03/09/2015 01:20 pm ET Updated Mar 09, 2015

Want A Job In Silicon Valley After Yale? Good Luck With That


Max Nova, a technology entrepreneur, graduated from Yale University, as did his father and grandfather. Yet Nova couldn't convince his sister or twin brothers to accept offers of admission to his alma mater because of the school's weak computer science department.

Nova's sister chose Harvard University and later found a job at Microsoft. His brothers are majoring in computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “We're totally getting left in the dust by our peer institutions,” Nova says. “We're getting swamped.”

Yale, one of the world's top universities in most respects, has fallen behind in computer science. It doesn't crack the highest tier of schools measured by the number of graduates in software companies or by salaries for majors in the discipline; it's struggling to educate throngs of students with a faculty about the same size as three decades ago; top students in the field are opting to enroll elsewhere; the head of its computer science department is publicly complaining; and undergraduates are circulating a petition in protest.

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