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:::WATERLOO DENIED:::

A photo of plato plato
Let me provide my two cents. Waterloo receives an overwhelming amount of applications each year. This year, applications to Ontario engineering schools was up 20% on average. If this was strictly a matter selecting students with the highest marks, Waterloo would not have an AIF, and selection would be cut and dry.

The AIF is not just another ranking system where the person who lists the most ECs wins. The AIF provides the admissions committee an opportunity to 'interview' you, and learn more about your strengths, weaknesses, personality traits, background..etc... all in the interest of trying to paint a picture of who you are. Why do they care who you are? This explanation from MIT admissions is probably not too far off the mark:

"When we admit a class of students to MIT, it's as if we're choosing a 1,000-person team to climb a very interesting, fairly rugged mountain - together. We obviously want people who have the training, stamina and passion for the climb. At the same time, we want each to add something useful or intriguing to the team, from a wonderful temperament or sense of humor, to compelling personal experiences, to a wide range of individual gifts, talents, interests and achievements. We are emphatically not looking for a batch of identical perfect climbers; we are looking for a richly varied team of capable people who will support, surprise and inspire each other."


You have been selected to join other climbing teams, where your contributions and strengths will be valued. Don't spend too much time sulking at base camp, your team needs you.

Oh right, you're thinking...says the guy who got accepted? I spent over 3 hours a day for three months researching which offer I should accept. Sometimes Waterloo was ahead, sometimes it was behind. I never blindly chose the school based on hype or reputation. I see many of you have offers to great programs at great schools, don't let anyone convince you that one school is better than the other.

All of our teams will scale the same mountain. The only team that matters on the mountain is yours.
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A photo of iRamie iRamie
You really are Plato
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A photo of WFerrell3 WFerrell3

@iRamie wrote
You really are Plato



+1
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A photo of Anonymous Anonymous

@WFerrell3 wrote

@iRamie wrote
You really are Plato



+1



agreed
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A photo of T2011 T2011

@plato wrote
Let me provide my two cents. Waterloo receives an overwhelming amount of applications each year. This year, applications to Ontario engineering schools was up 20% on average. If this was strictly a matter selecting students with the highest marks, Waterloo would not have an AIF, and selection would be cut and dry.

The AIF is not just another ranking system where the person who lists the most ECs wins. The AIF provides the admissions committee an opportunity to 'interview' you, and learn more about your strengths, weaknesses, personality traits, background..etc... all in the interest of trying to paint a picture of who you are. Why do they care who you are? This explanation from MIT admissions is probably not too far off the mark:

"When we admit a class of students to MIT, it's as if we're choosing a 1,000-person team to climb a very interesting, fairly rugged mountain - together. We obviously want people who have the training, stamina and passion for the climb. At the same time, we want each to add something useful or intriguing to the team, from a wonderful temperament or sense of humor, to compelling personal experiences, to a wide range of individual gifts, talents, interests and achievements. We are emphatically not looking for a batch of identical perfect climbers; we are looking for a richly varied team of capable people who will support, surprise and inspire each other."


You have been selected to join other climbing teams, where your contributions and strengths will be valued. Don't spend too much time sulking at base camp, your team needs you.

Oh right, you're thinking...says the guy who got accepted? I spent over 3 hours a day for three months researching which offer I should accept. Sometimes Waterloo was ahead, sometimes it was behind. I never blindly chose the school based on hype or reputation. I see many of you have offers to great programs at great schools, don't let anyone convince you that one school is better than the other.

All of our teams will scale the same mountain. The only team that matters on the mountain is yours.



I understand that you have given reasons for Waterloo choosing you over other students, but may I know what was critical element that made you choose Waterloo over others(I am in a similar situation)? How did you choose a team when you barely know the members of the team ?
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A photo of plato plato

@T2011 wrote

I understand that you have given reasons for Waterloo choosing you over other students, but may I know what was critical element that made you choose Waterloo over others(I am in a similar situation)? How did you choose a team when you barely know the members of the team ?




There were several key factors that I used to evaluate my offers of admission. Each factor carried a specific weighting, and the grand tally of factor scores is how I viewed each university. The weighting of each factor will be individual to the student, based on their priorities; and the score for each factor will also vary per-student, according to a student's preferences.

Here are my factors, ordered in descending weight:
1. Academics
2. Campus & Community - Fit & Feel
3. Graduate school opportunities
4. Employment opportunities
5. General ethos of the school
6. Housing, local town/city
7. Faculty - Quality, access

If you are attending one of the top 5 engineering schools in Canada, point one does not vary widely. However, their are notable difference between schools, but more so between programs. Point number two varied considerably, and given its high weighting, was critical to grade accurately. I spent several days on each campus, attending lectures, talking with students, and just imagining myself actually being there for 4-5 years. Points three and four did not vary much among the top 5 engineering schools in Canada. Points five through seven varied considerably, but given their low weighting, only had a significant effect if all three points aligned in one direction.

My advice: visit the schools and spend as much time on campus as possible. Waterloo and Queens are vastly different in terms of the student body and community. Create your own list of priorities, and spend some time researching what's important to you.

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A photo of T2011 T2011
My advice: visit the schools and spend as much time on campus as possible. Waterloo and Queens are vastly different in terms of the student body and community. Create your own list of priorities, and spend some time researching what's important to you.

[/quote]

One big problem is that I am an international student. So I cannot visit the schools. As you have been doing a lot of research, can you verify one of my assumptions? I have been told UofT Electrical puts a lot of emphasis on hardware, and students usually get work related to that area whereas Waterloo ECE gives a lot of importance to software, and they can get job offers in that area. Is this a safe assumption?
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A photo of plato plato

@T2011 wrote


One big problem is that I am an international student. So I cannot visit the schools. As you have been doing a lot of research, can you verify one of my assumptions? I have been told UofT Electrical puts a lot of emphasis on hardware, and students usually get work related to that area whereas Waterloo ECE gives a lot of importance to software, and they can get job offers in that area. Is this a safe assumption?



Both programs deal with hardware and software. There is no getting around either of those topics if you want to become a computer/electrical engineer. Both UT and UW offer similar job prospects upon graduation. As an international student, if english is not your first language and you plan on working in an English speaking country after graduation, I would recommend Waterloo, as you will get more work experience and the soft skills you need to be successful. Conversely, it will be more challenging. Also, you wont be able to visit home as often and for as long (summer vacation) at Waterloo. Whereas, at UT, you have summers off to do as you please.

All that aside, there is some truth to your statement. However, I would modify it to say that UW provides more software exposure than UT in the first two years of ECE.
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A photo of plato plato

@shirlx wrote

Aside from co-op, would you say that UofT is as good as Waterloo when it comes to CS and Software? What about mac?



I've only researched engineering programs, I know nothing about CS, sorry.
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A photo of aimango aimango

@shirlx wrote

@plato wrote

@T2011 wrote


One big problem is that I am an international student. So I cannot visit the schools. As you have been doing a lot of research, can you verify one of my assumptions? I have been told UofT Electrical puts a lot of emphasis on hardware, and students usually get work related to that area whereas Waterloo ECE gives a lot of importance to software, and they can get job offers in that area. Is this a safe assumption?



Both programs deal with hardware and software. There is no getting around either of those topics if you want to become a computer/electrical engineer. Both UT and UW offer similar job prospects upon graduation. As an international student, if english is not your first language and you plan on working in an English speaking country after graduation, I would recommend Waterloo, as you will get more work experience and the soft skills you need to be successful. Conversely, it will be more challenging. Also, you wont be able to visit home as often and for as long (summer vacation) at Waterloo. Whereas, at UT, you have summers off to do as you please.

All that aside, there is some truth to your statement. However, I would modify it to say that UW provides more software exposure in the first two years that UT.




Aside from co-op, would you say that UofT is as good as Waterloo when it comes to CS and Software? What about mac?

ave you looked into the requirements of the actual degrees? You can probably find under "Current students" the courses that UofT students normally take. Because I personally have no idea : D

Software - we do a course each in 1A, 1B, 2A terms relating to circuits/hardware. In 3B i think we take a control systems course which is considered hardware-ish. thats about it. So it isnt bad if youre afraid of hardware.

For CS - you can avoid it entirely.
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