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Re: quickest way to a programming job

Carl G.
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"happyrav" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
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> For those of you who work as programmers, what is your opinion of
> college education vs. self education? Does it come down to convincing
> an employer to hire you by showing him some programs you wrote?
> I want to get a job programming ASAP without wasting the next 4-5
> years of my life going to college.
> I learned enough about computers on my own to have been doing tech
> support for the last 4 years, sometimes making more money than my
> parents, with only a high school diploma. Am I just lucky, or can you
> still make it in the Industry with out a time consuming degree?

I work for a major aerospace contractor. For the "high paying" jobs, they
are looking for people with college degrees (science and engineering). The
majority of the engineers in my department have degrees in physics. The
skills that make them valuable to our company are not just their ability to
use computers, program computers, and configure computer hardware (which are
very common skills). The skills that make them valuable are their knowledge
of mathematics and physics, their ability to communicate, their ability to
organize and complete projects, and their ability to work with others.
College is one way to develop these skills, and develop the ability to learn
new ones.

Most of my computer skills were "self taught", but I would have had a hard
time teaching myself the mathematics used in my computer programs (vectors,
integral and differential calculus, tensors, etc.), or the physics
(Newtonian mechanics, electronics, quantum mechanics, semiconductor physics,
orbital mechanics, optics, etc.). I don't use everything I learned in
college at work, but even the "off-major" classes (e.g., classes in
literature, history, art, economics, philosophy, archery, fencing, etc.)
have benefited me.

If your only goal is "making more money", then you will miss out on the most
important things in life. Unless you have an immediate deep financial need
(e.g., you need to feed your family), I would suggest that you give college
a try. If you do decide to go to college, don't "waste the next 4-5 years",
but enjoy the experience and make the most of it.

Carl G.

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THanks alot everyone for the input. i have alot better idea of what i
should be doing. anyone else who wants to give their 2 cents, i would
like ot hear it.
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