Summer is right around the corner and for those about to graduate, it’s time to find a job.
For those graduating with computer science degrees, there’s plenty of opportunity.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, overall employment in computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow much faster than the average for all other occupations.
That said, while computer science graduates may have a wide variety of career options ahead of them, starting a career in IT can be daunting.
In this blog post, we offer some advice to recent computer science graduates who are embarking on their careers in IT.
How to Start a Career in IT
Build Your Skills
Even though you may have just graduated, it doesn’t mean that you have learned everything there is to know about computer science. The field is continuously changing, so it’s essential to keep your knowledge up to date.
Take additional courses, participate in workshops, read industry publications, get certified, and research new technologies.
Network and Get Involved
Networking is critical in any field, and IT is no exception.
Attend job fairs, meetups, and industry events to meet people in the field and learn more about the industry.
Join online forums, social media groups dedicated to your computer science field, and professional organizations such as IEEE and ACM.
Create a Portfolio
Build a portfolio of your projects to showcase your skills to potential employers.
Having a portfolio can make you stand out from other applicants and demonstrate your skills in a tangible way.
Apply for Internships
Applying for internships can provide valuable work experience and lead to a full-time job.
Even if the internship is unpaid or has a lower salary than what you would like, it can be a great opportunity to gain experience and make connections.
For those who are still a year or two away from graduating, start applying for those internships now.
Consider Contract Work
Unlike traditional employment, contract work involves working on a project or assignment basis for a set period of time. In IT, this can range from designing a website to developing a software application.
While contract work may not be on any recent computer science graduate’s radar, studies confirm that the number of these workers and their percentage of the tech workforce is on the rise – up to 42% of the current workforce!
The benefits of contract work include higher hourly wages, diversification of skills, professional growth opportunities, flexibility, and opportunity.
So, when looking for IT jobs during your IT career, always remember to check in with PSCI!