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More on the future of Computer Science Careers – outlook still promising

Stanford Computer Forum reports on Rice University’s Professor Moshe Vardi’s study on the global migration of software jobs.

“IT is still a good career,” Vardi said. “We have nothing to fear but the fear of competition itself.”

Previous speculative data created the belief that jobs would not be waiting for computer science graduates, he said. But the picture is bright upon closer look at the increase in salaries and job openings.

While trends do indicate rapid outsourcing of programming positions, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that United States’ companies are creating new domestic IT jobs at a faster rate, as requirement for computer skills increase in new fields such as construction, and healthcare.

Some of the emotional challenges people faced during the Industrial Revolution are similar to what we are experiencing today, Vardi said. We are undergoing a period of change, and it is best to accept it, he said. “Offshoring is like the winter. You don’t ask if it is good or bad—you ask what do you do about it. The answer is you dress warmly.”

Indeed we must inovate to remain competitive. In my previous post on this topic, I’ve asked: “So what kind of a competitive advantage are we left with?”. My own answer was: “passion and love for programming”. Vardi adds to the point:

To ensure job security, students must learn business, communication and interpersonal skills. The personal touch will become as important as technological expertise.

Excellent points to keep in mind. It’s always a good idea to pick up some elective courses at school, and have a wider portfolio of knowledge. So far I’ve taken Economics, Phychology, Philosophy and Law at the University of Waterloo. If anything, there’s a higher chance to find some common interest with a potential employer during interviews, and distinguish yourself from all the other Engineers and Computer Science students applying for the same jobs.
– Tony

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  1. Posted by wtd | December 7, 2006, 3:18 am

    The single best skill a person can learn, with regards to job opportunities, is how not to seem like an idiot at a cocktail party.

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