Looking for the Lab’s current members? Please follow this link to find the Lab’s team roster (past students, post-docs, researchers and visitors): Lab Roster!
About Joining my Team: ALSETLab
- Do you want to be part of the team? please read on below!!!
- I have compiled this information to save both, YOU and me, our valuable time. There is important information regarding admission to graduate studies at RPI.
- To work in my team as an undergrad, MSc or PhD student under my supervision you have to be currently enrolled or formally admitted for graduate studies at RPI.
- Before you get in touch, read the text below! If you don’t read it will be obvious to me that you are just sending emails to multiple faculty without considering my requirements and my time. Bad start, so keep reading…
- If you don’t read the stuff below, and contact me anyway, I will reply to you asking read the text below! So, you might as well keep reading…
Are you an undergrad or grad student at RPI?
- If you are an undergraduate at RPI, just get in touch with me to book a meeting! Send an email to luigi dot vanfretti at gmail dot com
- If you are a graduate student at RPI, please first check with your faculty advisor!
Are you at another university in the USA or outside the USA?
- It is not necessary to contact me prior to application.
- For us to work together, you first need to apply for admission to our graduate program.
- Indicate that you want to work with me in your documentation once you have fulfilled the requirements for admission.
- Before you apply, please read the information below.
About the Admission Process and Funding Support Schemes
While I encourage you to apply, note that the admission to our program is subject to both the institute’s admission process, and the departmental selection, where faculty (like me) do not have the final word in admission. * I can only consider your case after you have gone through the admission process and provided that I have relevant funding to support you.*
Funding Support for Graduate Studies:
If you are accepted to RPI’s graduate program, there are two forms of support:
- As a Teaching Assistant (TA): A teaching assistantship entitles you to a tuition waiver and you will be hired to help as a teaching assistant for 2 courses per semester, for which you will be paid a modest stipend.
- This is a job which you are expected to carry out while taking courses and doing research - it is not a scholarship - you are supposed to be doing the three things simultaneously.
- This means that you technically don’t have to pay for your graduate school during the period when you are supported as a TA (minor feeds, relocation, etc… needs to come from your pocket.)
- This period is up to 4 semesters (two academic calendar years), and it does not include support during the summer break.
- I was a TA myself during my first year at RPI, it is a great opportunity to figure out if you want to be a teacher, and also to work with a Professor with whom you want to work towards your PhD and can likely fund your work through an RA.
- As a Research Assistant (RA): A research assistantship is similar to the TA position, with the difference that you do not have to help in the teaching or grading of courses or labs; and, it typically covers also the summer. (That means you will also receive a stipend during the summer).
- An RA position is not a scholarship, you will be working in a research project that is funded by industry or through national research funds. You are expected to work exclusively in the research specific to the project all of the time except when you are taking courses.
- Moreover, if you want to work with me as your supervisor, I will expect you to work exclusively in projects that are of my interest. If you want to pursue your own ideas, please find another faculty to be your supervisor.
During and after admission (as a TA or RA, or self-funded):
If you plan to pay for your graduate studies (self-funded), you will still be expected to work within my research area and within one of my research efforts. You are also expected to deliver at the same rate as other students under an RA. While there is some flexibility on what specific project you can work on, I have an ambitious research agenda and ideas that I want to pursue - you are welcome to contribute to this agenda, but if you have your own ideas that differ from my agenda, I suggest you find other faculty to work with.
During the admission process, I might contact you if I have funding and/or interest on you. This initial contact does not mean you are admitted and that I will supervise you. Most likely I will give you a short research task to see if you are capable of working with me, this does not imply that you will be admitted.
If you are interested to work with me and are admitted to RPI with a TA: this does not imply that I can immediately support you to work as a Research Assistant after the first 1 or 2 semesters.
- If admitted, and offered a Teaching Assistantship, you will be able to shop around to see who you want to work with at the ECSE department. Other faculty may have interest in you, you might have a better chemistry with other supervisors, and/or more importantly, other faculty might have the funding to support you as an RA.
- For me, funding an RA is a risk (I have limited funding), I need to know you well-enough before I fund you. So, if you want to work with me, I will give you a short project and see if you can deal with the kind of things I work with. If we have good working relationship and you are capable of doing the work, I can see how to get some funding to support you; however, I make absolutely no commitments unless I have accepted this risk and personally discussed it with you when you start working with me.
RPI’s Admission Requirements
List of Requirements
- Visit RPI’s Grad. Admission website to find out about the requirements here.
- IMPORTANT: Check if you are in one of the Embargoed and Sanctioned Countries here, if you are, please contact admissions office before applying, here.
- * Note: *** As a national research institution in the United States, Rensselaer’s activities are subject to restrictions by the U.S. government, including export-related restrictions. **This makes it increasingly difficult for the Institute to accept students or visitors who are nationals of embargoed countries. Unfortunately, if you are from of those embargoed countries, it is unlikely that RPI will admitt you.
Test Scores: Minimum Requirements
- TOEFL score of 230 CBT/88 iBT/570 PBT (IELTS 6.5 or PTE 60)
- GRE Scores:
- Category 1. Verbal: 156, Quantitative: 146, Analytical: 4.0
- Category 2. Verbal: 149, Quantitative: 155, Analytical: 3.5
- ** Don’t shoot for the minimum! ** The list above tells you the ** minimum ** scores for Institute-wide admission. Note that you are competing against applicants from everywhere in the world, and obviously, this means that your scores will be used as a basis for ranking you for admission. Don’t shoot for the minimum, get as high scores as possible.
Study for the tests! Really!
RPI has the score requirements above for our graduate program in Electrical Engineering. It is very difficult (not to say impossible) to admit a student for graduate studies if the scores are not met, specially the GRE/Quantitative score.
Also, you should be aware that many other students will be applying, and good GRE scores is an easy way of differentiating yourself from other applicants.
Before you do anything, and specially before taking the tests, you should prepare very well to attain the marks suggested above. Here’s what you can do to prepare:
- Take a course: here or here.
- Prepare using a practice book or website: here is a free one.
- Repeat steps 1. and 2. above.
Where the list of available available positions or scope of work you are looking for?
Now that you have read the information above, please find the available positions described here.
Just to check that you read, start your email by writing in the subject line: “Tesla was the man!” or “Modelica for the win!” or “PMUs for the masses!”.