-Morley experiment, which helped Einstein’s relativity theory to be accepted, was done at what is now Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. Even with this great accomplishment, Case Western is not regarded as highly as MIT or RIT. This only proves that the notion that Ivy League schools give you a quality education is just wrong. What gives a person a quality education is the person’s drive and attitude towards learning. Find the environment that you think will allow you to grow. MIT might not be the best environment for you, and maybe a state school is.

    If you are worried about finding a job, remember that you’re trying to find your first job, not your dream job. A lot of great CEOs, scientists, engineers, actors, journalists, etc. started at some small company or organization as their stepping stone to being great. But what got them there, was their motivation at being successful.

  12. Hey Nate,
    You said, “Though I am at the point where I have to decide where I want to go to school for my Bach.” and then you go on to say, “Does it really matter which school you go to for your masterโ€™s job wise?” I don’t understand why you want to get a Master’s degree when you haven’t even STARTED on a Bachelor’s or FINISHED your Associates. Second, do you know what kind of career you want to get into after you graduate? When you do know this, then you can narrow down your choice of schools depending on what programs they have fit for your career choice. Finally I have to add that internships and even working a job related to your major will not hurt you. You might want to do something like that to make your application (no matter where you want to go for Bachelor’s/Master’s) more competitive. Sometimes it’s more about the experience and not the school’s name!

    Good luck!

  13. If you can go to MIT go for it. The tuition will be expensive, but the perks will be amazing. The connects and the Alumni network you will have as resources from MIT will really set you over the top. That’s not to say if you don’t go to MIT you can’t do well, but I think you’ll be very pleased with the resources a top school like MIT will afford you. I personally came from a small state school and now go to a tier one school for grad school. Although I love my undergrad the opportunities that have been made available to me while at my grad school are like day and night when I compare it to my undergrad, it’s totally worth it.

  14. @Allyson
    Thank you for the wonderful Input. I shall keep that in mind. I am not particularly threatened by student loans, though I consider them like Credit Cards. If you can get by without them, all the more power to you as I say. It’s very hard to decide where to go because my interests haven’t flared up in any particular direction other than “I like computers” and “robotics”.

    @ Terry.

    I apologize, It’s a old habit of mine that has somehow survived thru the years. I actually did take my English classes already and yes I do proof-read my work (and have others as well). However the level I apply depends upon where I am submitting it to. To be honest, You are not the first and likely, not the last person that will probably inform me of this.

    You may think ill of me for this, but for this level of communication, this is more of a conversation. I would proof-read more thoroughly rather then skimming if this was a 5 paragraph essay or writing a very detailed computer how to.

    As you probably can tell from my writing in general, conversationally, I am a very laid back person in that regard. Though 7 grammar mistakes isn’t something I am proud of, it is not necessary something I am worried about when speaking in a informal conversational manner. Had I know that MLA standard was required, I would have done it.

    Of course, nothing you said was wrong either (you are right) and I shall keep that in mind for the future.

  15. Do your research — look into MIT’s available programs and look at the other schools as well. Read the work that is being produced by the graduates and the professors. Figure out which school sparks something for you and then apply to both,,,apply for both admittance and funding, research fellowships… there is graduate money out there you just need to find it.

  16. just apply to schools that you can afford…as long as they provide almost the same course its ok..but sometimes it matters where you got your masters…i.e the reputation of the school…anyway why waste money while someone is doing the exact course at a lower tuition fee at another school??

  17. Bad grammar won’t get you anywhere. MIT would obviously be “worth it”… I mean how can you even doubt that considering you want a tech degree? Student loans are a part and parcel of student life and once you get a job, you can always pay them off!

  18. Coming from a science administration background, I just want to point out that in the slight chance that you may decide to remain in academia after grad school, a top school is the way to go. Business and computer science will be a great marriage for the education field. While a master’s will not allow you to become a professor, there is a lot of room there for administration as well as other positions in academia. Even assistant researchers in compsci can have a lot of opportunities if they chose a good school. If you’re out to the rest of the world, then you will get a job. But in academia, pick the best name.

  19. In in the same masters grad boat I currently attend a&m college station and they offer the masters I want but in turf management but for my true dream I want to transfer to ksu for crop management its best to choose the school that has your preferred degree program.

  20. A few things…MIT and RIT are not Ivy League schools. They are often included as “Ivy-Plus” lists, along with top state schools (UCLA and Berkeley) and top private schools (Stanford, Vanderbilt, Duke, etc.). These are the kind of nit-picky conversations you must prepare yourself for in the higher reaches of academia.

    I also have a question for you…have you confirmed that you can finish your BA in one year with your potential schools? I’ve attended several public and private universities in my long road to finishing my BA in the 30s and all of them set a cap for transfer units at 60 credits or thereabouts. That was even true for state universities with articulation agreements with state community colleges. I’m a champion of community college — 35 of my 60 transfer credits to the Columbia, where I ultimately graduated from, were from my $50/semester community college — that’s about $9/class plus books, no debt! However, make sure your assumptions about transferability are correct. You may be required to retake courses simply because the undergraduate schools will only take a certain number of transfer credits or, worse, will only accept certain courses or lower division courses as transferable.

    For example, when I arrived at Columbia, we were told we had to take our quantitative requirement there. No other classes would count, “not even if you took it at MIT.” Such is the snobbery at these types of schools! The “quantitative” class wasn’t even mathematically rigorous, it was a sociology class (and not statistics, which I’d already taken). Nevertheless, the requirement was written in stone. Confirm with your potential departments if you can graduate in 1 year — some schools have minimum unit or semesters/quarters of residency so that, even with enough credits, you cannot graduate any earlier.

    As for a Master’s, I saw far too many too young people going to grad school. It’s a big commitment and expense if you don’t know who you are and what you want to be yet. Getting on the job experience through an internship, as others have advised, is a great idea and something you might be able to do now, before transferring.

    Although I asked a million questions before Columbia and again before grad school, there are often unforeseen quirky rules that can derail you. Try to get as much as you can in writing and take notes when you speak with admissions and financial aid officers.

    I don’t want to discourage you, but hope this will give you questions you didn’t think of yet to avoid disaster. Schools like MIT often have full ride scholarships (though I saw this more at the undergrad level than graduate), but you can’t get them if you don’t apply for admission in the first place. Some schools also show a preference for their own alumni in graduate admissions and funding, look into that.

    Finally, if there is an opportunity to write an essay about your financial/family situation, do it! My essay and a few phone calls clarifying my financial situation, first generation college student status, debt load and inability to borrow private loans garnered a full tuition and health insurance scholarship at Columbia. I wished for that, but didn’t really know how possible it is. You never know!

    P.S. Also look into the McNair Fellows program. You can apply as an undergrad, if your school has a program. Some of the perks include mentorship as an undergrad, funded summer research as an undergrad, GRE fee waiver, GRE prep course, fee waivers for graduate admissions applications (even schools without McNair programs usually honor this) and graduate tuition and living stipend from schools with McNair programs.

  21. The undergrad program at USM sounds neato, I’d go that route, because it seems like it would open up varying carrer opportunities.

    I suggest you finish your BS and then get out and work for a few years and then head to grad school. That is what I did, and boy am I glad I did. My MS is in a completely different field than my BS and I really enjoyed my graduate studies. You may find that you don’t want to do what you thought you did, and then you can shift your focus for grad school,

  22. I’d like to point out that that for a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from MIT, if you do research or are a teaching assistant they will wave the tuition cost and provide a modest stipend. I believe this is also true of most other MIT graduate programs. Also, if you are in a science related field there are opportunities for corporate sponsorship.

  23. Nate – I am a Computer Forensics major at a 4yr private college. I attended a Community College prior, where I received my Associates and a Letter of Recognition (which is just short of a Certificate. I was about to transfer, and didn’t have time for the last 2 classes:] ). You need to apply to multiple places. With transferring, you tend to get a lot of financial assistance, because you have already proven yourself in the world of higher academics. But just so you know, I can just about guarantee that you will have to retake a lot of your classes. I am from Maryland, and we have a CC to 4yr University transfer program, where colleges that participate guarantee the transfer of CC classes (Most accept max 50 credits transferred, mine accepted 70). All of my classes did transfer, but every class in my major I was forced to retake, as many colleges require you to take all of those at their institution. I had even asked point blank about this, and was told I would be granted an exception if I transferred, which was later withdrawn as a “miscommunication on my advisor’s part.” Be prepared for this to happen, and expect to have to go to a 4yr school for 3 years. I am friends with a lot of transfers to a variety of different schools, and it is generally accepted that for every transfer, you add a year onto your expected graduation date. Also, I have 2 jobs – my part-time offers a certain amount reimbursed for classes of a C+ or higher were achieved, and my full-time offers full reimbursement up to 10k per calender year where a B- or higher were achieved. This, while making my senior year more hectic, greatly relieves the financial burden and stress. They will also pay for my Master’s degree. Computer degrees are greatly sought after, and a vast majority of companies love to employ an undergrad and pay for their schooling, because most undergrads will make an intern’s pay (30k-40k) until they receive their degree. Look into it. It is well worth checking out. Good luck!

  24. Don’t necessarily count yourself out because of the tuition rate – promising students can sometimes get a graduate assistantship or a graduate fellowship from their department. The assistantship usually involved 10-20 hours of work per week while the fellowship normally doesn’t involve any work. Both of these options usually include a stipend and a tuition waiver!

    Also, if you are interested in more than one program at a particular school – look into both of them. Lots of people now are completing a graduate certificate along with their master’s degree – or completing more than one master’s degree. While a degree from MIT may get attention, having a MBA with a graduate certificate (or second master’s) in project management doesn’t look bad either! There are lots of options out there – just make sure you explore them early so you have time to complete all of the necessary requirements without adding time to your graduate studied!

  25. Nate,
    I was very surprised by the grammar errors. Found it distracting and I rather guessed you were not a student with a high G.P.A because of improper grammar. In conversation it is just as important as in writing. It is a habit and I agree with Terry, BREAK IT!

    Denise and Amelia noticed the comment about finishing your Bachelor’s and only having about 15 credits. Wrong! Finish your Bachelor’s degree first. It will take you about 2-3 years unless you go over the summer. Do it if you can.

    Pell grant does not pay for it but if you apply for it for other semesters you may have enough left over to pay for summer. I earned my Bachelor’s degree without any loans and only spent about four hundred dollars ($400.00) for the entire five years it took me going part time. Have you applied for a Pell grant. It is based on parents income until you are 24 years old. I am adult, married and with four children (3 at home during college) and one daughter had the same teachers as I had at the community college that I had at Florida State U. at night.

    Transfer credits. The university will accept a transfer of an Associate Degree. That is a 60 credit degree. ( At least here) It is nice to have a few extra but not too many. The university doesn’t usually accept orientation credit, etc. However the university makes it mandatory to have a student earn 60 credits form them for another reason other than financial. How can the university award you a Bachelors degree if you do not attend it enough for them to claim you? That is how it was explained to me. I only had about 70 credits. Lost a few but had to attend another economics class for my major at a community college while attending FSU.

    Maine
    We travel to Mt. Desert Island about every other year as my husband’s family still have a home there. Beautiful place and Maniacs are wonderful people. Lobster and lobster again while we are there.

    Good luck. I think the idea of getting your Bachelor’s degree and then working a year or two to get a handle on what you want to do is a good idea especially since you are so young. If you are truly thinking about MIT, look at the average age of students that attend. My stepbrother attended MIT and moved his entire family to Boston for the year that he was there for his Master’s. My understanding is that a Master’s degree is NOT 60 credits and therefore does not require the same amount of time.

  26. I was not sure my message would post and did not proof read as I should have. After discussing grammatical errors I noticed in fourth paragraph a spelling error (‘form’ instead of ‘for’ )and a little tweaking was necessary to make third paragraph possibly a little more clear.

    Sorry! Good luck to you and get clarification now about the credits for the university.

  27. To: ColumAlum, tm, Amelia, and Anonymous

    Been checking up on this to see if there was any more comments added. Thank you for the Valuable advice and I shall look and take great consideration towards the advice you have given. It has risen several options that I did not think of doing and I shall check them out. Thanks again.

    To Deborah,

    I would like to Clarify something. You can’t make the connection that I have a poor GPA just because my grammar is poor, that is a silly conclusion. Please don’t make judgments based upon information you do not have (and no, I have not discussed why I have a low GPA) and especially information you have read wrong. In my letter, I said 15 courses – not credits – and that is roughly 45 credit hours that I still need to do.

    I already have been Chatting with USM and University of Maine: Orono for the past year or so. They are fully aware of my situation and have even suggested I do this. While I do appreciate the input I suggest re-reading things to make sure you have things straight. I don’t mean to be harsh just saying how things are.

  28. Suzanne Zwecker

    I transferred to Rochester Institute of Technology from a local community college (Finger Lakes) and everything transferred. I did not have to repeat anything and needed only one year (3 quarters, 4 classes each quarter – RIT doesn’t do semesters) to get my BS in biotech. At least in this field RIT is very generous with transfer credit. I was very well prepared and made the Dean’s list. Check with different universities about transfer credits because there might be others similarly generous. It probably helps to have great grades, but even without it is well worth investigating. Good luck.

  29. The most important thing for me when choosing my masters in engineering was what the classes covered. If I wasn’t interested in what was being taught I would not have selected the school I did, I would have been paying (or my employer as was the case) for someone to bore the living c*** out of me for 2 hours twice a week for 5 years. The most important thing is that you take classes and do projects and write a thesis in areas that you are passionate about, areas you enjoy and make you want to get up in the morning for that 8am class/meeting. After that, yes look at prices of places you’ve decided you like, work out the logistics of what you can afford of the schools that sound fun and interesting and challenging. State schools are not bad ideas at all, and sometimes the best bet is to find a good state school that is surrounded by businesses that you wouldn’t mind working for. An engineering student might like Portland State because of Intel and Tektronix in the backyard for example.

  30. CommColl Girl

    Nate-
    I’ll jump on the bandwagon and agree that you need to correct your grammar and not just because you are a gentleman. You need to be mindful that you are now a scholar working towards being an employee, hopefully a highly paid one. It’s possible that you will encounter people that can influence your career and they may be put-off by your grammar and your defensive stance. Yes, this is conversational, but Josh is a scholarship judge. You are already in contact with someone who could potentially affect the course of your life. Put your best face forward, all the time. Proper grammar should be second nature to someone who is considering upper level universities, even in conversation. And all you really have to do is write things in Word before you post/email.

    As for your choice of schools, a good rule of thumb is to not take on more student loan debt than you can expect to make in your first year working. If you honestly think you will land an $80,000/year job out of the gate, go for it! If you think you will start lower, then take care how much debt you rack up.

    Good luck!

  31. Worcester Polytechnic Institute has a major in Robotics (the only one in the country), and I’m nearly positive they have a post-grad track for it too. Just sayin’. I’m the proud cousin of a student there, so I gotta represent ๐Ÿ˜‰

  32. Screw the grammar, why is everyone capitalizing on that? He has already said that he’s a better writer when it counts, i do the same thing. I write differently when i am writing to a friend and a professor, whatever. ANYway, Nate, I also had the same problem, I got accepted to a Master’s program with a ‘good reputation’ and another where it seemed like the PERFECT fit for me. So i wondered if it mattered where i received my Masters. I wanted to go to the one with the good reputation, but many people made me realize that the other program has exactly what i was looking for and more, and that i shouldn’t screw up the opportunity of getting exactly what i wanted for a school with a good reputation and only half of what i wanted. So i decided to accept placement at the other school and do not regret it one bit.
    Definitely apply everywhere and see the financial packet you get (like someone up there said) and then out of those, see which has what you want the most. Oh and definitely figure out what you wanna do first, wouldn’t want you to regret a degree that didn’t have all of what you needed or wanted.

    ps. Good stuff on the loans, now you wont have to worry about a crap load of undergrad loans and grad loans adding up. I managed to get through my undergrad degree (at UMass Boston) without any loans. So i now only have to worry about grad school loans in the future. Not to shabby.

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