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US CompSci Enrollment Leaps For 5th Straight Year

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the they-heard-about-the-snacks-and-dancing dept.

Education 176

dcblogs writes "The number of new undergraduate computing majors in U.S. computer science departments increased more than 29% last year, a pace called 'astonishing' by the Computing Research Association. The increase was the fifth straight annual computer science enrollment gain, according to the CRA's annual survey of computer science departments at Ph.D.-granting institutions. The survey also found that more students are earning a Ph.D., with 1,929 degrees granted — an 8.2% increase over the prior year. The pool of undergraduate students represented in the CRA survey is 67,850. Of that number, 57,500 are in computer science."

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Career with no Prospect (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123037)

Yes, it is astonishing considering how many jobs are available.

Re:Career with no Prospect (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123387)

Comments like this absolutely make my day. (That was sarcasm).

I truly hope this 'sky is falling' mentality in regard to prospects of a career in CS prevalent here is a bit overstated and pessimistic.

Re:Career with no Prospect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123485)

OP sounds sarcastic, but I have no idea whether he is targeting the optimists or the pessimists. It could be taken either way.

Re:Career with no Prospect (2)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | about 2 years ago | (#43123503)

It is, if you're under 30 there are plenty of jobs. But as soon as your salary reaches a certain point, manage or panhandle.

Re:Career with no Prospect (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123541)

I...But as soon as your salary reaches a certain point, manage or panhandle.

There's a difference?

Re:Career with no Prospect (1)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | about 2 years ago | (#43123851)

Fewer sunburns, higher risk of street violence.

Re:Career with no Prospect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124097)

Or just become really good at what you do. I'm almost 50, and I make a little over $130K (in a city with a moderate cost of living) - no managing and no panhandling.

Re:Career with no Prospect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123537)

of course it is. i'm no star programmer, i'm only a few years out of school. i make great money now and constantly get emails and voice messages from recruiters because I left my linkedin and monster profiles up.

maybe this is because i live in a good cs jobs location (near dc), but that doesn't mean graduates can't move to such an area and find a job.

Re:Career with no Prospect (1)

Bhrian (531263) | about 2 years ago | (#43123729)

A local company hires CS majors with a year of experience for about $30K. They prefer H1B employees when possible.

Re:Career with no Prospect (1)

gstovall (22014) | about 2 years ago | (#43123875)

I was a hiring manager in the late 90s. Newgrad CS salaries of $70K were common.

How times have changed.

Oh, and that $70K? With inflation, it's equivalent to $97K now.

Re:Career with no Prospect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123951)

In my neck of the woods recent graduates often get offered north of $100k.
I'd like to know where one can find all those people willing to $30k because I have multiple positions opened and even with the 6 figure salaries finding qualified candidates is freaking hard.

Re:Career with no Prospect (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124193)

Anywhere more than a day's drive to the Pacific. In some places making 30k in only 40 hours a week is considered the best non-management can do.

More paycheck hunters! Yeah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123043)

I was one of those back in the 90s. Currently looking for the next bubble to exploit. Please consider me an oxygen thief and let it go at that.

Post-IT Industries? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123361)

Well, each new wave ("bubble") is typically standing on the shoulders of the previous ones. Since IT is over-saturated right now, then I'd assume the next wave(s) will result from the abundance of IT.

So what are the next wave industries of the new post-IT era?

Bioinformatics?
-Couldn't process all that DNA/genomic/proteomic information before IT made it possible. Likewise, the medical breakthroughs possible from this new domain of medicine will be very attractive too.

Robotics? (subset1: 3D printing, automated manufacturing) (subset2: remote tele-operations, undersea or in space)
-With advances in IT have come advances in robotics and AI. Since all the really low-wage manufacturing jobs have gone to China, there's no longer much of a domestic lobby to oppose the replacement of those jobs with automation, so ironically China has cleared the way politically for Western nations to move into automated manufacturing.
Nextly, all this global competition in manufacturing means there's more competition for the raw material resources required for this. This means humanity has to push exploration farther out into less hospitable environments, like remote desolate areas, undersea exploration, and even space. Robots can work best in these areas, where human substitutes are hard-pressed to exist.

Those are my 2 picks for the next big waves, where we'll see more higher-paying jobs.
Can anybody else suggest any others?

my grandmother used to call these people (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123051)

chinaman

Degree Mills (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123057)

This is because colleges are increasingly becoming degree mills and focusing on quantity over quality. Previously, only the cream of the crop would go to college, but now everyone is going to college, college degrees are becoming more and more worthless, and colleges are lowering standards to accommodate all the new imbeciles.

Re:Degree Mills (4, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | about 2 years ago | (#43123267)

That's why you go to a college that actually has standards. There are schools where that is the case, then there are schools that demand a bit more, and you'd be nuts to suggest that the people doing hiring haven't figured out which degrees are valuable and which aren't. At least as far as large employers.

Re:Degree Mills (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123355)

That's why you go to a college that actually has standards.

Or don't go to a college at all and self-educate.

But really, there are fewer decent colleges than there were before, and they are indeed few in number.

and you'd be nuts to suggest that the people doing hiring haven't figured out which degrees are valuable and which aren't.

The people doing the hiring can't even figure out that it's not the piece of paper, but the person's skill, that is valuable. I don't have much faith in PR drones.

Re:Degree Mills (1)

hedwards (940851) | about 2 years ago | (#43123751)

The companies worth working for usually have better HR.

Re:Degree Mills (1)

Tough Love (215404) | about 2 years ago | (#43123837)

The companies worth working for usually have better HR.

What makes you think that?

Re:Degree Mills (2)

BrianRoach (614397) | about 2 years ago | (#43123839)

The companies worth working for have engineers do the interviewing and hiring. HR schedules things and does the paperwork.

Re:Degree Mills (5, Insightful)

Niris (1443675) | about 2 years ago | (#43123377)

Depends on your definition of standards. I go to a local State college because, well, it's local and I can afford it. If you're paying your own way, there's not a lot of chances for you to go to a very high end university for computer science. I am looking at alternatives for when (if) I get my masters, but I may just end up staying here because of that same exact reason.

What's really important for a computer science graduate isn't necessarily the school, but their own independent projects. While my school isn't the best, it does provide enough information to lay down a foundation for further self study, and those of us that are smart enough to take the initiative to learn additional platforms (Android, embedded systems and robotics, etc.) and build portfolios are doing way better than the others who are just in the major because they 'like the Internet' or heard that it pays well. There's a huge degree of separation between myself, who has just been offered an internship as an Android development intern for a large media corporation, and a couple of my friends/drinking buddy classmates who haven't developed their abilities outside of class projects that were required to receive a passing grade.

Re:Degree Mills (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123459)

I hope you are right. I truly do. I'm in a similar situation, and the way the comments here and other places always go with type of story disturb me.

Unfortunately, there isn't much else I've demonstrated any particular talent at, so I take more debt.

Re:Degree Mills (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124031)

Worst case, you take a couple of less than stellar jobs at low pay as you build a bit of a rep, then move up or around. After a few years, your accomplishments are more important than your education, anyway. A 4.0 from MIT might help when securing an interview for Google but most places are more concerned about your ability to reliably deliver. If you can save costs, be it through math, engineering, or intuition, at the same time, most places will be glad to have you. You won't be a rockstar but, unless you like a startup culture, it's not a big deal.

If you don't have the prestigious degree, don't worry about it. Instead, work on business skills (e.g., accounting, taxes, business management, networking, and leadership). Straight out of school in 2003 (less-than-prestigious university), I landed a contract as a software tester. Here's a list of my fuck-ups.
- I didn't know the difference between a contractor and an employee. I just knew that it didn't mean stocking shelves at Home Depot at night for minimum wage.
- I didn't know what I was worth and it may have cost me the job; I was second choice and given the position after first choice bailed.
- I didn't know what I was worth, so I was underpaid.
- I didn't incorporate straight away, how to keep books, or what could be written off. The result is that I've probably paid an extra $15k-$20k in taxes over the past decade.
- I went to H&R Block (Taxes R Us) to get my taxes done the first time I started writing stuff off and trusted them way more that I should have. They missed some deductions and also have a few oddities in my tax filings that could get me audited.
- I didn't socialize enough, which left me out of the loop on important things, like other opportunities and even knowing what the contracting organization was paying other contractors. This probably cost me $5k-$10k in my last year alone.
- I didn't stay in touch. People move around and up; your middle manager today may become a senior manager on a high-profile project tomorrow. Keeping in touch will have more opportunities come to you and will give you a leg up in anything you apply to.
- Stepped on toes like I was drunkenly dancing in clogs. I was fortunate enough to have a manager that was willing to insulate me from the office politics so I could get work done.

What I did do right:
- Studied hard. You'd be amazed how far reading the damn book or instruction manual will get you in life. Study the API, read books on the basics, etc. and you'll be above most people.
- Worked diligently. Good performance gets attention. In my case, I was the lone tester and managed to bring down the defects to a very low level.
- Looked for ways to save time. By the end, I used my programming skills plus some off-the-shelf software to be able to write and perform about 300 pages of tests in the course of a week.
- Asked for that letter of recommendation. When my original supervisor announced he was leaving the organization, I asked if he'd be willing to write a letter of recommendation. That baby is the head-shot of job hunting; whenever I fire off an application, it gets me an interview.
- Joined LinkedIn. Sounds corny but it's a great way to keep contact info at your finger tips. It also makes it easier for ex-bosses to prescreen you for a position; open hiring is time consuming and expensive, so it's possible that there will be a choice between hiring you and starting the massive machinery of open hiring. Remember that most people aren't looking for the best person for the job, they are looking for a person that will do the job well.

The skills I learned at school allowed me to execute my duties well. However, from a personal standpoint, I would have done a lot better if I had embraced the business side of things more. Sadly, I learn mostly from my mistakes and not from the mistakes of others.

Re:Degree Mills (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124059)

There is more money in CS grad depts than almost any other. If you're paying your own way for grad school you're doing it wrong.

Another alternative is to have your employer foot the bill. Most companies will cover one class per semester. (There's a non-trivial tax break that they can then take). Takes longer, but better than loans!

Re:Degree Mills (2)

TheSeatOfMyPants (2645007) | about 2 years ago | (#43123609)

This is where knowing which school someone's degree(s) came from. The top-tier universities in particular are actually harder to get into than ever to the high number of international & American students vying for acceptance. It's the community colleges & generic state/private schools that are being forced to lower their standards, and that's not because the students are stupid -- it's because so many are being pushed through the K-12 system with abilities that wouldn't have gotten them past the third grade 20 years ago.

That's speaking both as a 30something aware I wouldn't get into my high-ranked alma mater if my 18-year-old self applied today, and as someone that tutored & the graded papers of local community college freshmen in the mid-late 90s & 2002. The kids in the 90s basically needed help editing their papers or other college-level stuff; the ones in '02 were barely fucking literate despite being white middle-class native English speakers without learning disabilities, and the instructor told me it had been like that for 2-3 years by then, but that the dean said we couldn't flunk anyone unless they turned *nothing* in.

That said, the main reason for going to college isn't supposed to be job training for the elite -- it's to learn the many things that result in a well-informed citizen and aren't available by just hanging around one's hometown or just traveling for a year or two. That's why our government decided to begin educating our population rather than leaving it to the elite, why it's traditional to have students take courses in multiple fields unrelated to what they *think* they'll want to do with their lives for at least the first 2 years, and why a hell of a lot of students at the good schools find their viewpoints or awareness of what's really going on shifting broadly during that time period.

Re:Degree Mills (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123801)

Most of my students were unfit to be even in high school. But the University got Government money per student, thus no body gives a hoot about better education. Most got 5,6, 9 out of hundred, yet the chair person changed their F grade to 'A". The administration did know this but was enjoying tax payers paid income. US education is in shamble.

STOP (3, Funny)

fazey (2806709) | about 2 years ago | (#43123103)

You're saturating the market! Go pick something else!

No jobs and too many Visas (2)

bussdriver (620565) | about 2 years ago | (#43123215)

Apparently all the advertizing for Visas has high school students confused that there is a shortage of CS people. The side benefit is that having too many graduates will result in the same outcome if the Visa program can not continue to be abused.

Walmart used to hire people with bad credit (after performing credit checks on applicants) because those employees are the closest to indentured servants. THAT business ethic is not restricted to Walmart management. Indentured servants are the goal. CS graduates with huge debts doing IT support jobs a teenager can perform can fill the gap the Visas have not been filling...

Re:No jobs and too many Visas (1)

zedrdave (1978512) | about 2 years ago | (#43124039)

> Walmart used to hire people with bad credit (after performing credit checks on applicants) because those employees are the closest to indentured servants

[citation needed]

Not that I can't believe Walmart would do absolutely anything to help their bottom line: they do have plenty of well-documented horrendous employment practices. But: 1) this makes little sense (people with large debt are objectively less responsible and less likely to feel any sense of responsibility toward their employer, not to mention more likely to engage in unethical behaviours to repay their debt) 2) anything I could find online pointed at the exact opposite (that Walmart was unlikely to hire people with bad credit history).

So please source your claims or stick to actual facts. Unsupported rumours only do disservice to the worthy cause of exposing the sociopathic behaviours of corporations like Walmart.

Re:EVERYBODY DO CS (1)

helobugz (2849599) | about 2 years ago | (#43123545)

Maybe they will dilute the CS talent pool enough that recruiters will start recognizing where the real talent is -- dropouts =).

I went because Bill Gates is SOOO charismatic (1, Funny)

Richard Dick Head (803293) | about 2 years ago | (#43123131)

Pretty soon they'll be posting jaded comments from their laptop, laying in bed in their parents basement, just like me! Oh, if only times were better...

::Stares dreamily of poster of Bill Gates in his stunning 80's sweater, posing on his desk::

Re:I went because Bill Gates is SOOO charismatic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123517)

Pretty soon they'll be posting jaded comments from their laptop, laying in bed in their parents basement, just like me! Oh, if only times were better... ::Stares dreamily of poster of Bill Gates in his stunning 80's sweater, posing on his desk::

Oh God! (Yep, not logged in) I REALLY DID THAT!

Growing up back in the 80s, we were all anti-hippy - my (not speaking for others of my generation) goal anyway, was to sell out, make lots of money, have fast cars, goorrrrrrgeous women, and stick it to the man by crushing him into dust. My hero back then was Bill Gates because by the mid 80s, it was obvious that Microsoft (Gates) Rules and Apple (Jobs) Drools!

Gates was my hero, man! And yes, I had his photo from Fortune (IIRC) on the wall - I think he was in a open collared button down shirt, khakis, and those big metal framed face shield sized glasses.

Job me! (1)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | about 2 years ago | (#43123137)

Perhaps a degree in Medieval Russian Poetry isn't looking as 'employable' as it used to.

Re:Job me! (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about 2 years ago | (#43123205)

These days a degree in Medieval Russian Poetry is as employable as any other degree.

Re:Job me! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123353)

More so than most shitty comp-sci degrees.

In Medieval Russia... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123393)

Village dead brings out YOU!

Go America! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123193)

Thanks to all the foreign competition filling up our schools, we can finally say we're becoming competitive!

Hey China, look at all our new grads! Oh, wait...

No excuse now to outsource, except for the obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123209)

I recally CIOs pining about how they didnt have the skills in US, so now they have to come up with a different reason!

Re:No excuse now to outsource, except for the obvi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123375)

You're assuming that the people getting those degrees have the skills CIOs are looking for. Considering the number of interview candidates (yes, with CS degrees) who fail FizzBuzz and other equally simple tests, there's probably not much that's going to change except an increase in the unemployment rate for CS grads.

Re:No excuse now to outsource, except for the obvi (1)

aztracker1 (702135) | about 2 years ago | (#43124155)

True enough... no degree here.. self taught going on 17 years of professional dev... It is amazing how much a CS grad does not know... though the same goes for MS* certs. I think a lot of people just don't know how to work through real problems. For that matter.. dealing with supporting bad code... I spend about 1/3 of my time dealing with code I would just assume rip out, and replace.. sometimes I can refactor a little, sometimes more.. and sometimes you hold your nose and get the enhancement duck taped in place. Knowing how and when to do what.. that's what experience gives you.

Great News! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123239)

Hopefully they'll be smart and move to India so they can get a job in the U.S. on an H1B1.

Re: smarter.. (1)

helobugz (2849599) | about 2 years ago | (#43123565)

or be smarter and avoid drugs & the fuzz so they can qualify for a clearance. Talent not required, just an immaculate permanent record. Sad, but true.

"Computer Science" (4, Interesting)

degeneratemonkey (1405019) | about 2 years ago | (#43123241)

It seems that an increasing proportion of Computer Science resumes I receive are from recent graduates who don't know much at all about computer science. They've done a little Java or C++ or VB programming, they've explored such in-depth topics as linked lists and arrays, and they've heard of quicksort.

Anything from complexity analysis, language classification, (heaven forbid) Turing machines, to operating systems, memory management, distributed systems, or synchronization? Hell, hell no.

Re: "Computer Science" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123325)

I bet your farts smell great

Re:"Computer Science" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123717)

No shit. Just yesterday, a fortune-100 company that can't be named, hired me to reprogram their turing machine to comply with some "new" federal regulations. Air-quotes on "new" because their in-house "development" staff had 3 years to fix it but none of them have any experience with the turing machine that runs all the important business processes.

Re:"Computer Science" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124003)

Colleges teach student about Turing machines because Turing laid the foundation for modern computational theory. If you don't learn about those things, you're not a computer scientist, you merely went to a vocational school for programmers. Similarly you can be an electrician without understanding the true nature of electricity and the underlying laws of physics, but you shouldn't expect to be able to do the jobs an EE graduate does.

Re:"Computer Science" (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124023)

Our Turing machine wasn't Y2K compliant, but it's universal, so we just programmed it to simulate a Y2K-compliant machine.

(captcha: convert)

Re:"Computer Science" (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 2 years ago | (#43123733)

It seems that an increasing proportion of Computer Science resumes I receive are from recent graduates who don't know much at all about computer science. They've done a little Java or C++ or VB programming, they've explored such in-depth topics as linked lists and arrays, and they've heard of quicksort. Anything from complexity analysis, language classification, (heaven forbid) Turing machines, to operating systems, memory management, distributed systems, or synchronization? Hell, hell no.

You can't graduate from a Pac 12 conference CS program without having exposure to what you hoped to find in your resumes.

I know it is still true at WSU, UofW, Stanford, OSU, Cal, and UCLA/USC

Re:"Computer Science" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123765)

You can't graduate from a Pac 12 conference CS program without having exposure to what you hoped to find in your resumes.

I know it is still true at WSU, UofW, Stanford, OSU, Cal, and UCLA/USC

U of Mich, in the Midwest, as well.

Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (2, Insightful)

rsilvergun (571051) | about 2 years ago | (#43123249)

who in their right mind would go into CS? Or are these foreign students? I did hear that we've got a lot of them encouraged to come here because they pay a lot more than their local counterparts.

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123463)

Let's see, I love computers, I love programming, I love everything associated with how computers do what they do. I love solving problems using a computer, I love building information systems from scratch. I love databases and cryptography. What do you suggest I pick my major to be mr asshat? Are you saying I should pick English as my major? Or should I study what I like and what get's the recruiters at career fair jizzing when they see my resume? I know people who graduated years ago. A Finance major teaching in a charter school, an English major who works at a coffee shop and is a prostitute, and a Computer Engineer that works at an electronics recycler. Guess what I will do when I graduate? Code on a fuckin computer!

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123515)

Let's see, I love computers, I love programming, I love everything associated with how computers do what they do. I love solving problems using a computer, I love building information systems from scratch. I love databases and cryptography. What do you suggest I pick my major to be mr asshat? Are you saying I should pick English as my major? Or should I study what I like and what get's the recruiters at career fair jizzing when they see my resume? I know people who graduated years ago. A Finance major teaching in a charter school, an English major who works at a coffee shop and is a prostitute, and a Computer Engineer that works at an electronics recycler. Guess what I will do when I graduate? Code on a fuckin computer!

at home?

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (2)

helobugz (2849599) | about 2 years ago | (#43123585)

What do you suggest I pick my major to be mr asshat?

Mathematics, assclown.

Then just do it (1)

rsilvergun (571051) | about 2 years ago | (#43123613)

but why spend 4 years in school and walk out with a worthless piece of paper? At least get a business degree. A business degree lets you apply for any job out there. A CS degree gets you replaced by an H1B. And no, I don't suggest an English Major. Yes, there are worse majors for employment than CS, but you work damn hard for that CS degree...

Re:Then just do it (1)

Pro777 (90089) | about 2 years ago | (#43123995)

Reality begs to differ.

http://www.payscale.com/college-salary-report-2013/majors-that-pay-you-back

As a holder of a BS in computer science, if I need someone to move columns in Excel, I will do it myself.

Re:Then just do it (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124063)

I can't speak for you but my 4 years in university were anything but useless. I was forced to learn to think in different ways and approach problems from different perspectives. Also, that piece of paper opened doors, even if they were as simple as being able to check the "has CS degree" box on the employment application. Co-op/internship was very helpful as well; I got to work on a high profile project and rub elbows with some rather important people while doing interesting work.

Could I have gotten the same benefit from a bunch of reading and experimenting? Theoretically. Do I think I would have? I doubt it.

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123629)

Choose something else that interests you as your major. Then choose Computer Science as a double major, minor, or focus. You'll still be able to code if you want, but unlike your bazillion peers, you'll also be employable. This is what I'm doing.

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123697)

You have it backwards: the fact that companies can't find enough qualified Americans and that they have to look overseas to fill their positions means that going into CS is an *excellent* idea.

Re:Congress gunning for 300,000 plus H1Bs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124341)

Is the market in the US that bad?
I have a masters degree in computer science in Belgium, and it seems a lot better here. I regularly get recruiters on the phone asking me to come join another company.

CS is not IT / desktop / severs / networking (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 2 years ago | (#43123315)

CS is not IT / desktop / severs / networking / ect.

Re:CS is not IT / desktop / severs / networking (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 years ago | (#43123341)

true, but guess what type of jobs the graduates apply?

Re:CS is not IT / desktop / severs / networking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123771)

Yeah but if you graduated with 2.5 gpa inCS you picked the wrong major to start

Re:CS is not IT / desktop / severs / networking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123671)

Not every school seems to have an IT degree. My supervisor in the AF, who is a NE for a major company, suggested getting a CS degree and IT experience/certs (though those are worthless).

Get a EE degree instead (2, Interesting)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | about 2 years ago | (#43123423)

You just need a little bit more physics, able to deal with circuits, microcontroller and so on. Looks much better than CS at least on paper.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123489)

Except you won't be able to code if you do EE. Too many EE grads I've had to train that just don't get programming because they've only had to take 2 classes and didn't have to pull all nighters just to get a project done.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123535)

Except you won't be able to code if you do EE. Too many EE grads I've had to train that just don't get programming because they've only had to take 2 classes and didn't have to pull all nighters just to get a project done.

get a math degree. you can write your own ticket, and if you can get a math degree, you can be pretty sure
you will have the smarts to code if you want to.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

sourcerror (1718066) | about 2 years ago | (#43123621)

Except that HR doesn't have any idea what a math degree is good for.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

englishknnigits (1568303) | about 2 years ago | (#43123769)

Math degrees are great if you want to be a math teacher. If you don't want to be a math teacher, don't get a math degree.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

deander2 (26173) | about 2 years ago | (#43124105)

That's just silly. I've worked with many math majors holding interesting non-teaching jobs.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#43124183)

If your going into college and you haven't coded anything yet, give up on CS or EE. You can likely do both, but you will never be really good. You don't love it enough. You better be open to being a better coder though.

For EE I'd raise the bar some more. If you don't already know how to use basic bench equipment don't go into EE.

If you've never blown anything up, don't even bother going into engineering of any kind.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

RightwingNutjob (1302813) | about 2 years ago | (#43123649)

Right backatcha. Too many CS types I've worked with just don't get hardware because they've only taken freshman physics and have never had to stay up all night trying to debug a faulty bit just to get a project done. And they can't quite grasp that even an occasional segfault in a program that controls moving machinery is not acceptable.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

aztracker1 (702135) | about 2 years ago | (#43124177)

When you're dealing with moving hardware, any software development really needs t be approached as a engineering discipline. Most software development needs to be approached as more of a craft, however. I wish more people simply understood the difference. Instead manager types tend to expect you to PFM* a solution.

* Pure F*cking Magic

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

Osgeld (1900440) | about 2 years ago | (#43124361)

"Except you won't be able to code if you do EE."

most people that do CS cant either, whats your point?

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

tsotha (720379) | about 2 years ago | (#43124375)

I've found just the opposite. We hire mostly EE and physics grads in preference to CS. Computer science programs don't teach people to code, and when you suggest that they should the academics always come back with "We're a university, not a trade school!"

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#43123527)

I agree, but don't minimize the engineering core. 1 semester each from the major engineering disciplines. Statics, thermo, circuits for all engineers. It was joy IIRC.

Also Engineers need more core math then CS, to go with the physics.

If you flunk out of engineering you can always go back to CS. That's a very typical path.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123611)

Unless you go to a decent school where CS IS engineering. Including the same math and physics requirements. Then when you fail out of engineering, you end up in business school.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2, Interesting)

tyrione (134248) | about 2 years ago | (#43123761)

Unless you go to a decent school where CS IS engineering. Including the same math and physics requirements. Then when you fail out of engineering, you end up in business school.

CS is not FUCKING ENGINEERING. It never will be. It is called Computer Science for a reason. Most ME/EE graduates I knew had FORTRAN, C and C++ for Numerical Analysis, Finite Element Analysis, Computational Fluid Dynamics and more. Not a goddamn CS would understand a fucking think about Fracture Mechanics but an ME would boringly pick up a programming language just by reading the damn book. Want to learn about UNIX Networking, or threading just read some quality books on both the theory and application. Want to learn how to model Aerodynamics for a multi-body nonlinear dynamics system, spend 5 years building up to it. How come? It's far more complex and requires skills that you can't learn in a book. Engineering has many disciplines because people have many different aptitudes towards applied Physics, Chemistry and Biology. Learning a new hashing algorithm isn't an aptitude, but just exposure of how a programming language, compiler and software APIs are designed to best be utilized. They aren't physical immutable laws of programming.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about 2 years ago | (#43124191)

Calm down tyrione.

On some campuses CS is taught out of the Engineering school. Other options are Arts and Sciences (usually associated with the Math department) or the Business school.

Of those the worst by far are those that teach CS out of the business school.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124229)

Apples and oranges. You are comparing the basics in one discipline to advanced applications in another.

How would a CS model Aerodynamics for a multi-body nonlinear dynamics system? Pick up some books and let the processor do it for them.

How would an ME troubleshoot why the entire intranet has gone down? The same way that programmers do: call the IT guy. ;)

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

englishknnigits (1568303) | about 2 years ago | (#43123775)

This.

At my school CS majors actually take more math than most engineering majors.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123591)

Physics 2 is painful enough. Most CS hate it so much, nothing cool about it, just total boredom. And you want us to take more?

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 2 years ago | (#43123743)

You just need a little bit more physics, able to deal with circuits, microcontroller and so on. Looks much better than CS at least on paper.

A little more Physics? I'm sorry, but having both CS and a Mechanical Engineering, CS might as well be an Art Degree by comparison. I'll take an EE degree holder over a CS major every day of the week to hire.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (2)

englishknnigits (1568303) | about 2 years ago | (#43123753)

I only know one EE that is satisfied with being an EE. All of the others are trying to get CS jobs and wishing they actually had some CS training. The only EE knowledge I have heard of being widely useful is basic circuit analysis which you can get in just a few classes. Granted, there are going to be some jobs where in depth EE knowledge is actually useful but those jobs are few and far between. What you really want is a CPE degree where you become a competent programmer combined with a basic knowledge of circuits and hardware. EE's go too heavy on the physics, which 99% won't need, and too light on programming, which 99% will need.

Re:Get a EE degree instead (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123893)

Well, I was EE. Favorite was logic circuits and assembly language, and FPGA's. Making digital and analog circuits in lab was rewarding. That led to more and more circuit building, and eventually to higher level programming, and embedded work. And now applying logic to backend and frontend web work. Basically, if you're good, software and hardware are similar. A different medium. You're solving a problem with logic. Anyway, EE is a great, well rounded degree, leads to great opportunities, overlapping into CS. You're a real problem solver, with many tools, and useful experience.

We Need More H-1Bs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123433)

But wait! The corporations tell us there isn't enough local talent to fill tech jobs, and that we need more H-B1s! Guess they didn't get the memo.

attrition (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123437)

A significant amount of these students will be weeded out mainly due to the fact programming alone is not computer science, and the fact that Calc 1, 2, 3, prob stat, linear alebra, physics 1, physics 2, and physics 3 are not for the light hearted. I feel that many will opt to go either get a BA in some IT related course which is mainly business analyst focused with some programming and networking.

Re:attrition (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123451)

(good) universities and colleges have ways of balancing this out...its just the natural order of things.

epp?! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123465)

long term survival Addreeses wiil again. There are to have to decide walk up to a play mire of decay, market share. Red

Shazam! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123491)

I heard that two or three of those CS majors are native Americans.

comp eng cs (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43123653)

In my experience, after getting a comp sci degree, I had few job opportunities. After completing my computer engineering degree, i got a excellent job before my final exams had even started. I guess the comp sci helped, but engineering is where its at.

doesnt hurt that I got a applied math degree tacked onto the eng either...8 years for 3 degrees...and I have a job where I help people with phDs and masters. I would say go for breadth, not depth. It makes you more employable. I can design circuits, make websites, do financial analysis, electrical design/PLC programming and controls design and program in pretty much any language with little effort.

By far, google has been my greatest asset.

but i might be making all this up.

Go help the Wayland Project (1)

tyrione (134248) | about 2 years ago | (#43123675)

They seem to be a like a bunch of 5th graders learning to dribble with their non-dominant hand with their present inability to make caching efficient of stored states inside a max/min windowing environment. Hint: Talk to Apple. NeXT did it back in '89.

Secondary degrees? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124007)

I wonder if the majority these students responsible for this increase are enrolling in CS as their second degree? Obviously one degree by itself is rarely enough to get you through the door anywhere these days, but by having two degrees it just might be enough to get by HR. This is not only because you know how to do X (from your first degree), but now (with that CS knowledge) you'd supposedly have the skills to program things to do X on a computer.

I'm honestly thinking of going back to school and getting an associates in CS, because nobody in my chosen field will hire me with just a bachelor's and very little experience. (Right now I'm stuck doing some so-so near-minimum-wage job to just make ends meet. And it's hard to get much volunteering in for experience when the paying work already takes up too much time.)

No jobs = hide in academia for a while. (1)

GoodNewsJimDotCom (2244874) | about 2 years ago | (#43124065)

I graduated right after the dotcom bust, when everyone was looking for jobs and had lots of experience. Even with a degree from Carnegie Mellon, programming since I could press buttons, and my main hobby at home programming, I couldn't start my career. I thought of hiding in academia myself, but the major problem was I couldn't get student aid. Having student loans I can't ever pay off now is a pain as is.

Anyone want a Flash(AS3)/C/C++ programmer with over ten thousand hours coding? I'm a guy who's been told he works better than teams of 4 in 1/4 the time. I'll work for $15/hr, negotiable. I actually am on some personal projects at the moment(trying to start a business), but I can always shelf em and come back later.

Re:No jobs = hide in academia for a while. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124189)

Anyone want a Flash(AS3)/C/C++ programmer with over ten thousand hours coding? I'm a guy who's been told he works better than teams of 4 in 1/4 the time. I'll work for $15/hr, negotiable.

Learn JavaScript, jQuery, JSON, AJAX, PHP. No, I am not joking. I am probably 1/10th the programmer you are and I'm earning $25/hr.

Or, just pray to your god to deliver a fat salary into your lap.

Re:No jobs = hide in academia for a while. (2, Informative)

aztracker1 (702135) | about 2 years ago | (#43124217)

Just a couple suggestions... most people in IT aren't very religious... I don't mind (lean deist myself), but some might... you may want to do some work on your personal website, assuming your name matches the site... It doesn't need to be perfect.. just a little nicer (there are templates to work with like bootstrap, even platforms like wordpress)... If you have personal projects to show off, etc.. throw them up on github (assuming you have the rights).

On your personal site, have an html copy of your resume, as well as a link to the MS-Word version. Name off every technology you've touched, and then in your work history, re-state what you've touched. If you aren't touching hardware, or interested in game dev, I would suggest picking up a more dynamic environment to program in. Flash is all but dead, though AS3 and JS correlate really well, and NodeJS, MongoDB, Web-UI dev is growing a lot, JS skills can get you placed... .Net, or Java will net higher pay, but the time to build experience may well not be worth it.

I am not sure where you are located, but in the US, if you have more than 5 years of experience, and are any good, you should be able to find work for more than $30/hr, and if you are really good, you shouldn't be making less than $50/hr (More in some locations). The dot-com bust was a long time ago.. I was down and out for a year.. took a couple jobs at less than half what I made before, kept options open, and was willing to change jobs for opportunity and more money. Note: I'm in Phoenix, AZ... I know of lots of places hiring just the same. If you're in the sticks move to one of the top 20 largest cities (US), and you will find better paying, decent work.

Re:No jobs = hide in academia for a while. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#43124383)

have anything to show other than a text file preaching at us?

no? well thats why you have no career over a decade after the fact, put up or shut up

Somewhat lame report (5, Informative)

Animats (122034) | about 2 years ago | (#43124109)

The "Computing Research Association" is a lobbying group. It's not on K Street NW in DC like most lobbyists. It's on L street, one block over. It's a lobby for federal funding for college CS departments.

Here's the actual report. [cra.org] Two charts are upside down. The focus is on race and gender. There's little discussion of CS vs IT vs EE vs CE degrees, although there are some separate table columns. Employment statistics are provided only for PhD graduates.

The data seems to be self-reported by the institutions involved.

Mostly matching other degrees. (2)

NitWit005 (1717412) | about 2 years ago | (#43124147)

If you examine Figure 1 in the report, there was a downward slide from 2001-2007 and an increase from 2007-now. That mostly matches what is seen for all majors in Figure 2. The real story here seems to be the overall education trend, not CS specifically.

Three questions: (2)

tlambert (566799) | about 2 years ago | (#43124481)

Three questions:

(1) Has the graduation rate gone up correspondingly?

(2) How many actually complete their degree without running in "year stretching" by the University choosing not to offer required classes?

(3) How many are at prestigious Universities in the right programs, rather than at Flash Game Programmer/JavaScript diploma mills?

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