Maybe you’ve always liked solving problems or deciphering codes. Maybe you have a gift for learning new languages, or maybe you were so intrigued by your computer that you tore the cover off and started tinkering with the inner workings. If that’s the case, computer science could be an ideal career choice for you.
Computer science graduates must be able to think analytically in order to design systems and programs, but must also be detail-oriented enough to solve problems. They must be able to communicate well with non-technical people to assess their needs and convey technical information in plain language.
Creativity is essential for computer science graduates hoping to deliver the latest application or technology gadget. Given the rapid pace of technological change, computer science graduates must have a thirst for learning to keep up with the latest developments.
Computer science graduates must also be curious about the world around them, as programs and systems apply to every possible area of life and business.
Software developers create software programs that allow users to perform specific tasks on a variety of devices, such as computers or mobile devices. They are responsible for the overall development, testing, and maintenance of software.
Software developers must have the technical creativity to solve problems in a unique way. They must be proficient in the computer languages used to write program code.
Communication skills are essential to obtain the necessary information and understanding from end-users about how the software works.
Database administrators analyze and assess user data needs. They develop and improve the data resources used to store and retrieve critical information.
They require the problem-solving skills of a computer science major to correct database malfunctions and modify systems to meet changing user needs.
Computer Hardware Engineer
Hardware engineers are responsible for the design, development, and testing of computer components such as printed circuit boards, routers, and memory devices.
Hardware engineers require a combination of creativity and technical expertise. They must be passionate learners who stay abreast of emerging trends in the field to create hardware that can accommodate the latest programs and applications.
Hardware engineers must have the perseverance to perform comprehensive system tests, over and over again, to ensure that the hardware is working as it should.
Computer Systems Analyst
Computer systems analysts evaluate an organization’s computer systems and recommend changes to hardware and software to improve business efficiency.
Because the work requires regular communication with managers and employees, computer systems analysts must have strong interpersonal skills. Systems analysts must be able to convince staff and management to adopt technology solutions that meet the needs of the organization.
In addition, systems analysts need a curiosity and a thirst for continuous learning to keep up with technology trends and seek out leading-edge systems.
Systems analysts also need business skills to identify what is best for the entire organization. Similar job titles are business analyst or enterprise systems analyst.
Computer Network Architect
Computer network architects design, implement and maintain network and data communication systems, including local area networks, wide area networks, extranets and intranets. They assess the data sharing and communication needs of organizations.
Computer network architects also evaluate commercially available products and services. Computer network architects test systems prior to implementation and troubleshoot problems as they arise after installation.
Computer network architects must have the analytical skills necessary to evaluate computer networks.
Web developers assess users’ needs for information-based resources. They create the technical structure of Web sites and ensure that Web pages are accessible and easily downloadable through a variety of browsers and interfaces.
Web developers structure sites to maximize the number of page views and visitors through search engine optimization. They must have the communication skills and creativity to ensure that the website meets the needs of its users.