Recently, someone shared a very valuable answer when I expressed irritation with some unwanted advice:
Their advice is worth what you paid for it.
Which is nothing.
These comments come in regards to me choosing to pursue a bachelor’s in software engineering (or development?) versus one in computer science. You don’t need to have read my blog since the beginning to know of my odd enjoyment of making lists. However, I want to clarify I don’t think these reasons are bad. They just don’t apply to my personal goals.
“Computer science is more versatile and recognized.”
Computer science is considered the “gold standard”, and is more generalized than software engineering or development. Thus, it’s a degree that can be applied to variety of careers. Artificial intelligence, robotics, computer engineering, computer scientist (duh), and so on.
The problem? I’m not interested in any of the above. I want to code websites and applications for a living. Yes, that’s really it, and no, not games either. I don’t think I need advanced math to achieve that.
“No one knows what a bachelor’s in software engineering is.”
This might apply to tiny companies, but large companies often have “related field” in the listing. I would imagine this would only be a problem at FAANG (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Google), and those are not my goal anyway. Speaking of that…
“FAANG only recognizes computer science degrees.”
Since I’m not aiming for FAANG, I’m uninterested in their requirements.
“The field of software engineering is on its way out.”
Since the release of ChatGPT, there has been social media spread panic about programmers quickly becoming obsolete. This kind of panic seemingly happens every decade or so. I can’t say I’m worried.
“You can take the classes you want as electives.”
You’ve got to love when people who aren’t financing your education try to tell you the best way to go about it. Putting aside I have no desire to spend more time in school than necessary, why would I push the classes I have genuine interest in to the side? Forcing myself through core classes would only heighten the chances I would drop out entirely because I’d tire of forcing myself through to get to what I want. I already have one uninteresting commitment (my job), but that gives me pay and benefits. I’d rather not drag myself through more.
And more important than any of the above reasons, as the title states, I didn’t ask for advice in the first place. A less versatile degree I’m likely to finish is better than a “gold standard” one I have a high chance of dropping. To end this post on a positive note, I’ll list about the classes I’m most excited for:
Share your thoughts!