Dear Mentor:

How should I get an MS in Engineering in the US?

I am a student of Institute of Technology, Banaras Hindu University. I am doing engineering in Ceramic & Material Science. My ultimate aim is to do M.S. from a good university in the USA that can provide financial help, as I belong to a middle class family. My cumulative grade point average is 8.23. And right now I am in 4th year of engineering, and will be completing this by 2002. I would be highly grateful to you if you help me in achieving my goals.

Go2US4MS, Kanpur, UP, India

Dear Go2US4MS:

Getting admitted to a US university for an MS in engineering is based primarily on your performance. For any university, you need superior performance relative to the candidate pool. The better the university's reputation and prestige, the greater is the competition. Top universities admit only the highest caliber students from highly regarded colleges.

Financial aid is available to the international students in the form of scholarships, research assistantships, and teaching assistantships. The competition for obtaining such assistance is fierce - far greater than the competition for just getting admitted. So, you have to balance your ambition for going to a good university with your personal performance. We recognize your need for the financial aid; however, the aid offered to international students in the US is generally merit-based.

Typical requirements for admission include a bachelor's degree and the standardized entrance exam GRE (Graduate Record Exam). Your performance on these two key requirements would determine your chances for admission and financial aid. Prospective schools would also require 2-4 letters of recommendation.

We suggest that you visit the iMahal Education Section on Colleges & Universities in the US. Here you will find the List of Engineering Colleges in the US, as well as various sources that offer College Rankings. You can use the iMahal College Finder for the US to identify colleges that best match your performance and personal needs.

The admissions process begins almost one year ahead of the actual academic session. Since you would want to start your MS in the fall of 2002, you should start applying for admission this fall, say starting October 2001.

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