Boston University - Great job if you want to pursue a PhD | Glassdoor

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There are newer employer reviews for Boston University

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"Great job if you want to pursue a PhD"

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  • Work/Life Balance
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant in Boston, MA
Current Employee - Graduate Research Assistant in Boston, MA
Doesn't Recommend
Approves of CEO

Pros

The Research Assistant (RA) position is one of two methods for engineers to receive a Master of Science Degree for free. The other is a Graduate Teaching Fellowship (GTF) which I am unable to comment on. The RA works 20 hours per week on research while taking two classes each semester. You have a large amount of control over the way you go about your research although your advisor will step in and micromanage if you are not making progress. The work / life balance definitely leans more towards "life" than "work". If you take summer courses you can finish in 1.5 years. Overall the RA is a great opportunity to get a MS in engineering relatively quickly without accumulating large amounts of debt.

Cons

As an RA you are at the mercy of your advisor. Most RA's work more than 20 hours per week although I was lucky enough to keep my hours down. Upon entering a research program many MS students hope to deliver some sort of a completed project, whether it be a piece of software or a hardware component. The reality is that professors want students who are interested in learning for the sake of learning. If you are motivated by delivering a completed project this is not the job for you. Unless you plan on pursuing a career in the area of your research, it does not add much strength to your resume. If you plan on working in industry after you graduate, a GTF position will give you a more marketable skillset.

Advice to Management

The RA position and MS program overall is intended for students who will continue towards a PhD or plan on working in research in their career. I would recommend that the MS program is altered to accommodate students who plan on pursuing careers in industry instead of grooming them for PhD programs.

Other Employee Reviews for Boston University

  1. "Great place to pursuit the academic goal"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Boston University full-time

    Pros

    Boston is one of the best cities to study. I've been exposed to the best lectures ever. At the same time, there are so many chances where I can meet scholars in other schools. Cross-registration makes taking classes from other schools so easy.

    Cons

    This depends on the department. In my case, the department sometimes did not hold any class, making the students take all the classes outside BU!


  2. "Decent paid for student worker"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Boston University part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    decent hourly paid for student worker

    Cons

    not much cons for my position

There are newer employer reviews for Boston University
There are newer employer reviews for Boston University

See Most Recent

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