Is Graduate School Your Next Chapter? Insights from Drexel CCI Students

The decision to pursue graduate studies is a pivotal crossroads in the academic and professional journey. It's a choice that comes with myriad questions and considerations, often including, "Is graduate school the right path for me?" Additionally, for those eyeing Drexel University’s College of Computing & Informatics (CCI) as their potential academic destination, there is another question: "Is Drexel CCI the right fit for me?"

To help you navigate this important decision, we've turned to the experts themselves — our current graduate students. During the virtual panel, “Navigating Graduate School: Insights from Current CCI Students”, they generously shared their unique experiences and compelling reasons for choosing Drexel as their academic home. Keep reading as we explore their perspectives, offering valuable insights that may just help you find the answers you seek.

Why was Drexel right for you?

Tejas Nagmoti, MSI in Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience:

Tejas Milind NagmotiDrexel CCI was a perfect fit for me because of its exceptional curriculum and faculty. I believe that Drexel offers a comprehensive curriculum that delves deep into various aspects of HCI [human-computer interaction], such as experience design, usability testing and interaction design. This specialization aligns perfectly with my passion for creating intuitive and user-friendly technology.

Drexel also allowed me to collaborate with organizations, allow[ing] me to work on real-world problems, which proved to be a really good learning experience for me. I am currently in my fifth quarter, and I just completed my capstone project. During the project, I collaborated with a company in Dubai to help them solve an issue they were facing. It was a great learning experience for me to work with a real-world company.

Shawn McCollum, Part-time/Online MS in Computer Security & Privacy:

Shawn McCollumDrexel CCI offers introductory classes that can help you get up to speed at the graduate level, and the professors are committed whether you are an expert in the subject or not. They are willing to work with you as much as possible if you are new to a topic. For example, I did not take a networking class in my undergraduate college, but I took one here and the professor was awesome. I got to work with him all the time and ask him any questions that I wanted, and he never pushed me away.

Geeta Kukreja, MS in Computer Science:

Geeta KukrejaI think Drexel was a great fit for me, considering my background in computer science. Computer science is a field that demands expertise in different domains such as software engineering, artificial intelligence, machine learning, cloud computing, etc. The 45-credit curriculum offered me courses to enhance my skill set and explore my interests. CCI also focuses on research and co-op programs in the same domains, which allowed me to gain hands-on experience and real-world applications.

What resources have you used while on campus?

Jasjiv Singh, MS in Computer Science:

Jasjiv SinghWhile on campus, one of the valuable resources I utilize is the Drexel shuttle bus service. This convenient transportation option not only helps me navigate through campus efficiently, but it also has different stops that have made it easier to attend classes and participate in other various activities around the area.

Tejas Nagmoti, MSI in Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience:

Tejas Milind NagmotiI use Drexel’s digital library, which is a great feature because you can access most of the research papers, journals and books here. It has millions of papers and books available to students for free, so I would recommend that everyone make good use of it.

Alex Hoang, MS in Data Science:

Alex HoangI want to highlight the CCI building. Every time I am on campus and need help with a class, I go to the CCI lab because the teacher’s assistants (TAs) have office hours there, and they also have any equipment you may need. Sometimes, if I need a different environment, I use the Hagerty Library.

Geeta Kukreja, MS in Computer Science:

Geeta KukrejaThere are different community centers for everyone. For example, they have a Jewish center [Perelman Center for Jewish Life at Drexel University] near Chick-Fil-A and a separate kosher café.

What was unexpected about graduate school from when you applied to when you started classes?

John Soriano Aguilar, Online MS in Information Systems:

John Soriano AguilarI went to a Catholic university for undergrad where everyone was pretty cookie-cutter. In Drexel’s master's program, there are people from different walks of life who either are going straight from undergrad, took a gap year, or are going back to school 10, 15 or 20 years later. I think that is interesting because you get to work with classmates who have different experiences or inputs than somebody your own age.

Before I started my program, I was pre-med and interested in tech. At the time, I didn't know many people who could relate to transitioning from a traditional science degree to computer programming. I've met several people who ditched pre-med to pursue careers in IT and tech, so that is something I appreciate about Drexel.

What is the most important piece of advice you have for our incoming graduate students?

Abhishek Shetty, MS in Data Science:

Abhishek ShettyDrexel operates on a quarter system, so each term is going to be 10 weeks long. It goes by quickly and one should keep track of time. If you miss out on a couple of weeks, you’re going to get behind. I usually keep track of my schedule using Google Calendar to stay organized.

Tejas Nagmoti, MSI in Human-Computer Interaction & User Experience:

Tejas Milind NagmotiEmbrace the power of collaboration. I would recommend everyone to collaborate with the other students of your class for group projects and assignments. If you are struggling, seek help from professors, advisors, or friends. Don't keep your doubts to yourself.


For more insight from the students, you can watch the recorded webinar by clicking the header image above or visiting

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