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another Mines vs CU thread

Discussion in 'The West' started by axlvid23, Nov 25, 2005.

  1. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    Well, It's nearing decision time. I know there's been previous threads on this but my question is geared a bit differently. I've been accepted to both schools and the amount of financial aid I'll be recieving from both schools will be close to identical (not very much). I've heard the statistics regarding mine's unusually high suicide rate and whatever and I know CU still holds somewhat of a slacker, party reputation (which I'm sure is far from the truth for engineering types and the large portion of the general student population). I know the bike riding situations for each and I'm fine with both...So basically I'd like to hear first person accounts from people of each school, likes/dislikes, thoughts on the school/curriculum, things to do at each location, social aspects, stuff like that.

    Any help/suggestions provided are appreciated. word.

    -Alex
     

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  2. DirtyDog

    DirtyDog Gang probed by the Golden Banana

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    What's more important to you, partying or a world class education and career to match? I'd give my left nut to go to Mines.
     
  3. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    I goto Mines. I was thinking I could at least do some small rides couple of times a week. And honestly, if I blow off a couple of hours from homework, I prob could. But Here's my schedule for most days: I wake up at 5:00am, do HW till class time (around 8:00am). I'm carrying only 14 h right now (soon to be 16.5) and have 1/2 of Tues and almost all of Thurs off so my days on Mon, Wed, and Fri are about 6 hours in class w/ a 2 hour break in the middle for lunch. When I get home, I try to pop off a couple of hours more HW till dinner time. Since I wake up so early, my brain starts to shut down at around 7:00pm, but occasionally I'll still code (Comp Sci major) till about 10:00pm. This is a pretty typical day for me.
    Now, you're prob about 18 or 19 so the social thing is going to be pretty important for you. Effectively I don't have a social life, but I'm 35 and it doesn't bother me in the least. By the way, my grades are in the mid to high B range. I'm prob not the most gifted student, but I don't think I'm a slouch either.
    Just FYI, I bombed out of CU back in 88 when I was 18. Between all the hotties, and parties, there's too many distractions there for me. But, that's just me. I started to smoke (4/20, but have since quit), started to visit the ski areas a LOT (resulted in a 15 year stint in Steamboat as a ski bum) and was just generally being an idiot when I went to CU.

    Good luck maing...
     
  4. ladge

    ladge Chimp

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    Hmm, it seems like you have your first growing up decision to make. While life has no guarantees, the more diligence required at Mines should pay off more in the long run.

    If you were accepted into Mines that is no cheeseball accomplishment. CU is still a good school, and definitely a fun place, but academically it doesn't equal what Mines offers. I had to chose between Mines, CSU, and CU. Mines is no s**t. During freshman admission, they blatently pointed out that over 1 out of 3 students will not make it to graduation (not due to suicide though). Additionally, they work you like a dog. They typically require more credit hours to graduate than most schools. Engineering Physics was a 130+ credit hour degree. The classes are tough also. When I went, Campus magazine had rated the top ten hardest classes (undergraduate) in the US. I remember at least two classes were from Mines - Thermodynamics (Thermo-satanics average test scores were 25%) and Physics II - Electricity and Magnetism. I don't point this out to turn you away from the school, just to prepare you.

    You should have time to squeeze out a few mtb rides at Mines. I say that because I had a full load of classes plus played on the soccer team which required nightly practice. I could have easily biked instead if I was into biking that much then. Literally, in about a 1-2 minute ride from the Green center you can hook up with that singletrack trail by the soccer fields that will take you up Chimney Gulch, over to Apex, down through Enchanted forest, finishing with some mild urban with chances to take some 3-4 foot drops. There are other close-by trails as well. Of course CU has trails nearby too.

    I don't know personally how much the school has changed since I went almost 17 years ago, but people I've met who graduated later on have led me to believe the school hasn't changed much, except that there is a larger percentage of females now then when I went.

    Good luck with your decision!
     
  5. dcamp29

    dcamp29 Monkey

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    alex, first of all congratulations on getting accepted to both schools. i was as well and you probably know i chose CU for a number of reasons. first and foremost was the fact that i couldn't keep up at mines and ride and do other stuff. read pau11y's post-sounds like a ****load of work. i usually do 15 hrs of homework a week, so i can still ride, etc. also i think CU has a good engineering school, but it is no where near what mines can offer you, but again i couldn't handle it. and also you have to look at the campus and surroundings, where CU is much better in my opinion. either way theyre both good schools, and you can't really go wrong.
     
  6. Beast

    Beast Turbo Monkey

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    I was in the same situation a few years back - between CU and Mines, same $ coming from each school/scholarships, and needed more info. So, Alex, I'll help you out by tagging on another vote for mines.

    College is what you make of it - if you a dying to go to parties every weekend (thurs-sun), there is always something happening, somewhere, and it's not hard to find out what's going down. If you're not looking for that all the time, you're not surrounded by it, so it's not an issue.

    I have had an absolute blast of a time at mines, and surprisingly, the school hasn't been anywhere near as taxing as everyone makes it out to be. I honestly only spend about 6-8 hours a week doing homework, have a low A average, and am carrying 18.5 credit hours a semester. I'm on the atypical 5 year plan at mines (master's degree in 5) and think I can pull it off in 4 and a half years instead. I'll admit, I've had my struggles with a class or two, but the mentality that you're going to be cooped up in your room 24-7 is far from what I've experienced. I've got thursdays off this semester, and next semester I have both tuesdays and thursdays off, but mondays, wednesdays, and fridays are going to be long ones. I am very busy, however, because I am running the cycling club, racing, planning the spring road race (which should have HUGE numbers this year), working at the outdoor recreation center, live with 4 others who are always wanting to go do something, and have a girlfriend that goes to DU (meaning frequent drive time in Denver traffic, bleh - but she's definitely worth it :) ).

    The hands-on and insanely in-depth approaches that this school takes are the main educational reasons why I'm glad I came to mines. I mean, it's going to pay off knowing why things work the way they do, how to make them tick, AND how to improve them - not just 2 of the 3. Your first semester will probably be a shock to your system, mine certainly was grade wise. However, it only takes a portion of that first semester to adjust completely and get things under control.

    Socially - if you like quiet and you're going to live on campus, apply for housing at weaver towers. If otherwise, ask for any of the three others on campus (not mines park, although if you'd like an apartment, that is the way to go. It would just be a bit harder to branch out.). I lived in Weaver my first semester last year and couldn't stand how quiet it was living in a suite, so I asked to move to one of the other dorms (Randall Hall) where all of my buddies lived. There is nothing quite like walking out of your room at nearly any time of the day and having 6 other doors open down the hall and people to hang out with. Live with someone you don't know - you'll meet a whole new crew of friends that way rather than the three kids that came from your high school.

    Avoid some of the cafeteria food (as with any college, discretion is advised. Make friends with the caf workers - you'll get the hookups!), bring a pillow to NHV and earth/environmental systems lectures, be prepared to fail you first test horribly, and join the cycling club! Our house is just a few blocks off campus and you're always welcome to come hang out - big screen, air hockey, golf, basketball, a fire pit, and all the bikes you can handle!

    Good luck Alex.
     
  7. caputo1989

    caputo1989 Turbo Monkey

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    Mines has 2 sister schools in AUSTRAILIA. Oh yea.

    CU can suck me dry.
     
  8. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    Oh, BTW Alex, I'm a dual major, Comp Sci and Electrical Engineering. The Beast and I are in different grade levels (I think), and I think he's a Mech E major. I'm still trying to get thru the weedout classes of freshmen thru mid sophomore. I transferred into Mines from CMC in Steamboat Springs. And as described by The Beast, I was fortunate enough to have had my Physics I & II transfer credit accepted (I was 1/2 thru Physics III - junior level class - when I was made aware that it isn't a required course for EE as I had thought - I dropped it and took a W; was at a B+ in that class before the drop w/ very LITTLE studying...). So, by that experience alone (not saying it's accurate), I think once you get past the weedout classes, things will mellow out a bit.
    I'll be in Thermo next semester, along w/ Circuits, Linear Algebra and Statics. From the reports of my classmates in Diff Eq, Statics is kind of a bitch, but totally do-able if you're solid on Physics I & II.

    Edit: Apparently, from reports, Calc I & II and Physics I & II are the killer weedout classes. My Calc III instructor (which I also was given credit for but decided to repeat since mine was over 4 years old from CMC) had mentioned the fail rate of Calc I & II was frightening...fyi

    Edit II: don't let what I'm saying here about Mines scare you off. I think CU is a good school. Several of my buds from CMC went/grad from CU. But honestly at about 1/10th the student population of CU, I think Mines grads will hand CU grads academic ass to them on a paper plate. Also, when I entered (this past fall), the admissions lady told me there was 100% placement for the grad class of 2004.
     
  9. Beast

    Beast Turbo Monkey

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    Paully nailed it on the head - I'm a mechanical major and I'm going for my master's in engineering technology and management. They have a concurrent program which allows you to work toward both your b.s. degree and your m.s. degree while still an undergrad.

    To be honest, as with most schools, your homework load is dependent on your proffesors and varies from class to class. Ask around and people will fill you in on the best proffesors, those whose students tend to get the highest grades on exams.

    Physics II will give you a good scare, but works out in the end if you stick with it. If you are on the honors route (having taken AP calc in high school and gotten a 5), you'll be in good shape come calc II and III honors.

    Don't drop classes or fail them - you will get behind and to the point where your class selection from semester to semester is very limited because each class builds off of the previous one (pre/co reqs). I've seen this happen to a couple of kids. They do have some sort of tutor(ish) program to help out freshmen and sophomores with the basic classes. Although I've never attended it, it's pretty highly recommended.

    O! We now have a mountain biking class, thanks to the cycling club's advisor. In addition, I'm setting it up so that club members will get gym credit for showing up to weekly rides. Pretty good bonus I suppose.

    Dave was right - our campus is a bit on the ugly side and we like to decorate with rocks that have had several core samples taken from them (haha). Golden is a blast to live in and I could never see myself living in Boulder. I used to live in Denver and I still can't see it happening.

    Paully - Good luck with thermo and I'll see you in circuits if you're scheduled with Ammerman (by far the most recommended circuits prof, hint hint). I'm in statics right now and it's time consuming (constitutes 4 hours a week of my 6-8), but very easy and step by step - nothing is rushed. Physics II doesn't play into it at all, just some of the basics from Physics I. I'm a junior by credits and a sophomore by actual attendance (came in with AP credits from high school). I'll be in mechanics of materials, advanced eng. math, prob stats, circuits, human systems, mel 1, and, of course, mtn biking next semester. Cya around bud!
     
  10. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    Wow, Mines or CU. The reminder of going to school is scarry. I have a degree in Electrical Engineering, and thank gawd I made it through everything with passing grades.

    There was a report that the hottest engineering degree is petroleum engineering... Mines has it I think.

    Regardless, Golden is a fun place to hang out (Live here). I trials ride, do a lot of local mtn riding (without having to drive there), and townie ride to the local brewery (not Coors either). Fun spot.

    Boulder= too big, over-rated.
     
  11. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    Here's my spring semester schedule. Notice the afternoons off :D
    I'll be taking my EPIC151 in the summer. I also have to work in Nature/Human Values (short form) one of these semesters. Nothing's built on this so I'm thinking of putting it off till the end when I try for a BioMed minor.

     
  12. dcamp29

    dcamp29 Monkey

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    yo first of all, Pau11y and Beast are rediculous- double majors and all, im just going mech E and its probably going to take me an extra semester.

    and if youre going to mines-go petroleum style, if you can graduate you get like 80-90 thousand with signing bounuses and a guaranteed job. that article was in the paper. it caused my buddy's older brother to switch from civil to petrol at mines(he has a 4.0)
     
  13. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    First off, thanks to all, I'm starting to get a better idea of what I'm really looking at in terms of the two different schools...There's only so much information you can squeeze out of campus tours and websites and so on.

    Brandon- It's good to hear your perspective of mines as it is easily the most positive I've heard...but you're absolutely right, college is what you make of it. I am definitely at least somewhat of social person so I'm glad to hear the stereotype that mines is about the least interesting place on earth, broken. Again, thanks for the pointers man and I'm stoked to see what you've done with the cycling club!

    Ladge & Pau11y- I suppose it's good to hear the worst case scenerio as well as a reinforcement of how good of an engineering school mines is...thanks fer the help, it's appreciated.

    Dave- thansk for the congrats, sounds like the CU eng school is still pretty demanding, 15 hours of homework isn't a small amount by any means. And word, it's a way nicer campus/location. I realized today that I'd go to mines no questions asked if it resided in boulder and the ultra-nice campus, plus gunbarrell and the fix all within a short car trip/ride; hell yeah.

    Now, more academically speaking, I've heard that CU engineering students are better rounded as business people and so on versus at mines students are more competent technically speaking. Now for those of you already in the workforce, would the benefit of being better rounded academically be of better use down the road? Or is what I've heard complete BS and Mines students are just as well rounded? thanks in advance...hopefully that question made sense.

    again, thanks for all your help.
     
  14. Logchucker

    Logchucker Chimp

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    Consider yourself lucky they changes the linear algebra teacher, that class sucked.

    I currently am enrolled in 22.5 credit hours, and its taken its toll, I'll finish with above a 2,8 probably a 3 but it was really difficult. I'm a double major on a 4 year plan at mines. Its tough let no one tell you it is not, I really do at least 20-30 hours of home work a week in normal times, more if I need to. But I got invovled and it helps, plus I do try to balance everything. Mines is where I chose because I Want to have no regrets on whether or not I took the hardest path I could. Its what you make of it, if you want to be here you'll know it. And if not you can change schools, no shame in it
     
  15. Jabuttri

    Jabuttri Monkey

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    HaHa one of my friends is an engineering student at CU. He finds plenty of time to get drunk and party
     
  16. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    I'm sure time for such tomfoolery could be found at either school:thumb: ...However, that's not to say that is what I'm looking for in a college experience by any stretch of the imagination.

    I'd also like to say that Lockchucker is a crazy mofo, I would be lucky to finish a single major bs in 4 years. Though I agree with what you're saying; if it's not the place for me, I can always transfer. I'm sure that nearly all reputable colleges will take transfer credit from mines.

    thanks again,

    -Alex
     
  17. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    Holy Mother of GOD dude!
    Hey have you heard anything of Willie Herman for Linear Algebra? I guess that's who I'm getting for next semester.
     
  18. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    It really depends on you. I went through engineering avoiding as much business as possible (thought it was below me). Now that I'm out, I find the technical details boring. I've taken my EE degree and have entered sales with it. Based on 5 years of EE type work, the monotony of designing circuits in a cube was killing me. I am an extraverted person, and wanted to see customers, and help them along. ...now, I'm in Sales, selling EE software to huge companies (intel, Motorola, etc.). If I were still doing EE work, I'd be making 75k or so by now (a friend of mine is still in it). But I'm making twice that, have a more flexible schedule, and travel more. Its sales, but its a blast.
    ---however, I wished I had taken more business based classes. I still can do my own education of business to understand how things work.

    Yes, I think CU has more to offer in the lines of business classes. In my opinion, you'd be more marketable if you had an engineering degree with more business savoy knowledge. Being all techy isn't bad, but it can limit you if you want to move on to other things (management, director's, etc). Most business majors are clueless about any given business vertical.... (They lack experience in 'x' industry). Eventually, they get the momentum and start making names for themselves.

    Engineering BS and a Business BA can be the best things to have (together). Double majoring in 2 engineering disciplines isn't that hard, just more time (You get a minor in math by default with a BS in Engineering). Adding a few more classes can get you almost a 2 for 1.
     
  19. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    BTW, Please don't base your decision on "Close to the Fix" or "Close to GunBarrel". If you have car, drive. Want some mtn bike trails? Stay away from Boulder county. Golden is cheaper (Although not much), and more accessible to Denver/Boulder/mountains, etc.

    Base your decision on the acedemics and the school. CU doesn't have that great of reputation right now (Racism, football rape program, odd professors, drinking and dieing)... Corporations will look at where you went, and the rep doesn't help.

    Mines hasn't had near the controversy.
     
  20. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    You know, the suicide thing was news to me, but I guess I can see it. My guess is you'll find that at any highly ranked school, what w/ the pressure to achieve and all...
     
  21. SkaredShtles

    SkaredShtles I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!

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    What's knowledge about cabbage got to do with any of this?? :p
     
  22. Pau11y

    Pau11y Turbo Monkey

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    You goto Mines to increase your cabbage earning potential :D
     
  23. kicknitLivE

    kicknitLivE Monkey

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    The ladies man, the ladies. CU kills in this department. If mines had ladies this hot the suicide rate would be way, WAY lower. Im missing the warm weather and lack of attire.

    Surprised how crappy the riding is here in Boulder. Im going to make some headway with trials I think.
     
  24. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    I know it...Mines with its 4-1 male to female ratio does not help the general student psyche one bit.
     
  25. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    Oh I completely agree, I just mentioned gunbarrel and fix to agree with dave in that the location and campus are nicer than mines. The decision is definitely based completely on academics and where I will be happiest I attended in the future.

    Thanks for the imput regarding usefullness of business knowledge in the engineering field...those are definitely some things to consider. It sounds worthwhile to look into doing the engineering bs and business ba thing...which it sounds like would give me some options once I got out of school...which would be far more convenient at CU...but again, as you noted, CU's reputation is less than good and seeing as that I'm confined to in-state schools, it makes the school decision fairly difficult.

    thanks again,

    alex
     
  26. kicknitLivE

    kicknitLivE Monkey

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    I don't think there is any question that CU has a strong academic reputation (while at the same time having a party school reputation). If you ever leave Colorado to find a job, you will find that more people have heard of CU.

    This is especially relevent when considering the strengths of CU; business and engineering. I am in the ME program and I also have a BS in Biology from UC San Diego ( A very tough and highly rated school). I can honestly say that the Engineering program at CU is far more involved (hands on), and at least as demanding.

    I have already taken part in designing an aluminum roll cage and TIG welded it all in the first semester. I have also mastered the solidworks 3D modeling program. Heres my latest, though it needs a larger main pivot.
     

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  27. Beast

    Beast Turbo Monkey

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    That is essentially what I am doing here at Mines, just to the next level - an Engineering B.S. with the Engineering Technology and Management M.S. (strong business ties applied to engineering field)
     
  28. Mike Buell

    Mike Buell Monkey

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    when I was deciding on schools it came down to Mines and CU for me as well. I was really leaning towards mines for a while, those of you who know me probably cant see that. When it came down to time to make the final choice I went with CU mainly because I decided that I really didn't want to work that hard. So I went with the business school at CU i'm having a greate time, i'm learning a tone, and I couldn't be happier with my choice.

    For you in regards with making your choice you have to think about what you want to get out of your time at school and what you want your degree to mean when you are done. If you go to mines and graduate, you will get a good job. Probably the same with an engineering degree from CU, but depends on the field how much prestiege it carries.

    Or if your like me and can't ever see yourself working a seriouse 9-5 engineering job, go into business, and have no life plans besides trying to become a successful pro bike racer.
     
  29. SkaredShtles

    SkaredShtles I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!

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    Man - you guys are all gonna get out of college and realize that having fun is way more important than raking in the cabbage.............. :D

    Except maybe Pau11y. He probably already realizes it.
     
  30. Beast

    Beast Turbo Monkey

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    Oddly enough, I see some potential in that for ya
     
  31. SkaredShtles

    SkaredShtles I love NEWCASTLE and will ONLY drink NEWCASTLE!!!!

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    Bingo!

     
  32. Beast

    Beast Turbo Monkey

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  33. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    Not to burst your bubble, but that design is already patented by Specialized. ;)
     
  34. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    9-5.... HAA HAA haa haa haaa!!!! that's funny.... really funny...LOL!

    Try 60-70 hour weeks.... seriously. This is why I went from Engineering into sales. I make more cabbage, more flexibility (and I do work extra hours here and there).
     
  35. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    When I hear thing's like this it leads me to believe that I will most likely burn out of the engineering field and become a penniless ski and bike riding bum who lives in a glorified tent at the base of rabbit ears pass. So what's the point of this thread, really. It's because of this I think I'm going to wind up at CU, so I can double major in business and mechanical engineering (all my sources say this is possible, so please correct me if you know otherwise.) and have some very well rounded career choices. I know Brandon is doing the Mines version of this, but somehow I just don't think it's going to be as versatile (maybe brandon can prove me wrong?). Well, as always thanks fer the imput, it's helped a ton.

    -alex
     
  36. Ascentrek

    Ascentrek Monkey

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    Honestly, it all depends on what you want out of a job. Engineering will give you a wonderful background to have. With any engineering degree, you can do so many things. I had had it with cubicals, but I also chose to design circuits. Many EE's I know went on to other things... and therefore was the reason I went into sales (You can't do what I'm doing without an Engineering background).

    Honestly, you'll find the job you want within a few years after college anyway. I'm not a fan of boulder, but the diversity is there. Its not like an employer will hire you based on where you went. Its all based on how you interview and who you are. I went to Wichita State University for gawd's sakes.... no one cared that I did.

    I like the business aspects of CU, if you could minor in business, you'd be the bomb.

    I like the Trials riding on CU campus. I like the hot chicks... however, the hot chicks are evil, and the night life has a lot to be desired (Denver is where I'd hang...). Golden doesn't have night life; unless you know me, in which I drink beer and watch bike videos in my home theater (woo hoo).

    Either way, you're doing the right thing. If you land in Golden, we'll hook up and do some riding. If you land in Boulder, we may do some riding.
     
  37. Logchucker

    Logchucker Chimp

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    I interned for a Mines Chemical Engineer Grad who now is part of a quarter Billon dollar mangement team at Merrill LYnch
     
  38. neversummersnow

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    Congrats on your acceptance Alex. I had no doubts you'de get into both.

    My thoughts on the subject are as follows.

    People act as if the degree they get in college completly dictates everything post college. They often forget the underlying and most important variable here IS the PERSON.

    Don't get me wrong, the degree and institution are very very important and Mines is world class for engineers but don't act like if you go through CU you're always going to be one step behind the Mines guys. In the end it comes down to your own ambitions, goals desires etc. and in the end you can be equally successfull at both.

    The piece of paper matters, but you still have to have "I want it" to back it up.

    I never could foresee how good of a decision going to Boulder was for me. Sure, there is a lot of distraction, but life is full of them. Quality of life up here is pretty good, and if you want a decent business school too CU is only second to DU (and it's becoming debatable). It's just about perfect as far as college towns are concerned. I walk or ride everywhere, (which is sooo cool). It's opened my eyes in a lot of different ways, I've met a TON of cool people (and some not so cool people...ha) I can walk to Pearl, walk to The Fox and walk to all my classes....and yes, this semester I've been "Joe College" but I'm glad I can say I've had the real college experience...it's more cool than I ever could imagine.

    PS I've skiied 10 or 11 days since the start of November (I can't even remember) 5 pow days...but I will be going 24/7 until next Monday.
     
  39. dcamp29

    dcamp29 Monkey

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    alex, the double major in both engineering and buisness is insane- almost none of your credits will help either major so youll be taking twice as many classes as you should. my friend in chemical engineering tried, and he couldn't make it. but you might because my friend is really lazy.
     
  40. axlvid23

    axlvid23 Monkey

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    Well, I just confirmed enrollment at CU. Again, thanks for all the help in this process...I basically realized that what Jeff and others asserted is absolutely true...it's definitely all about who you are and how you market yourself. Also, a final visit to the CU engineering open house and a realization that their school of applied sciences is still very good regardless of the CU "party school" reputation put me over the edge....So I figure, why not compromise a little and go someplace that is aestetically more pleasing (in the hot chick department, campus, and location) and still one hell of a good school.

    and yeah, I might be reconsidering the biz/engineering double major thing...I'm sure there there's an easier way to achieve the same thing with less work.