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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:04 PM   #1
aznboi91
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Graduated and confused...

So I'm 21 now...This may or may not sound crazy but I graduated about 2 months ago with a BS in Computer Science. I have looked for jobs but they just don't seem to fit my description of what I am capable of doing or want to do...Yes I know I have low self esteem. Yes I am picky. But I've heard so many people say that you should do what you love...Do things that make you happy. But I just cannot seem to find that spirit or interest. I don't know what my dream job is I guess...

I guess I just want to work on projects that have large impact. That can be used by many people instantly. Is this crazy? Am I stupid or insane for thinking this way? I just feel that I've been wasting so much time in college.

All this time I've been prototyping a business by myself, but I just feel that there has been people wondering why I don't have a job. I've been reading up on how to make my own startup.... Should I really get a job before I continue to prototype?

I'm honestly lost. I don't know what to do with the rest of my life. Have you guys experienced anything like this before?

Comments and advice are welcomed and appreciated.

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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:23 PM   #2
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This is why today's generation is the way it is.

Get a job, until you find the perfect one to apply to.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:39 PM   #3
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Are you flexible? Silicon Valley, CA is the epicenter for CompSci. No rush, do what you love.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 10:42 PM   #4
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A large number of "good first jobs" are obtained not by what you know, but who you know. Take a job that will allow you to network with like minded people who share your interests & can observe your work & work ethic.. A position you like more will open up sooner or later somewhere & you will need someone to help get your resume pulled out of the huge stack submitted for that better position.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 11:27 PM   #5
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Are you flexible? Silicon Valley, CA is the epicenter for CompSci.
Yeah, by all means move out here with no job and no money. It's like super cheap and everything.
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Old Feb 13, 2013, 11:56 PM   #6
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The rails are taken off after you graduate, if you want to make a startup and have the cash to do it (or a parents house to live in) then do it. You can always look for opportunities after those ideas become exhausted or you just get tired of doing them.

Its very unlikely that you will get a job you want to do with no experience.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 12:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aznboi91 View Post
I guess I just want to work on projects that have large impact. That can be used by many people instantly. Is this crazy? Am I stupid or insane for thinking this way? I just feel that I've been wasting so much time in college.
That is a great goal and I hope you achieve it one day. However, you need to realize that you have to start somewhere and that is usually towards the bottom. There is a chance a "dream job" will come along any day now and you can instantly begin to impact a lot of people's lives. Unfortunately, the reality is that you will probably have to work hard for a while at a job, or jobs, that just pay the bills and give you experience, references, etc. on your resume.

At the very least take a job and use your salary to help you finance your own ventures? Lastly, can you afford to not have a steady paycheck while you try to get your own business off the ground?
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 11:25 AM   #8
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Yeah, by all means move out here with no job and no money. It's like super cheap and everything.
Austin is poor man's Silicon Valley. Lots of CS opportunities here.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 11:39 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by aznboi91 View Post
I don't know what my dream job is I guess...

I'm honestly lost. I don't know what to do with the rest of my life. Have you guys experienced anything like this before?
Let's get a few things out of the way. You don't know what your dream "real world" job is yet. You totally have strong interests in things and you may think you know your strengths (though likely you don't), but until you are in a working world job with co-workers and such it is very hard to know what type of job will really suit you. Don't think you should have this question (What is my dream job?) answered yet. It will take a few years, and this is the beginning of your career. I know it feels uncomfortable not knowing which road to take, but recognize that you know nothing (about the real world) and go out and explore it.

In this case I say just try to land a decent paying job where you can start your career learning. So much in college doesn't get you prepared for dealing with teams and co-workers and clients and you need to start that learning phase. It is silly that you should "do what you love" when you probably don't know what that is, on top of that the idea that the first job you'll get is the ONLY job you'll ever have is ridiculous. You will have opportunities along the way and as you get older in your career you'll feel more comfortable with making decisions.

Who says you have low-self esteem? Who says you're picky? Is it you? Don't be your own worst enemy. Trust yourself to succeed in whatever scenario you decide for yourself. The idea of creating your own start-up sounds exciting but that's a lot of work and responsibility as well as you don't have any experience doing that.

It is super important to work with people who DO have experience so you can see how they do it. Ask them questions, make silly mistakes and learn from it, clock out at the end of the day and leave the office behind (I'm not sure you can do that with your own startup). Like I said, go out there get a decent job (it might not necessarily be something you think you "love" but are competent at) and start learning from veterans in your field. They've been in the trenches and most likely if you're driven they will encourage you to succeed.

What languages/skills are your strengths?
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 11:44 AM   #10
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You totally have strong interests in things and you know your strengths, but until you are in a working world job with co-workers and such it is very hard to know what type of job will really suit you.
In my experience, most recent grads have no real clue what their strengths really are.

As you imply this really only becomes apparent when working with others to complete a goal, unless of course they are a self-funded individual developer.

B
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 11:50 AM   #11
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In my experience, most recent grads have no real clue what their strengths really are.

As you imply this really only becomes apparent when working with others to complete a goal, unless of course they are a self-funded individual developer.

B
I hear ya, I actually am editing my post a bit (it's amazing how lengthy a reply can become!).

And I agree, he most likely doesn't know what his strengths are.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 12:16 PM   #12
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Having a degree doesn't mean you make millions of dollars over night. This is part of the brainwashing of college. Just because you have a degree doesn't mean you won't work retail ever again.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 12:48 PM   #13
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Dude, you're 21 you barely know who you are let alone your calling..Grow up get a job and learn and explore from there
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 12:59 PM   #14
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In my experience, most recent grads have no real clue what their strengths really are.
Absolutely agree.

Especially with technical degrees (CS, EE, etc), graduating from college essentially means that now you've got the foundation to start learning the real job.

Take a job somewhere, even if just for a few months, just to get exposed to some real-world experience. Soak up as much wisdom/experience from coworkers as you can.

You'll be surprised by how much you learn just in the first few months of "real" work. Even if what you learn is that you'd rather not work for that particular employer, you'll still gain some experience and insight, for if you do decide to do things on your own.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 01:01 PM   #15
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Are you flexible? Silicon Valley, CA is the epicenter for CompSci. No rush, do what you love.

Such a misguided statement. CS jobs can be had anywhere. It's not wise to pick up and move out to CA, especially without a job offer from a company.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 03:00 PM   #16
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Your university should have helped you look for internships/jobs or at least guided you into having an idea of what job you should be looking for. Are you sure there aren't some resources there you can use?
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 02:01 PM   #17
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Hit up your college counselor that's what they are there for.

Also find the top 5 companies you want to work for and harass the **** out of them to give you a job.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 02:42 PM   #18
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Like others have already said, experience is the best thing you can get right now. You can't be too picky about what comes your way right now, get your foot in the door first.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 04:13 PM   #19
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Use your degree to get a job to pay the bills. It is much easier to find a better job when you have a good job. College pumps you full of idealism but figure out how to provide for yourself before you set out to change the world.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 05:20 PM   #20
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I'm 43 and still have doubts. Its part of life. Do what so many have already posted. Get a job. See if you like it. Change jobs if you must. You may find your way or you may GASP! never really like what you do for a living but that's why they call it work. Some people just work for a living, never love it but are grateful to pay the bills. If you can't find happiness in what you do for money, find it in your hobbies, friends and family.
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Old Feb 22, 2013, 12:34 AM   #21
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OP should read Lifehacker's stories of unemployment. Scary and depressing. Should light a fire under your butt to quickly get a job and climb.
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Old Feb 22, 2013, 11:37 AM   #22
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Easiest option would be to get into a large organization/company at an entry level. It's easier said than done since you pretty much have to know someone in the company in order to get your foot in the door. Assuming you're able to pull this off then a larger organization will have lots of opportunities to find the better position for you. From there, you move on as needed.

Since you're unable to land that perfect job right off the bat, try applying to smaller businesses and earn some experience. After a year or two, if that's not the right place for you, move on to somewhere else and rinse/repeat until you find something that's more to your liking.
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Old Feb 22, 2013, 01:04 PM   #23
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Crappy advise!

Woa, "do what you love" has got to be the WORST carreer advise I've ever heard.

Not only will it put an enourmous pressure on you, because most jobs are - let's face it - a way to earn money, and not something you would ever prefer doing it you were allowed to choose between that and free time. But what's even worse: Any job on the planet will at some point or another contain duties that you are going to HATE. So if you pick a job doing the thing that "makes you happy", chances are that you will end up hating it because of the annoying duties. And then you have a job you hate PLUS you've just lost one of the free time activities that you could otherwise have used to give your life some meaning.

A much, much better advise: Do something that you know you will be good at! Having a job knowing that you are doing it better than most people would in your place is a HUGE satisfaction. No matter what it is. And once in a while you will have people appreciating your work, which gives this wonderful feeling that you actually deserve the salary you are getting. In the end, you might end up loving (or at least liking) your job simply because of that.

Good luck with your carreer!

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Old Feb 22, 2013, 01:58 PM   #24
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Yes, absolutely get a job.

Yes, you should get a job. However, you shouldn’t just take any job – it should be a job that you can be proud of on your resume. It’s always easier to find a job if you already have one. Additionally, every month you are not employed is a potentially bad sign to any future employer. At the very least, you will have to have a very good reason for not having seeked/landed a job, and unfortunately, that entrepreneurial excuse is used way too often.

With that said, you might consider a short stint in it/software consulting. You’ll get exposure to many fortune 500 companies (technology and otherwise) while using your computer science skills and learning the ins and outs of business which is huge if you plan on advancing past a strict software architect role(think director positions). Better yet, if you don’t fall in love with consulting, you’ll have ample time to forge relationships with the hiring powers that be in the companies you consult with. If on the off-chance you actually enjoy consulting, the salary top-out will be double or more that of a se/sde/sdet/tpm/etc.

I have a BS in Math and CS, and a MS in CS. I’ve worked roles in both industry and consulting in the past 3-4 years since I first graduated from my undergrad and really enjoy consulting. While I’m not building the next new technology at amazon or google, I am tackling some very hard problems that large companies are challenged with. I enjoy it quite a bit, but not everyone does.

PM me if you have any questions.

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Old Feb 22, 2013, 06:30 PM   #25
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OP did you work at all during post-secondary? Personally, I have found that people who just blazed through school are the most lost when they are finally out of it. Working jobs you don't think are for you, that you aren't 'good' at, that have people you wouldn't normally associate with or that seem really insignificant are all good learning opportunities and teach you a lot about who you are, what you ARE good at and and what you can do to make a difference in people/the world.
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