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how important is a top uni?

as a current junior

+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

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35 answers


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Josh’s Answer

Going to a prestigious university can definitely give you a boost in finding your dream job. However, it's not just about the school's name – there are many other aspects that contribute to your success in securing that perfect position after completing your undergraduate studies. Your GPA, the extracurricular activities you take part in, and the connections you make all play a significant role in your job hunt. So, concentrate on making the most of your current opportunities to increase your chances of launching your career at the company of your choice.

Josh recommends the following next steps:

Build a strong network and surround yourself with those who have accomplished what you hope to accomplish.
Focus on what energizes you.
Explore extracurricular opportunities at your current university.
Remember to take a second and enjoy the present.
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Luisanny’s Answer

Certainly, it can hold significance; however, the crucial factor is your network. The individuals you encounter and maintain contact with will serve as your greatest resource throughout your professional journey.

Consider schools with a robust career center, as they can provide assistance regardless of your chosen major and possess connections across various sectors.
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Katie’s Answer

As a current rising sophomore in college, I have learned that while attending a top uni can give a student benefits, ultimately attending a university that fits you best is the priority! Do not feel more inclined to attend a uni just because of their title! Make sure you really research their programs, specific to the major you would like to apply for, as well as the schools environment, the number of people, clubs, cost, and so much more.
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Erin’s Answer

Hi! It's true that attending a top university can provide certain benefits, but it's not the sole factor in determining your success. There are numerous other routes that can lead you to achieve the same level of accomplishment as someone who goes to a top university.

By making the most of what your school offers, excelling in your classes, participating in extracurricular activities, and gaining work experience during the academic year or summer breaks, you'll set yourself up for success regardless of the reputation of your school.

Speaking from personal experience, I applied to a wide range of schools and ultimately chose a public state school due to the affordability and the scholarship I received. This decision opened up numerous opportunities for me, such as engaging in extracurricular activities and securing internships, which eventually led to my first job.
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Bryant’s Answer

Attending a renowned university can definitely boost your career prospects. In the beginning stages of your professional journey, having a distinguished university name on your resume can increase your chances of securing internships and interviews with sought-after organizations. Moreover, many of these organizations actively compete to recruit students directly from top universities. Furthermore, throughout your career, the connections you've established during your university years can prove to be beneficial in various ways. It's highly likely that several of your classmates will hold influential positions in organizations worldwide. These relationships can be valuable in helping you access new job opportunities, forming partnerships, and achieving sales with the organizations they are associated with.

However, it's important to remember that attending a top university isn't the sole factor in determining career success. Possessing specialized skills and certifications, as well as the ability to network and build relationships with other professionals, can also contribute significantly to your professional growth.
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Josh’s Answer

Going to a top university can definitely benefit you in some areas, but it is more important to attend a university that is the best fit for you personally. There are other factors that contribute to your success at any university that can help you secure your dream career after completing your studies. One important area is your personal network. The people you meet and connect with throughout your undergraduate studies will serve as a great resource as you look for careers in the future. Focusing on making the most of your studies, participating in extracurricular activities and gaining work experience through internships are all great ways to position yourself for future success.
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Martin’s Answer

Hi! It really depends on what career you plan to pursue. Some industries care about top university more than others. On one hand, if you are targeting industries like investment banking and consulting then top business school will matter because firms in those industries mostly recruit from there. It does not mean you cannot get those jobs from non top university, but it would take much more networking.

On the other hand, if you are targeting other industries like technology, medical or other engineering, the actual acquired skills and credentials might matter more. For example, there are numerous instance of great programmers getting job at big tech even if they did not go to top schools.
Thank you comment icon E.g. Hedge Funds, Investment Banks, Private Equities mostly hire the 1% from the very top colleges and business graduate schools, being in one of those top universities just gives you an opportunity to be potentially interviewed. Even with that, you have to be in 99 percentile of your college to get a foot in the door Keyur Sadhani (he / him)
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Roshan’s Answer

Hi! I'm a rising senior at Penn State and currently interning with Deloitte. Attending a top university is absolutely not necessary to succeed. Go to a school, a big one, with lots of resources and join clubs that allow you to grow academically and personally. When you are in college it's on the person to do what with their time.
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Sam’s Answer

Hi! While attending a top university may give you a leg up on others through connections and additional programs that are available to students, what is more important are the skills you learn at college and experiences you are involved with. As a current junior, I would focus on looking at colleges that have solid programs that will prepare you for a field you are interested in or a more general liberal arts college if you do not know exactly what field you want to go into. I would say again, overall the skills you learn at college, and relationships you develop will be more useful than just a name. Good luck throughout your process!
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Sean’s Answer

Great question! Attending a top university certainly has its benefits, but it's not the sole determining factor for success. What matters most is your dedication, motivation, and effort you put into your education and career development.
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Ava’s Answer

If you are looking at a university in order to create a large professional network, I recommend a university with a highly active alumni association.
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Elizabeth’s Answer

Attending a prestigious university can certainly boost your resume, but it's not the only key to success in finding a great career! Take it from me - I didn't get into UMD and ended up at Towson University. Instead of trying to transfer after just one semester, I chose to stay and make the most of my experience. Not only did I excel in my classes, but I also engaged in extracurricular activities and built a strong network, which opened up numerous opportunities for me after college and led to a successful first job.

Remember, it's essential to choose a school that caters to YOUR needs from a well-rounded perspective, considering factors such as academic programs, culture, athletics, student population, environment, and more.
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Atul’s Answer

Choosing a top university is crucial for your first job, but after that, your achievements matter most. My son, who attended a state university, competed against a Harvard graduate for a position and got the job.

If you think you have what it takes to attend a top university, consider the following:

- Have you taken and succeeded in AP courses?
- Have you pushed yourself by taking advanced courses?
- Do you have near-perfect SAT or ACT scores?
- Remember, essays matter – how strong is your English vocabulary?

MIT doesn't assign grades during the first year for a reason. Not everyone is meant to be there. When students who thought they could handle the pressure couldn't, suicide rates increased. That's why MIT stopped giving grades in the freshman year. I learned this when I visited the school with my son.
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Manuel’s Answer

Hello Roshan,

Always set your sights high when it comes to attending a top-notch university. Treat your final two years in school with importance, since grades play a significant role. Nonetheless, I urge you to choose a university that aligns with your expectations and feels like the perfect match. Some may have higher rankings than others, but the key is to find a school that caters to your needs. Prestigious universities provide an impressive alumni network and the chance to secure employment with leading companies. However, remember that it's up to you to seize these opportunities. No matter where your educational journey takes you, embrace the experience and make the most of it.
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Kaushik’s Answer

Hello!

Attending a prestigious university certainly has its perks, but it's not the be-all and end-all of your college journey and life after graduation. What truly counts is how you utilize your time at whichever university you choose. Focus on maintaining a strong GPA, engaging in extracurricular activities, and gaining valuable work experience during your college years. Make the most of your time and don't forget to have fun while you're at it!

Additionally, keep in mind that a university's overall ranking doesn't necessarily mean it's the perfect fit for you. Instead, consider researching specific programs and their rankings at various universities. For instance, if you're passionate about computer science, a school like NJIT might be a better choice.

Best of luck in your search, and may you find the ideal university that suits your needs!

Kaushik recommends the following next steps:

Research specific programs within universities
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Riya’s Answer

Hi! While it may seem like a big-name college is the most important thing, it is definitely not! It can give you an advantage, but there are so many other things that will help you attract recruiters. Try to join a few extracurriculars that you are passionate about, taking leadership roles in them. Use the resources provided by your school to grow and learn your skills better. Ultimately, the school name doesn't determine your internship, your level of work and dedication does!
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Agustin A.’s Answer

I believe a top university can boost your resume but definitely is not the only factor. Network, attitude, and experience are way more differential, from my experience. I would start with some public speaking courses which you can find easily on LinkedIn learning, udemy, or even YouTube. My second advice, would be to truly focus on networking use all tools available. LinkedIn is great, twitter as well.
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