Yale CS vs Princeton CS

youngmonkey525's picture
Rank: Chimp | 10

I'm a high school senior deciding between Princeton and Yale. I want the ability to consider tech banking, as I think I'd be really interested in it. I think I would major in CS for most versatility between tech/finance/consulting and I know that Princeton CS is definitively better and Yale really lacks their tech culture and tech pipeline. I am just wondering how big the difference is for me getting into tech/tech banking from Yale CS versus Princeton?

Comments (18)

Mar 30, 2020

People will tell you that Yale CS isn't bad, small department size = higher student to faculty ratio. They are full of shit. If you are even remotely considering tech banking or CS, go to Princeton. Yale's CS culture is horrible. Department is full of tenured old professors who don't know anything, assignments are horribly constructed, and no one cares about STEM here. The majority of STEM students here end up switching into a non-stem major by their senior year. To give you an example of our CS culture: our best CS class is CS 50, which is an online class taught at Harvard.

Go look at tech companies and see how many are Yale alumni. Then compare it to the amount of Princeton alum. Princeton is top of the line CS, barely below MIT/Stanford/CMU. Take Princeton and don't look back.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Mar 30, 2020

Seems from this thread and others that doublehelix really doesn't like Yale. That sucks, and I'd take his comments for what they're worth, but they're not indicative of overall sentiment or the reality of placement.

Graduated from Yale last year. I agree Princeton CS is probably a little bit more serious, with slightly better professors and a more practical focus. Yale CS is a little more theoretical, and students have to learn some practical "real-world" elements on their own or in their internship(s).

That said, you'll have a much better time at Yale and will get looks at all the same jobs. Friends that went to Princeton wish they went to Yale, were always trying to visit, etc.

In terms of recruiting, Yale CS is super strong. 2 of my roommates senior year were CS. One is a PM at a FAANG, the other is at a quantitative trading firm (think AQR, SIG, Jane Street). People also regularly go to tech banking, either TMT at BB/EB, or Raine Group/Qatalyst.

If you're choosing purely on academics, then maybe Princeton is the move, but if you want to optimize for both college experience and your job, then I think Yale is a better choice.

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Mar 30, 2020

Come on man, Yale is still an alright place. It isn't terrible, but it would be lying to say that the CS department is close to that of Princeton's. The education in CS that you will get at Yale is far below the one you will receive at Princeton. As for your roommates, they're the select few who would've done well anywhere. Take a look at FAANG, Citadel, SIG, etc. on LinkedIn, and compare the numbers of Princeton alum to those of Yale. The numbers don't lie. Yale CS recruiting is only good because of the caliber of student, not the school's reputation.

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Mar 30, 2020

Think you both have valid points. Comes down to which school he likes better, but probably worth considering Princeton CS is a little better

Apr 2, 2020

Do you think your roommates are outliers? Are a lot of kids at Yale seeking out these roles/ getting them. I'm a bit worried that without a prominent tech culture and kids going for the same stuff is me it might be harder to learn with/from my classmates in the recruiting process

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Apr 4, 2020

They weren't really outliers. Only slightly less-common attribute was that one of them got PM instead of standard SWE job at FAANG. But they interned at the company since the summer after sophomore year (in a cohort with several other Yale students), and most of them ended up getting roles above SWE for full-time. For context, current PM had a 3.0 at graduation and entire recruiting process was kind of a joke tbh. Got the internship, and then converting to next summer and then FT was basically a formality. Alums at the firm got them PM role and highest comp package (literally made me second-guess doing IB). Quant had 3.8 and process was much more rigorous, but do-able.

I think the slightly less tech-focused environment can actually be good for recruiting because there's a little less competition. That said, there's enough kids recruiting for tech/quant jobs that there are enough people to practice with etc. Roommates had a groupchat with other Yale kids recruiting where they'd share deadlines, point-of-contact info, study materials, and so on.

The alum community in both tech and quantitative finance is strong. Might have something to do with the smaller interest pool. People go to bat for people just based on having gone to Yale.

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  • Intern in IB - Ind
Apr 2, 2020

lol theres one yale dude at qatalyst and he didn't even summer there..cmon

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  • Prospect in Other
Mar 30, 2020

I go to Princeton, and I can assure you that we think Yale students are miserable compared to us hahaha.... I really do think that Princeton students are happier overall than students at peer schools. Undergrad focus is also very very real here, so keep that in mind.

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Apr 2, 2020

Do you think the fact that Yale grade inflates and is definitely easier than Princeton is a helpful factor for them in terms of time available for networking and higher GPAs etc.?

  • Prospect in Other
Apr 2, 2020

I really doubt it. I think if you're doing well at Princeton, you still have a lot of free time. People at any school act as if they're swamped with work or whatever, and that tendency is strong at ivies. What I'm trying to say is: If you're getting As at Princeton, then you probably find getting As to be pretty easy. So the people who do best somewhat paradoxically have the most time and bandwidth for networking or whatever.

Mar 30, 2020

Definitely Princeton, Yale CS isn't that strong.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Mar 30, 2020

.

Mar 30, 2020

Princeton is one of the worst universities for finance recruiting. The only place that consistently recruits for them is JPM S&T. Not to mention everyone I know who goes there is miserable. One of my friends is a graduating senior and regrets choosing Princeton over Harvard. If I were you I'd take Yale and run.

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  • Intern in IB - Gen
Mar 30, 2020

damn had to make a new account to make a second comment for Yale?

Most Helpful
Apr 2, 2020

That's just false. My sister graduated princeton, ton of her friends went top BB for IB and a couple of them went straight into MF PE (including her).

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  • Intern in IB-M&A
Apr 2, 2020

Send the @

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Apr 2, 2020

Not sure about CS at either, but my sister did Econ at princeton and absolutely loved it. She's went to MF PE directly out of college. I think the work / life balance is much better at Princeton and that the overall college experience surpasses Yale by a significant amount.

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Apr 2, 2020
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