So you like tech? Do you enjoy spending time with your computer? Have you started learning how to code or even developed something? Are you curious about how things work? Then you would love a Computer Science degree.
—Me to myself choosing my degree a couple of years ago.
As a newbie developer and Computer Science and Business Administration student I was most of the time frustrated by learning things I did not care much about, dealing with arrogant and discouraging teachers or building mostly useless things for class projects and/or school assignments. During my third year I couldn't take it anymore and started looking for things I was interested in and would give a little excitement to my boring CS knowledge. In other words, I didn't want to end up hating what I once enjoyed and you shouldn't either. It wasn't easy but it was worth it and I wish I could have started even earlier. Let's be honest, there's going to be people discouraging you whatever you're doing, so this is not the exception. Ignore them.
These were the things that came to my mind:
- Build something useful and interesting
- Prove myself as a developer
- Learn a new programming language
- Learn a new/improve spoken language
- Research something regarding CS that I had no idea about
- Start a blog (not necessarily a devblog)
- Excercise more
- Still get my degree (I'm not encouraging anyone to drop out!)
As you may have figured out, these were a lot of things and time was not abundant. I had two choices: leave some things out or combine them. I didn't want to leave anything behind so I started building something useful using a new programming language in a field I had no idea about. I proved myself taking part in two programming challenges and started a blog (in Spanish) to talk about the experience and explain how I solved them. I decided to improve my English and reached level C1.
Obviously, this took a decent amount of my time in less than 10 months and my grades dropped a bit and I stopped going to the gym. Anyways, that changed quickly and was nothing serious, but it's good to know that this may happen and you shouldn't be ashamed.
The most important thing about all of this is that I learned a lot. I learned things by myself and I learned to learn by myself. I wouldn't even consider myself a real developer if I hadn't tried doing any of this, not even with my degree.
Should things change? Maybe, maybe not. Of course I'd like to see a couple of changes in Computer Science and Software Engineering degrees, but that belongs in another post. However, if you ask me, the first ball can be always on our court and avoiding frustration can start with you.