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A computer science degree ‘opens a lot of different doors’

BY Jenna DutcherJuly 07, 2022, 1:03 PM

Illustration by Martin Laksman

The next time you join a computer network, download a new app to your phone, or back up an amount of vacation photos to the hard drive, have a computer scientist to thank. But what do computer science practitioners really do?

Jobs run at the root of titles, pay, and responsibilities, and employment in computer and information technology jobs is likely to grow 13% from 2020 to 2030, leading to the creation of more than 667,000 bags. work, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is a faster growth rate than average for all jobs across the country. And computer science has experienced more and more job growth; the industry also saw a median annual salary of $ 97,430 through May 2021.

Each of the positions in the broader computer science industry draws on first -hand work experience, additional training, and varying levels of education to meet the needs of computer users wherever they are. And when it comes to the various fields in which computer science graduates can find work, heaven is the limit.

Intrigue for all kinds of intellectual curiosity

Graduates of a master’s degree program in computer science may go on to pursue a wide range of jobs in a variety of industries, but common roles include:

  • Computer and information research scientistswho are looking for new ways to use computer technology.
  • Computer network architectswho is responsible for designing and building data communication networks.
  • Computer programmerswho creates code for software and applications.
  • Computer systems analystswho is tasked with improving the effectiveness of existing computer systems.
  • Database managers and architectsbuilding and repairing data storage systems.
  • Information security analystswho work to protect computer networks and systems.
  • Network and computer system administratorscoordinating the day-to-day needs of networks and computer systems.

“Computer science opens up a lot of different doors for you,” says developer Lauren Schaefer, “and you can get into a lot of different industries.”

Schaefer currently works for writing with the help of software technology company Grammarly. After earning his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science, and working for nearly a decade as a software engineer, he acquired the same skills along with his passion in the field to position himself as a respected developer. to the developer.

Of course, his days are now very different. Schaefer speaks at developer conferences, works to bring developers together online and offline, and creates written content and other media that help communicate technical concepts to developers and consumers. It was a task he made for himself from his education, skills, and broad interest in the nuances of computer science.

But with a hands-on computer science background, how did he start this kind of advocacy position? While working in a previous role at IBM, Schaefer found the perfect match between his computer science education and his communication talents, volunteering to write articles facing the developer and creating other relevant media about the division’s latest release. One advocacy project led to another, and a new career was born.

Computer science careers: branch out by diving in

Schaefer’s story may be unique for a computer science graduate, but he’s not alone in shaping his own career path.

Kathy Pham is another example. Pham earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science from the Georgia Institute of Technology and from Supelec in Metz, France. After stints at United States Digital Service (USDS), Google, IBM, and Harris Healthcare, he is now putting his computer science education to work as Deputy Chief Technology Officer for the Federal Trade Commission.

A degree in computer science opens up many opportunities, Pham says: “You may be interested in many things, whether it’s health care, medicine, automobiles, shopping, marketing, gardening, agriculture, your it’s called – there are some areas today where a tech or engineer or computer science degree is necessary or very useful, because it’s in everything we do today. “

Schaefer agrees: “There’s the quote that everyone says: ‘Software eats up the world.’ But if you are interested in space, you can work for a space company.If you are interested in developer tools, which is what I love, you can work for a company that builds developer tools.If you are interested in finance, you can do that.And so having developer skills gives you a lot of options and a lot of ease.

How to take computer science from basic to broad

A bachelor’s degree in computer science, such as one held by Schaefer from North Carolina State University or the degree Pham earned from the Georgia Institute of Technology, can be a good first step toward a lifelong working career. in computer science or a related field, such as developer advocacy.

Students enrolled in a computer science program at an undergraduate level will learn the principles and important curriculum, including basic and advanced computer programming coursework, modules on computer networks and operating systems, and coursework. in databases, also from basic to advanced.

However, while a bachelor’s degree in computer science will definitely open doors, special learning with a graduate education can be valuable. From the study of programming languages ​​to coursework in information security, machine learning, or even real-world business applications to computer science, the targeted coursework offered at the master’s level can prepare students. candidates for their future careers in a way that can do certain things.

And the average salary goes up to match — research from compensation data aggregator Payscale finds that job holders with bachelor’s degrees in computer science earn an average of $ 87,000 per year, while those with a master’s degree in computer science earn an average of $ 87,000 per year. $ 107,000 per year.

For people who are passionate about computer science topics, interested in a well -paying job, or simply interested in a flexible career path that can lead to a variety of titles and industries, the submission of a computer science education is a good first step.

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