I am a high school student having difficulty choosing between two undergraduate programs. My goal is to eventually work with quantum computing (computer science+physics) at the postdoctoral level. My question concerns whether undergraduate or graduate school is more influential for a given field of study.
The first university, Stanford, offers the possibility of getting a dual degree in both CS and physics, but has no serious quantum computing research. The second, Harvard, has a cutting-edge quantum computing research lab and is right next to MIT where there are other opportunities for research/classes. Harvard only offers joint degrees in two fields, not dual degrees.
I was considering attending Stanford for undergrad to get a solid foundation in both CS and physics, then applying to Harvard for grad school to do research.
Here’s my question:
How important is doing research in your specific field of interest as an undergraduate? Is it better to just take the opportunity to go to Harvard’s lab for undergrad, then look elsewhere for graduate school? Or, is it more advisable to get separate degrees in CS and physics and then apply for graduate research in Harvard's lab?
My main concern is that the lack of quantum computing research at Stanford will be a major hindrance. Will doing other unrelated research in CS or physics as an undergrad suffice just as well in the long run?