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Electrical Engineering - Waterloo Vs Queen's Vs Toronto

A photo of Anonymous Anonymous
I've been accepted to all three thus far and now I just need to make a decision. For the life of me I cannot decide which one to go to. I've been to the U of T and Queen's Open House (regrettably I missed the Waterloo Open House). I was thinking Queen's and Toronto have really nice campuses and I like how U of T is in the middle of the city but I also like how Queen's campus is a city in itself.

I like each of the different programs like how Queen's has a common first year to get a broad overview of each engineering program...but I know I like electrical and so it seems impractical. I like the idea of Toronto's PEY so that I get a full years experience of work, but I love Waterloo's co-op where it would help pay for school each year and I would have up to 2 years of on the job experience.

They are all well known engineering schools so I suppose I'm lucky that way since no matter which one I choose it's well respected.

Money isn't much of an importance to me, I can get a job at each campus and their co-op (internship/PEY) programs will help pay.

What's your opinion on the three?
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Is there any specializations for Waterloo's Electrical Engineering? I know that for Queen's and Toronto they offer specializations after the second year.
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A photo of computerengineer computerengineer
Hey, I applied for computer engineering for both U of T and Waterloo too. I have heard the waterloo ECE program is slightly better than U of T, and it is harder to achieve a higher GPA in U of T. I have also heard that the waterloo engineering students know each other very well and are more friendly, mainly because it is in a small city with comparatively lower population and less to do. So , I might just go to waterloo for ECE. Also, may I ask what your top 6 average is?
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A photo of entanglement entanglement
Hey guys, if you decide to go to Waterloo, or just want to talk with fellow UW ECE students, join the ECE Class of 2017 group.

I've already decided on UW, but you guys have two month to decide. Take your time and make the right choice.
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A photo of immaculatedx immaculatedx
Waterloo: Co-op, enough said, no breaks for 5 years and crap campus though.
UofT: Great academic tradition and name ... perhaps if you're planning grad school
Queens: Great university atmosphere/experience ... Not that multicultural though
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A photo of Anonymous Anonymous

@computerengineer wrote
Hey, I applied for computer engineering for both U of T and Waterloo too. I have heard the waterloo ECE program is slightly better than U of T, and it is harder to achieve a higher GPA in U of T. I have also heard that the waterloo engineering students know each other very well and are more friendly, mainly because it is in a small city with comparatively lower population and less to do. So , I might just go to waterloo for ECE. Also, may I ask what your top 6 average is?




My prerequisite and top marks were:

Advanced Function: 100
Calculus: 99 (In progress)
Chemistry: 92
Data Management: 94
English: 86 (In Progress)
Physics: 87

Avg: 93

Although I expect English to drop drastically (approx. 76)
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A photo of LindaS LindaS
From what I gathered, UT is for if you want something more research based and plan to go to grad school. UW is for if you plan to go straight to work after uni. I'm not sure about queens since I haven't applied there.
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@MrSparkles wrote
I've been accepted to all three thus far and now I just need to make a decision. For the life of me I cannot decide which one to go to. I've been to the U of T and Queen's Open House (regrettably I missed the Waterloo Open House). I was thinking Queen's and Toronto have really nice campuses and I like how U of T is in the middle of the city but I also like how Queen's campus is a city in itself.

I like each of the different programs like how Queen's has a common first year to get a broad overview of each engineering program...but I know I like electrical and so it seems impractical. I like the idea of Toronto's PEY so that I get a full years experience of work, but I love Waterloo's co-op where it would help pay for school each year and I would have up to 2 years of on the job experience.

They are all well known engineering schools so I suppose I'm lucky that way since no matter which one I choose it's well respected.

Money isn't much of an importance to me, I can get a job at each campus and their co-op (internship/PEY) programs will help pay.

What's your opinion on the three?


You might have missed the engineering-specific open house, but tomorrow's (Saturday) the big Waterloo open house. You can still get some information about ECE I'm sure and it'll be a good chance to check out the campus/residences.

If you can't make it tomorrow, I would suggest finding a time you can, and then emailing Waterloo and asking if someone in engineering would mind giving you a tour and answering your questions on ECE. They want you to attend so there's a good chance they'll help you out (I did this for other schools). Or just come by whenever, join a general tour from the information center or go roam the campus on your own.
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If employers don't care where which university you get your degree from...why is there so much commotion to go to universities with "a name" for themselves like U of T and Waterloo? What makes these schools better than others? Why are high achievers drawn to these universities?
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A photo of plato plato
Employers do care.

Why the hype? In short: money attracts best research; research attracts best faculty; best faculty has deep ties to industry; curriculum reflects the needs of industry; graduates become industry leaders; industry leaders contribute money to research; repeat cycle.

I rarely make comments on this engineering school over that one. But I will say, Queens is not in the same league as UW and UT.

In my humble opinion, there are only four engineering schools in Canada that compete on the top tier. McGill, Waterloo, Toronto , UBC.

However, I must offer this. You can graduate from anyone of those four schools and still be incompetent, compared to another more competent student that graduated from any other accredited engineering program.

If you are serious about electrical engineering - pick UW or UT.
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A photo of Viking21 Viking21
Electrical Engineering...Uoft and UW

I would personally choose waterloo...doesn't matter if you want to go to grad school or work internationally I believe waterloo prepares you the best from Canada.

But if you wanna know the top schools for employer rep for engineering it goes like this

Uoft, UBC, McGill, and Waterloo...I saw it online once.

Good luck in your decision making...research well and take your time.
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Hm..very interesting points Plato, thank you for all of that information. I had been led to believe that employers don't care about where a degree was obtained. However that may have spawned from my lack of experience in the work force and being spoon fed this since I was younger.

I feel as though I would really enjoy Engineering at Waterloo although I feel almost obligated to view the campus first hand to see if I will truly enjoy my undergrad. At the same time, I'm thinking that why does it matter what it looks like when I'll be there for only 5 years.

I had a few questions about the co-op program at Waterloo: say I actually got a placement for each of the 6 co-op terms, why does only 1 year of the 2 years experience count for experience before trying the Professional Engineer exam? I'm guessing that the first couple terms I will still be inexperienced. About the milestones - is the Technical Presentation hard?

Most things for Waterloo are laid out with all their brochures, information packages and things like that. I like how organized they appear that way.

And viking thank you as well. I had had my eye set on Waterloo since grade 9 - although then it was for math/physics. I suppose if I wanted to pursue a Masters...or if I could, depending on...well several factors, I could try to get into U of T.
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A photo of plato plato

@MrSparkles wrote
Hm..very interesting points Plato, thank you for all of that information. I had been led to believe that employers don't care about where a degree was obtained. However that may have spawned from my lack of experience in the work force and being spoon fed this since I was younger.

I feel as though I would really enjoy Engineering at Waterloo although I feel almost obligated to view the campus first hand to see if I will truly enjoy my undergrad. At the same time, I'm thinking that why does it matter what it looks like when I'll be there for only 5 years.

I had a few questions about the co-op program at Waterloo: say I actually got a placement for each of the 6 co-op terms, why does only 1 year of the 2 years experience count for experience before trying the Professional Engineer exam? I'm guessing that the first couple terms I will still be inexperienced. About the milestones - is the Technical Presentation hard?

Most things for Waterloo are laid out with all their brochures, information packages and things like that. I like how organized they appear that way.

And viking thank you as well. I had had my eye set on Waterloo since grade 9 - although then it was for math/physics. I suppose if I wanted to pursue a Masters...or if I could, depending on...well several factors, I could try to get into U of T.



I urge you to visit any campus before making a decision.

You are right, you can only enter the P. Eng. program in your last year.

The milestones are easy.

You have to visit Waterloo before deciding to attend. They have engineering tours daily. They also have residence tours daily. Some people hate the Waterloo campus. To be honest I preferred the UT campus. But I did not like the UT community. UT is a commuter school. Not as friendly as a non-commuter school.

Organize a visit to the campus. If you're really having a hard time organizing things PM me and I can show you around campus :)

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Oh okay, everyone I talk to - besides my father and grandmother - urges me to visit the campuses, it must be very important. I visited the Queen's and UT campus...I really liked both of them.

I'll set up one of those tours. I feel bad because it's a three hour drive for a one hour tour -.-'. Or maybe I'll set up two on one day so that way I can kill more time and it doesn't seem like a complete waste of time for my driver :P.

I think I'll take you up on that plato. In the mean time I'll ask anything that comes to mind. I've never pm before...
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A photo of ChronosKey ChronosKey
"only 5 years" is a fairly long and important time especially between the ages of 18-24, you're gonna wanna live in a nice place. Although, above all, your education is important. For most people, it's a toss up between Waterloo and Toronto. I'm choosing UW primarily for co-op. Education at either university is similar I think.

But yeah, tour both places and ask students in EE at both universities about their experiences. You've still got a few months before you make your decision. Good luck!
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Haha yeah, right after I wrote that I started thinking that 5 years is actually a significant amount of time. But sure thing, I'll tour them all! (: Thank you everyone!
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