Seminar on Graduate Studies in the US and Canada, organized by SECS
SECS organized a seminar on Aug. 1, "Graduate Studies in the US and
Canada" The speaker, Prof Shahriar Khan, said that the previous
stereotype of the college dropout tinkering in their garage (Steve
Jobs and Steve Wozniak of Apple) has been replaced by the
international graduate student becoming a CEO (Sundar Pichai of Google
and Satya Nadella of Microsoft).
Choosing a university is a crucial decision, as there are hundreds or thousands to choose from. US universities still have more opportunities for admission and financial aid than Canadian universities. The ranking of universities can be found from Shanghai rankings, Times Higher Education, etc. The most common financial aid is the assistantship – either doing research or teaching. Scholarship or fellowship for international students are very rare. If a good university gives admission, they are likely to give financial aid. Part time on-campus work is okay, but off campus work is is difficult (and illegal?). Foreign universities evaluate applications looking first at university of graduation, then GRE score, and then GPA. Research publications by undergraduates have less credibility. Applicants should start preparing early for the GRE and TOEFL. Having the right intentions and the capabilities will greatly help in the visa interview. Students should take the help of the American center (or British council, or European equivalent) rather than a commercial so-called education agency. Going through the whole application process is part of a students's professional development, that should not be left to a commercial agency. Let faculty members and CGP office be advisors for students. Students should keep their door open to return to the Bangladesh as returning MS graduates have good job opportunities.