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Anyone have a degree in Computer Science?


kojitsari
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Hi everyone,I've been debating tossing away a few scholarships to go after a degree in computer science. I was wondering if anyone who has this degree (or equivalent) would be willing to share the type of job they actually hold/what they do with it. The information about the programs offered at various colleges basically boil it down to IT/programming/other options. Yet I can't find the other options described anywhere :/. Just about any info you can give would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance

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Hi everyone,I've been debating tossing away a few scholarships to go after a degree in computer science. I was wondering if anyone who has this degree (or equivalent) would be willing to share the type of job they actually hold/what they do with it. The information about the programs offered at various colleges basically boil it down to IT/programming/other options. Yet I can't find the other options described anywhere :/. Just about any info you can give would be appreciated.

 

Thanks in advance

 

I do and I work in Data Warehousing/Application Development.

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Not computer sciences,  I did degrees in multimedia software design and software engineering. I haven't worked in computing for over a decade though. Computer science is a relatively generic computing degree,  so your electives would probably impact career choices.  

 

When I did use my degree I worked for a local authority basically doing everything from network installs to developing their in house systems (a mix but mostly c or cobol). I did some freelance stuff for schools,  mostly installs. I also ran a small hosting company from a few years with some coworkers,  nothing huge,  just a small suite. 

 

Looking back I was a fool,  should have gone premed. It can be a great job and there still is good money for some folks but it isn't easy money. 

 

Just thinking about the other options question, database are one area, HCI is another,  hardware engineering also. 

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I'm personally a mechanical engineer, but at my place of employment, the guys with computer science degrees that we hire write the software to run the equipment that we make.  This is for large scale material handling systems like warehouses. The software they write also makes the whole system operate as efficiently as possible for the customer.

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I'm a software engineer (it's a computer science degree). Right now, I work for a company that develops embedded system solutions for monitoring assets and facilities using cloud managed platforms. It's good work. Challenging and fun.

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Looking back I was a fool, should have gone premed. It can be a great job and there still is good money for some folks but it isn't easy money.

 

That's what I'm considering giving up scholarships for, at St Louis University in case anyone was curious(pre med: neuro surgery). The major downsides are Obama care has effectively made private practice unprofitable and is leading to severe pay cuts already at hosptials(I have a cousin whos a general practicioner at a hospital and the new people they've hired have been hired for 140k less a year than she was three years ago). Its basically turned into a game of law suits, either suing to get your money from people without insurance or getting sued sheerly as an attempt to get "free money" by the people you help. It seems a lot less worthwhile to put in 5-6 years (due to having 80 hours worth of college credits at my high school graduation) and have all the debt from med school now (scholarships do not transfer past your 4 year:(...).

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So many quick responses, I can't Google things fast enough to keep up xD. I really appreciate all of you guys taking the time to respond, I have a lot of new things to become acquainted with!

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That's what I'm considering giving up scholarships for, at St Louis University in case anyone was curious(pre med: neuro surgery). The major downsides are Obama care has effectively made private practice unprofitable and is leading to severe pay cuts already at hosptials(I have a cousin whos a general practicioner at a hospital and the new people they've hired have been hired for 140k less a year than she was three years ago). Its basically turned into a game of law suits, either suing to get your money from people without insurance or getting sued sheerly as an attempt to get "free money" by the people you help. It seems a lot less worthwhile to put in 5-6 years (due to having 80 hours worth of college credits at my high school graduation) and have all the debt from med school now (scholarships do not transfer past your 4 year:(...).

I'd stick with medicine tbh. Pay and conditions will fluctuate over time with different governments but it's a better long term choice. Once my kids leave for college I'll likely come out of semi retirement and give medicine a shot. 

If you don't have a passion for computing and or previous experience you will find it tougher. If I may be completely honest,  and this isn't intended as a criticism,  I went through college with a lot of people who decided computing was the career for them based on the fact they thought the money would be good.  They had no experience or real interest in computing and the majority didn't even finish the degree. There were exceptions but I firmly believe those were the types who would have done well at anything. The rest of us had mostly already taught ourselves the curriculum before we stayed the degree so we spent the time at college advising the facilities and staff to work on projects.  Looking back I would say follow your heart,  if you have a passion for medicine follow it. If you have a passion for photography follow that. You'd also be amazed what jobs you can do without an appropriate degree.  Not trying to put you off :) just making sure you understand that if you have no experience in computing yet you will have a lot of work to do to catch up and if you don't love it you have to be insanely disciplined. 

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I'd stick with medicine tbh. Pay and conditions will fluctuate over time with different governments but it's a better long term choice. Once my kids leave for college I'll likely come out of semi retirement and give medicine a shot.

If you don't have a passion for computing and or previous experience you will find it tougher. If I may be completely honest, and this isn't intended as a criticism, I went through college with a lot of people who decided computing was the career for them based on the fact they thought the money would be good. They had no experience or real interest in computing and the majority didn't even finish the degree. There were exceptions but I firmly believe those were the types who would have done well at anything. The rest of us had mostly already taught ourselves the curriculum before we stayed the degree so we spent the time at college advising the facilities and staff to work on projects. Looking back I would say follow your heart, if you have a passion for medicine follow it. If you have a passion for photography follow that. You'd also be amazed what jobs you can do without an appropriate degree. Not trying to put you off :) just making sure you understand that if you have no experience in computing yet you will have a lot of work to do to catch up and if you don't love it you have to be insanely disciplined.

Im really not looking at it for the money(granted the fact that it pays around and into over 100k a year is a bonus :P), I was the odd little kid who took apart a computer when he was 7 because he wanted to see how it worked. I love building computers (new to it however due to the cost involved), I'm the person in my family/friend circle who gets asked to look at all things technological before they get taken to a repair store. I really don't know very much in any programming language, just barely enough java to make the odd minecraft modd and a really tiny bit of c++. As for passion/determination, I've always been a techie and I do love a challenge. That was my number one reason I picked med school, I need a challenge because I pick up things easily but school has always been the easiest(I graduated high school two years early with a tiny bit over 80 college credits from an actual college, not dual credit). I've never really felt an inclination one way or another except for technology and video games(but pro gaming isn't really a stable carrier if you're looking to eventually have a family lol).

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I have a degree in Information Systems and Decision Sciences. It is a programming and statistics program. It is different from CS in that it is a Business degree instead of a Science degree. At least that is how it is structured at my Alma Mater.

 

I currently work for a company doing everything from writing .Net based web apps to database administration and general IT projects. Mostly Management Information Systems and End user data collection. So I work very closely in terms of what my degree is intended. 

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I have a Bachelors and Masters in Computer Science (and part way to a Ph.D. that I'll never finish) and work as a software developer for a company that is widely regarded as one of the best employers in the US.  I love my job and working for my employer, but the degrees aren't what got me there (at least not alone).  The passion for technology and problem solving is (plus a little natural aptitude and some luck).   Figure out what you're most excited about and do that.  The rest will fall into place.

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I have a Bachelors and Masters in Computer Science (and part way to a Ph.D. that I'll never finish) and work as a software developer for a company that is widely regarded as one of the best employers in the US. I love my job and working for my employer, but the degrees aren't what got me there (at least not alone). The passion for technology and problem solving is (plus a little natural aptitude and some luck). Figure out what you're most excited about and do that. The rest will fall into place.

If I may ask, why didn't you/why aren't you ever going to get your PHD? I was planning on going after one myself.
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If I may ask, why didn't you/why aren't you ever going to get your PHD? I was planning on going after one myself.

 

It doesn't hold a lot of value in the Computer Science area unless you intend to teach, or you're looking to go into an area of pure theory or research where the Ph.D. is basically an entry requirement.  Although I taught some classes while I was getting my Masters, and I actually enjoyed teaching quite a bit, I found I'm most content digging in and solving practical problems and building things.  There are folks that I work with that have Ph.D.'s in my group, and I do the exact same work they do.

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It doesn't hold a lot of value in the Computer Science area unless you intend to teach, or you're looking to go into an area of pure theory or research where the Ph.D. is basically an entry requirement. Although I taught some classes while I was getting my Masters, and I actually enjoyed teaching quite a bit, I found I'm most content digging in and solving practical problems and building things. There are folks that I work with that have Ph.D.'s in my group, and I do the exact same work they do.

Ah so it just adds another career path, thanks for explaing.

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So many quick responses, I can't Google things fast enough to keep up xD. I really appreciate all of you guys taking the time to respond, I have a lot of new things to become acquainted with!

 

I would say my advice is to go into college with an open mind and just start off by declaring Computer Science as your major since that is your true interest.  Take a few introduction courses and you trust me you will know quickly if this is the type of work you want to do for your career.  You should be doing something for your career that you enjoy and not only for the money.  

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I agree with Digi. I am not in development (I sell it) but one of our best developers does not have a degree.  He is self taught and started his first job right out of high school.  He has told me just because you earn a degree or self taught in this field does not mean you are finished.  Technology changes almost everyday. You have to stay ahead of the game.

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Both my college roommates were CS majors.  One is is charge of the student database server/online portal/programmer at our college (does a lot of code writing!),and the other writes code for a company that makes medical records management software.

 

If you're curious, we all went to Moravian College in Bethlehem, PA.  Both of them also double majored in math.  (FWIW, I have a BS in Math and I'm a math teacher!)

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I am a 3rd year science and technology major, which is a research centric study but not the same as a computer scientist study. My dealings are hardware related. My father was a software engineer in the early 1980s in San Francisco and has yielded a 20+year healthy-ish career writing and developing software for +-14th largest company in the US. If you are passionate about technology and accepting that this will ultimately be the industry that will be supporting you and eventually your family and still think ditching your other offers is best for you then go for it. What are these other scholarships?

-William

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I am a 3rd year science and technology major, which is a research centric study but not the same as a computer scientist study. My dealings are hardware related. My father was a software engineer in the early 1980s in San Francisco and has yielded a 20+year healthy-ish career writing and developing software for +-14th largest company in the US. If you are passionate about technology and accepting that this will ultimately be the industry that will be supporting you and eventually your family and still think ditching your other offers is best for you then go for it. What are these other scholarships?

-William

The main ones I'm having trouble giving up are to SLU. They're 46-48 thousand dollars a semester including room and board, I received a few through the school and one based through alumni(for 14k a semester that I only get if I go pre med). I basically would end up paying 6k a year to go there(pretty cheap for them actually). Itd be a very good deal for pre med schooling.

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Im really not looking at it for the money(granted the fact that it pays around and into over 100k a year is a bonus :P), I was the odd little kid who took apart a computer when he was 7 because he wanted to see how it worked. I love building computers (new to it however due to the cost involved), I'm the person in my family/friend circle who gets asked to look at all things technological before they get taken to a repair store. I really don't know very much in any programming language, just barely enough java to make the odd minecraft modd and a really tiny bit of c++. As for passion/determination, I've always been a techie and I do love a challenge. That was my number one reason I picked med school, I need a challenge because I pick up things easily but school has always been the easiest(I graduated high school two years early with a tiny bit over 80 college credits from an actual college, not dual credit). I've never really felt an inclination one way or another except for technology and video games(but pro gaming isn't really a stable carrier if you're looking to eventually have a family lol).

Excellent, you sound like a good candidate then. The money does vary hugely, I made far more money as a photographer than I did coding. Higher paying jobs are out there, many of them are high paying these days, the average has probably gone up as many of the mid level and low level jobs got offshored.  

 

Two things that will play a big factor in scoring a job are certifications )where appropriate) and experience. As mentioned doctorates  are less of a factor in computing, the time and money is better spent elsewhere. CompSci degrees tend to leave you with a huge amount of slack time and brain capacity, spend it on playing (google runs coding challenges which would be good). A good degree will likely teach you at least two stages of programming, from assembler, procedural and OO, learn beyond the books. You can pickup coding work online, this will help buff your CV and test what you are learning, leave college with more than your degrees. I would suggest also ignoring some industry prejudices. I got the opportunity to pickup oracle certification and a lot of folks looked down on Access \ Jet because they didn't understand what it was trying to do, but out in the workplace I spent way more time using Access because you can prototype a front end or even having a working model in a few hours instead of days or weeks in Oracle. They thought that the limitations of Jet crippled access when in reality you can just move the front end over to point at a mysql\mssql store and rock on at a much larger scale.

 

I would also try and learn some older languages, many company have legacy systems that they won't replace until they cannot get the parts from ebay anymore. In 2001 I was working with reel to reel ~120MB tape drives running on a mainframe that was straight out of buck rodgers. Seriously, filing cabinet sized tape drives, flashing lights and beedy beep sounds but the damn thing ran most of the time and the cost to replace was enough to justify keeping it until it imploded. Being the person with experience in the hardware and some software experience can land you extra pay. Ebay is freaking awesome for use kit thats come off lease, dell c6100's plus a cisco lab and you have your own network to play on :)

 

If I had to go back into computing tomorrow I would probably pick security. Challenging and good money and like medicine the need isn't going away, plus its unlikely to be offshored. It's a brave company that sends its network security work to India :)

 

Anyhows good luck, feel free to ask any more questions \ PM, I'll try and get in the lounge at some point.

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Excellent, you sound like a good candidate then. The money does vary hugely, I made far more money as a photographer than I did coding. Higher paying jobs are out there, many of them are high paying these days, the average has probably gone up as many of the mid level and low level jobs got offshored.

 

Two things that will play a big factor in scoring a job are certifications )where appropriate) and experience. As mentioned doctorates are less of a factor in computing, the time and money is better spent elsewhere. CompSci degrees tend to leave you with a huge amount of slack time and brain capacity, spend it on playing (google runs coding challenges which would be good). A good degree will likely teach you at least two stages of programming, from assembler, procedural and OO, learn beyond the books. You can pickup coding work online, this will help buff your CV and test what you are learning, leave college with more than your degrees. I would suggest also ignoring some industry prejudices. I got the opportunity to pickup oracle certification and a lot of folks looked down on Access \ Jet because they didn't understand what it was trying to do, but out in the workplace I spent way more time using Access because you can prototype a front end or even having a working model in a few hours instead of days or weeks in Oracle. They thought that the limitations of Jet crippled access when in reality you can just move the front end over to point at a mysql\mssql store and rock on at a much larger scale.

 

I would also try and learn some older languages, many company have legacy systems that they won't replace until they cannot get the parts from ebay anymore. In 2001 I was working with reel to reel ~120MB tape drives running on a mainframe that was straight out of buck rodgers. Seriously, filing cabinet sized tape drives, flashing lights and beedy beep sounds but the damn thing ran most of the time and the cost to replace was enough to justify keeping it until it imploded. Being the person with experience in the hardware and some software experience can land you extra pay. Ebay is freaking awesome for use kit thats come off lease, dell c6100's plus a cisco lab and you have your own network to play on :)

 

If I had to go back into computing tomorrow I would probably pick security. Challenging and good money and like medicine the need isn't going away, plus its unlikely to be offshored. It's a brave company that sends its network security work to India :)

 

Anyhows good luck, feel free to ask any more questions \ PM, I'll try and get in the lounge at some point.

I really think I might go ahead and grab a PhD, I have my general college requirments (basic standards all schools require) already. Plus apparently a "full time student" is someone taking 12-13 credit hours a semester -_-(which explains why generations seem dumber as we continue on), where as I'm comfortable with 17-18 credit hours, I've done it before(still have time to game/chill however and spend quality time with the opposite gender ^_^). So pathing things out itd be the same time it'd normally take to get a masters degree maybe less. Plus I don't plan on living in my current area (MO weather is bipolar and super fickle) so having the option to teach for a bit could come in handy. I'm definitely going to do my best to become profectient in 3-5 languages by the end of the summer, I just need to find a few decent books or possibly a something on the interwebs for a guide.

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