Becoming a programmer is at least a 3 years journey, working in a company of course. There are very bright students who create individual projects but at the end of the day it is and will always be the business needs first. From my practice, I know clever guys who outsmart me but couldn't bare working as a team or in a company for someone, doing tasks and stuff so they decide to study and go for a master or above and delay the actual work. Of course some chase a job in R and D but still, being a programmer and being a programmer for a living are two different things.
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