please help - programming school.

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by ratm247, May 5, 2010.

  1. ratm247 macrumors newbie

    Mar 14, 2009
    i am applying for funding to go to school, and learn programming. as part of the process i must find people in the industry (employed or employer) to answer a short set of questions *about the labour market. depending upon the eloquence of the responses it shouldnt take more than 5 or your earths minutes to complete.

    please reply if you can help, or if you know of a better place for me to look for help, thank you.
  2. lee1210 macrumors 68040


    Jan 10, 2005
    Dallas, TX
    Do you need some sort of proof of employment for those that respond? If not, just post the questions here. I'm sure you'll get plenty of responses in no time. Also, which planet are you applying to school on (or which planet is your native planet if you're applying on earth)? The specificity of earth minutes seems suspect.

  3. ptaylor9 macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2009
    Country specific, or will any Earth labour market do?
    Chuck the Qs on here, and I will help if I can,
  4. ratm247 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 14, 2009
    thank you so much. im looking for school on earth, but i had been trying to find help for a while now, and had no luck so i thought id throw in a little humor, haha. if the answers are more private than you would like to display on the forums you can email them to me at thank you again for your help.

    The Questions:


    Name / title of contact:

    1. Type of position:

    2. Main Duties:

    3. Are any of the following required for employment in this industry?
    -Criminal Record Check
    -Driver's Abstract
    -Access to Vehicle

    4. have you hired people in this occupation in the past two years?

    5. Do you see a need to hire for this occupation in the next two years?

    6. Do employees generally start out permanent, casual term, seasonal,
    or part time?

    7. Is high school necessary? What post-secondary, if any is necessary
    to gain employment in this occupation?

    8. Do you feel that the training (and the training institution) i am
    considering will qualify me for this occupation ?

    9. What is the salary range for this position? Starting, and maximum?

    10. What opportunities for advancement are there in this occupation?

    11. What personal qualities are important to being successful in this

    12. Do you have any additional information / comments you would like
    to include?
  5. lee1210 macrumors 68040


    Jan 10, 2005
    Dallas, TX
    NextGen Healthcare, Inpatient Solutions Division

    Lee McKeeman, Software Engineer

    Software Design/Engineering/Programming

    Design and implement features for inpatient EMR system and LIS system
    Provide support to existing customers, researching customer issues, fixing bugs, etc.
    Provide training/guidance/leadership to other engineers and software analysts

    I honestly don't know. I don't have a criminal record, i do have a driver's license and access to a vehicle, and I don't know what bondable means. I think that if someone had been convicted of knowingly violating HIPAA regulations and exposing patient healthcare information that would be an issue, but I don't know about other criminal records disqualifying candidates.

    I am not a hiring manager, but my company has hired people in the past two years in this capacity or similar capacities.

    Again, I am not a hiring manager, but I suspect that (depending on some financial mumbo jumbo) we will be hiring in this capacity in the next two years.

    Almost exclusively permanent. There are some casual/seasonal/part time needs very rarely, but they are often served by children of full-time employees on summer vacation, etc.

    High school is necessary, and a college(university to non USians) diploma or commiserate experience is also required at my company. In the broader market I'm sure one could become a software engineer without a college degree, but most listings i see require it.

    I don't mean to be snobby, but this is going to come off that way:
    I would prefer a university education in an unrelated subject area plus programming experience to a technical programming degree, which is the feel I got from that page. Certainly exceptional individuals might get such a degree or certificate, but based on credential alone I'd rather see a CS (or any other university degree plus experience) degree than an IT/Programming/etc. degree/certificate. I believe that community college and technical school focus more on practice and immediate employability in a lower capacity than concepts, how to learn and reason, and other things that I feel grooms one for more difficult problems, large-scale design work, etc. Certainly such a program is better than nothing, but if I was interviewing I would be more skeptical of an applicant with a 2-year "Associate's Degree" vs. an applicant with a 4-year university diploma. I can't tell the length of the IT program for the school you posted (other degrees say a length, it's blank for that one), but this seems like a ~2 year program. I don't know what such a degree would be called in canada, but that's generally considered an associate's degree in the US. I would not say you couldn't get a job with this, but you'd be at a disadvantage if other applicants had a 4-year credential.

    I started as a software analyst and moved up to software engineer. I would peg starting at mid-30K USD/year. I have no idea what the maximum is. I have never asked if there was a cap on my potential salary. I hope there is not. I don't know who the highest paid software engineer is, but i'd probably peg the max in my division at between 90K-100K USD/year, but that's a guess.

    I started as a software analyst, moved up to software support engineer (still a support role, but more senior-level in that group), then to software engineer. Since then I have taken on additional leadership responsibilities, etc. The highest technical position in my division is chief architect. There is only one of these positions available, so there's not much room to advance to this level. There had been a distinction of software engineer and senior software engineer in the past, but it seems to have faded into obscurity. No software engineer has been given a senior title in a number of years. In the past 3 software engineers have ascended to Software Development Manager, so that's a path that can be followed as well. One exceptional case was that a software engineer rose to director of development (this position no longer exists, but was above development manager), and eventually to COO. I don't expect this to be a path a lot of people can follow, but management is a path some software engineers have followed to varying degrees of success.

    Strong problem solving abilities
    Good interpersonal communication skills
    Strong reading comprehension
    Capacity for acquiring new skills quickly
    Keen Google-fu

    I don't recommend pursuing software programming as a profession without a spark of passion for it. It is not a good job if you don't like programming. Most people that are accountants don't account when they're not at work, most police officers don't investigate crimes when they're not on-duty, but a lot of software engineers/programmers will program in their free time because it's what they love to do. If you don't love it... i can't imagine doing it, it can be incredibly frustrating when you do love it.

    Good luck, whatever you choose to pursue. If you post on here about your homework, be sure to say it's homework so no one spoils the assignment for you.

  6. Bill McEnaney macrumors 6502

    Apr 29, 2010
    Lee's post tells us why I regret that I earned a two-year degree: lots of practice and too little theory. My first job was a dead-end job, partly because I had too little college education when the company hired me. I suggest that, if you're going to earn a two-year degree, then transfer to a four-year school. when you finish that degree. I'm going to return to graduate school mostly because I've long dreamed of earning a doctorate. But looking back, I 'm sorry I didn't earn one when I was young. Years ago, I was too eager to get my first job, landed it too soon, and found out that a technical school wanted to hire me to teach programming. Back then, the school couldn't hire me because state law requires a technical school's teachers to have at least a four-year degree. Teaching is the only kind of work I've ever adored.

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