What do we mean when we talk about technology careers?
The technology (or information technology) field can be broken up into two different areas:
- the technology industry
- technology job functions
Many people will have technology jobs in organizations that are not in the technology industry. For instance, you might be a web developer working for a federal government agency. In that case, the job is a technology job, but the industry is government.
Alternatively, you may work for a technology firm in a technological role, such as software engineer, but you might have a business function. In the past couple of years, for instance, Oracle has hired many Georgetown graduates for sales roles.
If you are thinking about a career in technology, it is important for you to understand both the nature of the type of work you want to do (the job) and the environment you want to do it in (the type of company).
Skills needed to be successful
There are many ways to acquire coding skills other than majoring in computer science. You can take courses on Lynda.com you can take courses at Georgetown. There are free websites such as Code Academy or General Assembly's Dash tool, dedicated to teaching you how to code. So if coding is something that you want to learn, you may not need to major in computer science to do it. Employers who require people with coding skills might look first to computer science majors, but ultimately, they care that you have the skills they need. So if you can get those skills elsewhere and demonstrate your ability, you will have a chance at those types of jobs as well.
Writing and communication skills
If you want to work in web development, having design skills is very important. Not just graphic design skills or web design skills but user experience design and information architecture skills. Stanford design school’s guide to design thinking is a valuable tool to begin learning about design as an approach to problem solving. Being able to design content in a way that is meaningful and accessible for users is an incredibly valuable skill in the world of web design.
What is the career path?
The path to a career in technology can vary greatly depending on the employer and the type of work.
Many large technology companies--such as Google, Apple, and IBM--have established internship and co-op programs for both technical positions and business positions that can lead to full-time employment after graduation.
For many other employers, such as a sales position at Oracle, there is no single type of internship experience or major that will help you get a full-time job.
Ways to get experience in technology?
You don't have to be a computer science major to learn how to code. You can learn computer programming skills by taking a class at Georgetown, by joining the Georgetown club GU Women Coders, or by availing yourself of the free resources available to help people learn to code, such as Code Academy or Lynda.
- Computer Programmers
- Software Engineers
- Systems Analysts
- Database Administrators
- Information Security Analysts
- Network and Computer Systems Administrators
- Web Developers
- Product Quality Associate
The employers below hired Georgetown graduates into entry-level positions. This information comes from our 2012 and 2013 first destination surveys.
Lynda.com - Lynda, which you have access to courtesy of Georgetown library, offers courses on an incredibly wide variety of subjects, including programming languages.
Code Academy - Free courses in many computer programming language.
GU Women Coders - Georgetown club for students from all majors who are interested in learning to code.
Hoya Career Connection - Our jobs and internships database where you can log in and search for opportunities.
iTunesU - There are a variety of computer science courses available for free on Apple's education portal, including an iOS development course from Stanford University.