I recently completed my Bachelors degree.(June 2012)
B.Tech in Computer Science.
Up until the second year of my engineering, I was a below average student.
But, afterwards, I started working hard and my grades started to pick up during the third and final year. Now, my average percentile is 70% (65% in 1st & 2nd yr and 75% in 3rd and 4th yr).
The institute I studied in is not a well known one.
I got placed in an average IT company, with a salary of Rs. 2,75,000 per year, on a contract for 30 months. I am supposed to join in August(First week probably).
So, I got 1 month to make a decision regarding my career.
I got 4 plans currently and am not able to choose one.
1. Job with current company, improve my skill set and move on to better companies/better job descriptions and so on.
2. Job with current company, while preparing for CAT/GMAT and then MBA.
3. Job with current company, improve my skill set while preparing for GRE & TOEFL and then, M.S in a reputed institute in US.
4. Decline job offer, prepare for GRE and TOEFL and then M.S(Jan 2013), hopefully in a reputed institute(if I do not get admitted into one, then I'll try again in Sept. 2013)
What do you think is the right choice for me?
Please do post any other suggestions on your mind.
I am pretty good at programming languages like C, C++, Java and my communication and analytical skills are very good.
I like to travel and experience life in different countries.
I don't want to be a regular guy with a regular job.
I always look for something new and interesting.
Your choice will be easier if you could envision your future. From what I guessed from your post is that 5-10 years down the line, you imagine yourself in a reputed company in a leadership / managerial role. My further response will be based on this assumption.
It looks like you're thinking of diverse streams for your post graduate studies. That won't help because MBA and MS are two entirely different career paths and lead to two different careers. But if your ultimate goal is to see yourself at a senior position in the corporate hierarchy, then you better stick to first two options ( continuing with job or getting an MBA ). But if you wish to make a career on the technical front [see yourself as software architect, technical lead of an organization etc.] then MS degree might be useful. But it would be a different game for you because you'll have to travel to other country to get your degree.
So first things first: Decide which path you want to walk on.
In any case, giving up on current job doesn't look like a good option to me. Preparing for MBA / MS isn't a big deal if you are committed and excited about cracking the entrance exams. I know several people who've done that.
You might as well consider the efforts you'll put in preparing for MBA or MS. Instead, if you could equip yourself with the technical knowledge and excel at your job; you'll have better chances of getting promotions and better packages / challenging jobs within your organization or the new organization that you join.
If you're interested in challenging stuff, there are enough challenges available in Open Source world where you can prove your technical capabilities and gain reputation.
But, here is the low down of my situation.
The job I got offered is a consultant/associate consultant one.
I have no qualms about moving to another country, either for education or for a job. In fact I prefer it.
My dilemma is regarding the time left.
If I wanna go for M.S, then I need to spend 2-3 months preparing for the respective exams and even with a good score in those exams, I am not sure if a good institute(Eg. Boston University) would accept me.
There are more than a few reasons for it:
Firstly, the college I've graduated from isn't a very good one, although it's NBA accredited.
Secondly, I haven't got any extra curricular activities or any other achievements on my profile.
Next, my grade percentile (only 70%).
On the other hand, if I wanna go with job+MBA, I don't know if I can make it into a good institute(like IIMs, thanks to reservations) or handle the pressures of a corporate life.
You see, I don't want to be a guy who sits in front of a desk or a computer for 8-10 hours a day.
I like to have a good balance between work & life, allowing me ample time for other interests(like sports, music classes, gaming, etc.).
I am willing to quit my current job after 12 - 18 months if I get accepted into a good institute. But, that depends on whether M.S is a good option after a job.
Finally, your guess is pretty close.
I do want be in a reputed company in a good position/role, by the age of 30 (I'm 21 now).
I prefer my work environment to be something like the one at Google, laid back, with ample time for other interests.
Any post graduate course would appreciate work experience. From what I guess, you want to be in a job that offers you technical work but no work pressure. That's never going to happen. Google India, as far as I know, isn't involved in hard-core technical work. If you go to Google or any other similar company; you'll be pressured for work. There's no company I know that lets people enjoy and do work at their will. Don't be under that illusion. The moment you step into leadership role, you're going to find it hard to find the 'perfect work+life' balance that you aim to achieve.
If you want to have a good work-life balance, continue with the job you've in hand and excel in it. You'll find out your own ways to achieve what you want to achieve.
So, now, my question would be this:
Is it advantageous(or disadvantageous) to apply for M.S with work experience?
I am asking this because I've seen many people, who go to US for M.S with work experience, but are not given much preference when compared to a person without work experience.
What's your say on this?
Besides, is it advisable to break my contract and quit the job after 1 year, if I get into a good university?
Will it have any affects on my work experience and career?
Prior work experience of at least 2 years would count once you start looking for a job after M.S. It may not matter at the time of admissions, but it would definitely matter when you're applying for a job after your PG. Any company would prefer a candidate with some work experience in the relevant field (programming, coding, planning, management etc.) than a fresh grad just out of college.
No, it's NOT advisable to break contract. If you break a contract, your company may decide not to offer you a letter of experience; which would basically mean that you won't be able to prove your work experience. If you're making a contract - then don't break it. Simply complete the term and get your work experience letter - it's going to matter.
Lastly, you need to figure out your own strong reasons of opting for MS: Try to find out what kind of job profiles do people get who've background similar to yours. Then find out whether that's what you'll like doing. If you're looking for a laid back life with ample time for your routine activities; I'd say stick to your job and perform well. Rest will fall in place on its own.
I've received an update from my employer.
They say that my joining has been delayed for another 2-3 months due to the economic condition in Europe.
Right now is the time for haste as I am starting to get a little tensed.
So, suppose I go for MS, can I do MBA after MS?
Also, you've been telling me to determine the path I want to follow.
Here it is. I've always been passionate about physics and aerospace/aeronautical engineering.
I got into CS field due to peer pressure. Is it advisable to opt for MS in AE after bachelors in CS??
If yes, will I be ruining my career??