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Purdue vs. Illinois-Urbana Champaign

  1. Jan 18, 2007 #1

    I am very interested in pursueing a career in Engineering. I have applied to Illinois and Purdue and gotten in to each. As of Recently, my father has been very pro-purdue, which isn't a bad thing, just strange considering the fact that he has generally been most endeared to tangible items, and It would normally seem like the higher-ranked Illionois would be the obvious choice for him.

    Recently, my father has brought up the idea of the type and number of job offers someone from each school would expect to recieve. He said that there would be more job offers from Purdue, because they are more wll known. Is this true? My father makes it seem like Illionois is a virtual unknown in the engineering world, but I must ask myself, could that be possible with a overall ranking of #4 in the country?

    I got accepted to both colleges in Aerospace Engineering, but think I would like to check out Chemical Engineering (i love Chemistry). So a major decision would be which school has a better (not just based upon ranking, though) Chemical Engineering program.

    I love the Purdue campus, but at the same time it does seem a little urban, I have yet to see the Illinois campus first hand, but have seen picture of its "lawn" in front of a giant building and think it is awesome. Based on some of the pictures I've seen Illionois looks like the place (asthetically) for me! But I want to know more about the rest of the campus.

    Finally, Pudue seems to be very Engineering engineered (for lack of a better word) and very concerned about getting the student through the program, is it the same way at Illinois, or is it simply a "every man for themselves" attitude? A lot of Purdue's funding seems to go to Engineering because they are primarily an engineering school (as far as the public eye goes), but does Illinois go through the same process?

    Sorry there are so many questions, I'm just very interested in making the right decision as far a where I go to college. It is very hard for me to choose between these two great institutions. Also anything about partying at these schools is not that big of a deal, because I understand it is somewhat part of the college experience.

    Thank you.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 18, 2007 #2
    Illnois has an excellent CS faculty...they are the creators of some parallel programming.. .ie CHARM++ ...search NAMD
    they do alot of HPC computing.
  4. Jan 18, 2007 #3
    Thanks for that info. It's good to know that some of the faculty at Illinois is good, but I guess I kind of expected that.

    I have one more question, though.

    At Purdue they have the first year engineering course where the student gets to "try out" all of the other engineering majors before making their decision to stick with one major over the other. Is there anything like that in place in Illinois? If not, how do you know that the engineering program chosen is the right one for you?

    I'm pretty set on becoming a Chemical engineer, so I'm not really sure if this feature does anything for me, but still its a plus.

  5. Jan 19, 2007 #4
    Several general comments. I'm in physics, not engineering, so take them for what they're worth.

    I really don't think you need to worry about reputation of one versus the other. Both have outstanding reputations as engineering schools, and both are heavily recruited from. At Illinois, for example, there are four separate engineering-specific career fairs each year, each with over a hundred companies recruiting, and several hundred more recruit through Engineering Career Services. Finding a job should not be a concern; if you're really interested, you can probably email or call them and ask for statistics (how many have jobs within 6 months of graduation, etc.)

    To give one worthless anecdote, I did my undergrad at another school that's very highly ranked in engineering, and I heard references to Illinois almost as much as to Stanford, Berkeley, etc. (though I generally ran with CS/ECE people).

    Illinois's campus is what one would generally think of as a university campus--mostly arranged around a few large quads. It's reasonably attractive. As an engineer you'd spend most of your time "north of Green", as they say, so you wouldn't be on that particular "lawn" much. :smile:

    Not sure what you mean by "the same process", but engineering is a very prominent part of Illinois, and of course they're rolling in money like any comparable program. Remember that most funding in technical fields comes from outside sources, so it wouldn't matter much if the university ignored them entirely. As it is, they always seem to be building something over on the engineering quad.
  6. Jan 19, 2007 #5
    Wow. Thanks Philbin, that did really help. I guess it does kind of come down to a visit to the two and see which one gives me a better feeling.

    But I still wonder about the presence of a first year engineering program like at engineering. Does anyone know if Illinois has anything like this?
  7. Jan 19, 2007 #6
    See http://www.engr.uiuc.edu/students/prospective/" [Broken] ("Curriculum for..." at top and "Undergraduate Programs..." at bottom). Looks like there's no such thing.

    But yeah, you really should visit both and see what you think.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  8. Jan 25, 2007 #7
    Minoring in Physics

    I'm thinking about minoring in physics in college and also majoring in engineering. My question is, which school, Purdue or Illinois, has the better science program? again, I'm most interested in Physics/chemistry.
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