Computers are necessary elements of work and life in the 21st century. Whether you’re currently a college student or considering attending a university, chances are you grew up using computers to access email, complete assignments or connect with friends through social media. Although computers may seem like a more recent invention, this technology’s roots reach far back to the 1800s
with preliminary punch card machines and steam-powered calculators.
Starting as a discipline in the 1950s and 60s, the computer science field has evolved and grown to encompass various domains. Software engineering, database management and web design are examples of potentially high-paying computer science roles. As nearly every business uses digital technology, this career area has never been more crucial.
1. What Are the Benefits of Pursuing a Computer Science Career?
Although computer science isn’t necessarily a new profession, the benefits of pursuing this career trajectory are numerous and growing. For one, salaries in computer science are often more lucrative than other professions. Computer science college majors earn 40% more than the average college graduate.
Secondly, contrary to some common perceptions, computer science is a creative field. Beyond programming, computer science professionals develop innovative solutions to improve technologies. Whether developing a new payroll platform for a company or a software to perform specific operations, successful computer science professionals are required to be adaptive and innovative when confronting novel challenges.
Perhaps the most important factor is that there are numerous computer science jobs to consider. According to some figures, computer science jobs are the number 1 source of new wages in the US, exist in every state and industry, and are projected to grow twice as quickly as other positions.
2. What is Required to Enter the Computer Science Field?
Computer science is a high-skill field that requires several education credentials. Computer science students are expected to excel in courses of statistics, computing concepts and mathematics. Computer science majors are well-suited to pursue master’s or doctorate programs, and are immediately prepared to work in a variety of industries.
Those engaged in a computer science program gain experience with many aspects of computer science, such as theory and application. Courses discuss algorithms, programming languages and operating systems. Computer science majors may learn skills they can apply to subject areas like computational finance, robotics and network security. Computer science students are encouraged to pursue research opportunities at an undergraduate level.
As computer science can be a challenging field that is constantly changing, logical thinkers who enjoy problem-solving would find this career trajectory fulfilling. If you decide to pursue a computer science major, compelling subjects like cybersecurity and virtual reality await. Careers in this field exist in sectors from food and beverage to healthcare technology.
3. Are Computer Science Jobs In Demand?
The computer science field continues to grow as more and more businesses rely on digital technologies. Computer science jobs demand remains strong. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects computer science jobs would grow 15% from 2019 to 2029. This field offers a variety of positions for interested applicants.
According to one projection, the technology, media and telecommunications sectors are likely to be short 4.3 million workers by 2030. Although this figure may seem dire, this is actually great news for those studying computer science, as a skills shortage can result in a more promising job market upon graduation. Given the reliance of every business sector on technology, the increase in computer science job demand is projected to continue growing.
4. What Salary Range Do Computer Science Professionals Earn?
As previously mentioned, computer science professionals continue to remain in high demand. Salaries levels can vary depending on positions depending on the company. According to some figures, the average national salary is around $70k annually.
It’s important to note this average varies depending on the state. For instance, Washington, Maryland and Nebraska boast the highest averages for computer science salaries in the nation. Although this may encourage some to relocate for higher salary opportunities, it’s vital to consider varying costs of living from state to state.
5. What are Some Common Computer Science Positions?
As with any concentration, it’s crucial to research the varying career paths possible with a degree in computer science. Several computer science positions exist and new roles are consistently created as technology advances. Some roles include:
- Software Developers – These highly-skilled developers are responsible for creating functioning programs to perform various tasks. Software developers are typically well-versed in crafting computer and mobile device applications. Beyond constructing programs, software developers also implement testing and maintenance.
- Database Administrators – The main function of these positions is to assess data needs of users and organizations. They are responsible for maintaining relevant databases and developing data solutions to ensure the proper storage and retrieval of important information.
- Computer Systems Analysts – These roles entail analyzing company systems and advising hardware and software suggestions to improve efficiency. Computer systems analysts generally possess advanced interpersonal communication skills, as they are required to interface with various stakeholders to ensure recommendations align with team aspirations. It’s also best if these professionals have a passion for remaining updated on cutting-edge technology, as innovative challenges require contemporary solutions.
- Information Security Analysts – These security specialists identify data security faults and create systems to protect information networks. These positions entail installing effective security software, recommending cybersecurity best practices and
- Web Developers – These positions entail meticulous programming and communication skills. Web developers construct technical structures for online pages and networks. They work side by side with designers to ensure desired frameworks come to fruition and are accessible by a wide array of stakeholders.
- IT Project Managers - These are higher level roles entail organizing and coordinating computer science professionals to complete multi-step projects. IT project managers also analyze existing company challenges and implement innovative solutions. They must be well-versed in computer science fundamentals and possess strong communication abilities to effectively delegate crucial roles to teams with specific talents.
No matter the position you are considering, it’s best to research these career trajectories while deciding the appropriate courses to take while in school. These roles can draw competitive applicants, so it’s crucial to get a head start on your dream job. That being said, make sure to get lots of social time in with peers, as various jobs require exceptional interpersonal skills.
6. Will Computer Science Professionals Continue to be In-Demand?
With technology rapidly advancing, and reliance on digital formats increasing, there’s no doubt computer science professionals will continue to be sought after across all industries. Whether a company requires data management, software development, website creation or project supervision, they will most likely seek candidates with robust computer science backgrounds.
It’s important to note a digital skills gap has challenged organizations for years. The rigorous education standards and experience levels required of computer science experts have resulted in millions of vacant roles. On the plus side, this means computer science majors will enter a wider job market after graduation.
This trend seems to continue. 67% of all new science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) jobs are in computing.
Studying Computer Science Can Lead You to a Fulfilling Career
Computer science is doubtlessly a lucrative career field to pursue. Salaries in computer science tend to be higher than in other areas. This field demands an exciting blend of creative problem-solving and fundamental skillsets. If you enjoy applying practical mathematics and crave creativity, computer science may be the career for you. A life in computer science brings lucrative salary potential and opportunities to craft innovative solutions to contemporary challenges.