Santa Clara University and other Universities in the Region
Before I answer your question, there are a few assumptions I will have to make given the fact that I am not very familiar with your profile.
I think we are talking about the three following universities:
San Diego State University
San Jose State University
Santa Clara University
While SDSU and SJSU are state, USC is private like the other USC, the University of Southern California.
My observations are based entirely on my interactions with the students we have sent to all three universities.
In the broader context of placements and internships, SJSU and USC are at the same level. Both schools offer industry ready programs that are mentored by distinguished faculty who work in the Valley. Both offer robust career services and internships to their students and post degree employment is near 100% for computer science and related master’s degrees. This, however, may not be necessarily true for other master’s level degree programs at either school. Finally, both schools offer great proximity to the Valley because they ARE right in the Valley in a manner of speaking.
That said, there is a significant difference between the two-- cost. USC is a much smaller private university run by the Jesuit community when compared with SJSU. If you have deep pockets, you should apply to both. If your pockets are not deep enough, apply only to SJSU.
SJSU will want to see your stash of cash up front. Therefore organize your bank statements well in advance of filing the application.
Lately, we have noticed that SJSU has become increasingly competitive and applicants with very respectable GRE scores, decent percentages and workex are being rejected outright. San Jose State University for an MCS degree is no longer a done deal like it was previously. You will need to apply to other schools simultaneously as a part of your safe strategy.
SJSU is a great progressive school. They just waived the SAT requirement for undergraduate students two days ago.
You must have noticed that I have not referenced San Diego State University in this equation. There is a good reason. SDSU, while offering a good computer science program, is not really known as a tech school. I think geography has a small role to play in this context.
Another school you should definitely look at if you wish to pursue computer science at the postgraduate level in the same region is California Polytechnic State University, located in San Luis Obispo, Cal Poly for short. Like San Jose State University, Cal Poly is a state school and a member of the 23 strong California State University system. We like this school for its high end tech focus and affordability. If you are fine with a slightly higher budget, we will be happy to recommend a few other schools in the area that are known for their graduate level computer science programs.
The universities I have mentioned thus far are India-friendly schools and welcome students from India. If you want us to help you gain an admit to any one of the schools reviewed here or any other university for that matter, please write to us.