C# How To Become A Developer

C# How To Become A Developer

By Jo Downend
17 November 2014

Here at Software Europe we take great pride in engaging with local students to help them as they take their next steps in life. A couple of weeks ago, two of our colleagues went into two local schools to talk to the students about the resources available to them when looking for a career, important personal attributes as well as participating in some mock interviews.

We recently received a message from a student who we engaged with two years ago as he started at sixth form. He has now completed his studies and decided that his future lies in computer science and has applied to University. Our CTO took it upon himself to personally respond to him, so for any budding developers we’ve shared his response for you to read.

First thing is you’ve picked the right subject. Although not essential, a computer science degree will give you the fundamentals. If you know the area of software engineering you want to be in you could look at degrees a bit more specialised. Software engineering is a big subject and covers development, systems analysis, quality assurance, design etc. A-level maths is often asked for by employers so if you’re doing that at the moment it’s not going to hurt.

Alongside studying for a degree, it will certainly be of benefit if you can get some experience. If I’m looking to employ a software developer, a degree will get you an interview but software engineering experience is equally as important. Employers will often want 1 – 5 years’ experience depending on the responsibilities of the role. If you have a degree and experience to back it up you’re on the right track. If you want to be a developer there are free tools available and the web is full of tutorials so get ahead of your class mates and learn the area you want to be working in. I was a self-taught developer long before I did my degree and so are many of my colleagues.

A lot of students don’t try to get ahead of their colleagues so if you can, do so. In the summer try and get a job with a software house. You can put it on your CV and employers will like it. It may seem an obvious thing to do but a lot of people don’t do it. We’ve had a couple of students approach us from the University for summer work and that actually isn’t the norm. One of those that did actually worked part time with us in his final year and I gave him a job at the end of it. Employers like enthusiasm and commitment.

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