After having studied computer science, this is what I hope for in my future.
Optimism does not reign in the Spanish University. The working reality of young citizens does not invite us to see the future in a very positive way. But as in everything, there are always exceptions, and within the good outputs that STEM degrees (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) present, computer engineering occupies a very privileged place for the labor market.
On the occasion of InnoSoft Days, a conference organized by final year students of the Software Engineering degree at the University of Seville, we have spoken with five students to learn about what they hope to find in terms of their professional future when they finish their studiesWhat kind of work do they expect, if they see a specialization necessary and what projects they would like to undertake, when the time comes to take their own path.
Computer engineering is considered a profession with full employment, to the point that has a lack of students who can fit in with the work demand of companies. It is something that Miguel Toro, professor of the Department of Computer Languages and Systems at the University of Seville, mentioned in a round table on the profession: “there is labor intrusion, but it is because not enough software engineers. For this reason, the places that should be ours are being filled by graduates of other degrees “.
This situation means that, in general, optimism about a rapid insertion into the labor market prevails over final year students.
Although it is often proclaimed in the university environment that master’s degrees are required for advancement in a profession, Alicia manzano opines to the contrary. “In order to work, I don’t see a need to do a master’s degree, because people go out and they don’t ask for it.. I personally would like to know more, because I am evolving in my career, but not due to the demands of the labor market, which allows working without problems having only the degree “.
Regarding whether she feels ready, she affirms that she thinks it fits, and “Being a woman, from the experience in my close environment, does not seem to be a problem to find a job. I even believe that it can give me some advantage, although it should not be like that, since many companies seek to join the bandwagon of equality. They have to treat us as equals, not because I am a woman am I worth more than a partner if he is more qualified. “
Carmen Jara, for its part, shares reading about the situation, and calls for more women to be encouraged to study the degree: “There are many people who have already started to do the internships, and most companies tell you that with the possibility of hiring at the end. There are possibilities, in fact I do not understand that, with the job market as it is, that it is always hard to find something stable and well paid, there are no more women here. “
Unlike what her partner thinks, it is worthwhile for Carmen that there are companies that hire women, if only to sell that they are diverse companies, so that can lead to them positively. “When you have a homogeneous group, of men, for example, which is the most common case in the profession, It is difficult for them to see the worth of someone other than themselves, so if that is an element to hire women, it is worth it for me. At first it is difficult to fit in, but in the race we have seen that different points of view contribute a lot “.
Jorge Manuel Molina She shares the optimism of her colleagues, although she introduces a nuance that may not make any job as appealing as the expression full employment might suggest. “The opportunities are very good. Thanks to the great evolution of computing, the field in general has full employment, which for those who do not know it is less than 2% unemployment“.
However, he notes that “Good engineers are going to try to raffle the companies that we call meat companies, which at first treat you very well and flatter you, but then they whip and exploit you“.
All the group highlights that with so many subjects dedicated to management and learning to work as a team, the software engineer has what is demanded and is very different from a common programmer
Pablo Narvaez talks about the needs of the sector in the context, emphasizing that “more computer engineers are needed and not just people dedicated to something in computer science, since an engineer is not the same as a programmer.”
The self-taught character of those who do not study the race stands out, powered by the Internet, which “allows you to learn anything”, giving value, yes, to what “the engineer has his head furnished differently by the career, which generates the knowledge that the industry demands. Things like teamwork or management are learned in the career, and it is what is most valued in front of programmers “.
By last, Miguel Luque, believes that one of the keys why there is no unemployment is “because the degree prepares you with a good foundation and does not specialize you, something that companies value because you are moldable and thanks to the career you are able to keep up with the pace that you mark, which is not the case in many cases with programmers without qualifications. ” Miguel also highlights the fact that “Despite having full employment, it is not an attractive career for women, something I do not understand. Maybe it’s the nerdy stereotype and misconceptions. ”
In contrast to Alicia’s opinion, Miguel if you see the master’s degree necessary depending on your expectations: “money calls after finishing, but what people don’t think is that to get out of the programming field and direct projects, which is what many of us aspire to, we need certification. Fortunately, many master’s degrees they are designed to work at the same time. “
The dilemma between working for others or setting up something of your own
Unlike Bachelor’s degrees such as Server, Political Science and Sociology, Software Engineering students show attitudes more prone to entrepreneurship. Like they share that, it is also true that they do it with caution at this early post-college stage. The model that they have in mind nohistory is the one we are used to seeing in Silicon Valley and related to the birth of great technology, that of starting a company and being successful before finishing the degree. The situation and opportunities are seen very differently.
In this sense, Alicia considers that “it is cool to develop your own ideas, but I always believe that it is better to start with a company, because they will guide and train you“But he does not close the doors to anyone who feels ready:” if you see yourself more easily, you can take the step on your own, but in the company you can start the same, go up with greater learning and later go out and take your own path“.
Carmen is also prone to entrepreneurship, but at the moment, in the last year “maybe I see living as an entrepreneur very risky for the experience we have right now in the market“When we talk about the case of obtaining some financing with which to build a project, he also sees it difficult:” Even with financing, it is not planned, at the moment I am scared. I would not get involved, because I do not know the market situation in depth. It’s an element of risk, and it’s very out of control. “
Finishing the degree they see themselves with an academic base, but without the necessary experience and knowledge of the market to set up a company
Jorge Manuel also wants to undertake, but before he prefers “gain experience and contacts, and when you have the base, create your own company. At the moment I have a good basis to start anywhere, but not to do everything upside down. “In line with what I said before,”I would not go to any company to be exploited, although depending on the situation, something may be inevitable“.
Miguel wants something of his own, but also in the long term. “Soon it will be offered a training grant with Movistar, which I am going to try to opt for. Since I don’t really know what I want to do, if something comes out of that, I already have a path to follow and later create a project. “
Projects in which to leave your mark
Regardless of having more or less entrepreneurial vocation, both Alicia, Carmen, Jorge Manuel, Pablo and Miguel have their own ideas that they can develop at some point, if the thing goes well. It is the result of having studied a degree that, unlike others, exposes you in a practical way to many situations similar to those that you will face in the market. And above all, proposes you to create.
Alicia and Carmen jointly participated in a Bitnami contest held at the University during the Innosoft Days, and their team’s project proposal was the winner. In addition to this project, along with two other members of the contest team, called “Comrades”, they have an additional one. Hopefully it will be able to develop this summer as it requires less funding and time. “It will not be business oriented, and the idea is build an aid tool for certain NGOs“.
Alicia, outside the group, has also thought of other things to work on: “I would like to specialize in cybersecurity. It seems to me an interesting subject although quite complicated. I would also like to work abroad for a few years and then go back to Spain, where I would work in a company and have my own projects “.
Jorge also has an idea that he exhibited in the Bitnami contest. “It did not win, and everything can be improved, but I think it has potential. Tomorrow I want to ride own freelance management company, although I do not want to give exact details (laughs) “.
Pablo departs from the typical image of the occupation that a computer scientist hopes to occupy, and confesses that “lately he has been turning to computer science teaching. I would like to evolve this topic and manage to bring computing to the ESO or Baccalaureate classrooms and make it more visible. Not so much by giving classes, but by introducing computer science so that people are more informed about what a device or a computer can do, because not even companies know it sometimes “.
Miguel would like “finish with some mobile, with which I have already done things, but I do not quite know exactly what. It is the problem that I see that the race is so wide and I like so many things. As I have told you, I want to do something of my own in the future, but sometimes you need to be shown a little the way to discover what is yours “