In my college’s department mailing list, there is an interesting discussion about the quality of IT bachelor degree in the workplace. There are some reasons behind that:
- The bachelor graduate worker lacking practical skills. They can not answer a fundamental question that every IT or computer science graduate should know.
- The bachelor graduate worker also lacking soft skills, like how to speak with the higher-ups and communicate with another workers.
As a result, the companies prefer to hire a vocational IT graduate. Why?
- A vocational graduate sometimes have the practical skills that a bachelor graduate didn’t have. Computer science or IT is a wide spread knowledge. It means you didn’t have to go to the college just the learn how to program. It’s all over the clouds. So the learning materials are reachable to everyone.
- Vocational graduates are easier to manage. Some of them have more respect to the higher-ups than the bachelor graduates.
- The standard salary for the vocational graduates is less expensive than the bachelor graduates. Combine this factor with better skills and higher respect means that bachelor graduates’s job opportunities are in a grave danger.
What to do then? First, college students must realized that all the materials given in the class is not enough. They must learning all the practical skills by themselves using the courses as the foundations. Doing some experiments, make a study group, looking for a project. There are a lot of Open Source project that they can contribute. As long as it didn’t bother the class, then do it. Another things, take the internship program in a great place, like a software house or a big company. The bigger the company, the higher the amounts of experience that could be taken.
Without further ado, then, here are Joel’s Seven Pieces of Free Advice for Computer Science College Students (worth what you paid for them):
- Learn how to write before graduating.
- Learn C before graduating.
- Learn microeconomics before graduating.
- Don’t blow off non-CS classes just because they’re boring.
- Take programming-intensive courses.
- Stop worrying about all the jobs going to India.
- No matter what you do, get a good summer internship.
Now for the explanations, unless you’re gullible enough to do all that stuff just because I tell you to, in which case add: 8. Seek professional help for that self-esteem thing.
That’s a great advice. You should check his article of you have time.
If you are an IT or computer science college students, I suggest you to improve your practical skills so that you can compete with the vocational graduates. Don’t be a smart ass and feeling high and mighty, because there are a lot of skillful people out there. Remember, computer science or information technology is not an exclusive knowledge.
Stay hungry, stay foolish (Steve Jobs)
Graduation at SIAS by Quimbero, licensed as Public Domain