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Well it could come down to the following simplistic characterisation: Maths Sup is a big family, HEC is a gladiator fight. Something to do with laboratory geeks on one hand, and business tycoons on the other hand.

The calculator event comes from the Lycée de Fermat (where I sat for the exams). We were warned by teachers that this had happened in the past and to stay alert (and report anyone interfering with our exam basically).

by Alex in Toulouse on Sat Mar 25th, 2006 at 06:28:07 PM EST
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My impression is that engineering GE students were much more likely to be lefties than business school students, which makes sense. (They are also a lot geekier, no surprise)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sat Mar 25th, 2006 at 06:29:49 PM EST
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One very nice thing about the engineering GEs, is that apart from Mines/Centrale which we have to consider seperately, the ENSIs are all so specialised that good students and not-as-good students can be seperated by specialisation rather than only by prestige.

ie. the best students get the most "trendy" specialisations (aeronautics...), while the worst students get the least "trendy" ones (paper), and like I pointed out with the example of my friend above, paper is just another specialisation, it doesn't make you any less of an engineer than an electronics one. Thus even if the "paper" school is less prestigious, it won't be a problem because you'll only be competing against paper specialists anyways.

This doesn't exist in HEC ... mainly because the school I went to is one of very few public schools (I think there are only two). All the others are private which means that students are discriminated upon by business prestige alone (ie by a school's budget and its lobbying relations, more than by any specialisation).

Sorry I'm tired, I don't know if I'm making any sense here.

by Alex in Toulouse on Sat Mar 25th, 2006 at 06:39:52 PM EST
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It makes sense to me. My experience is that most GE engineers are competent and up to the tasks expected of young engineers. Some are faster than others or able to see the big picture more easily, so there are differences, but all are valued by French and foreign companies alike.

Over and out for tonight.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sat Mar 25th, 2006 at 06:51:20 PM EST
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