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-   -   Is starting a computer science program at the age of 35 a bad/good idea? (http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/general-10/is-starting-a-computer-science-program-at-the-age-of-35-a-bad-good-idea-926566/)

Ryan_leo 01-30-2012 01:52 PM

Is starting a computer science program at the age of 35 a bad/good idea?
 
Obviously, this is not a linux question per se, but I wanted to see if it is a *wise* idea to enroll in a computer science degree program at the ripe age of 35.

All thoughts are welcome.

hilyard 01-30-2012 02:08 PM

I took CS101 at an age older than that, so why not? Ask: would a Tech school get you in the work foce sooner?
We never atop learning unless we choose to do so.

fnguy4545 01-30-2012 02:11 PM

I'd say give it a whirl by learning free first... there's not a lot of value (IMHO) to learning Computer Science through a degree program VS what you can learn for free or relatively much less expensive. Do you have any idea on what you're interested in studying? Programming, Systems administration, Databases,,,,something else?

Ryan_leo 01-30-2012 02:18 PM

Thanks for the replies -

Definitely not interested in programming. More interested in databases/systems/networks.

I'd like to go to school b/c I enjoy atmosphere. Right now I'm learning on my own... tons of resources on the web. Teaching myself unix command line.

i guess I would like to become well-rounded, but in reality this wont get me a paycheck.

Perhaps I should specialize? Any thoughts?

Ryan_leo 01-30-2012 02:25 PM

Just thinking out loud, but what about certain certification programs? Getting a bachelors in computer science would take a lot of time... Maybe i could just focus on specialty?

frankbell 01-30-2012 10:03 PM

I tend to agree with Ryan_leo. Studying for and earning a cert will probably teach you as much and be more useful in looking for employment in your new field, assuming you already have a degree.

ukiuki 01-30-2012 10:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ryan_leo (Post 4588568)
Obviously, this is not a linux question per se, but I wanted to see if it is a *wise* idea to enroll in a computer science degree program at the ripe age of 35.

All thoughts are welcome.

You still a child !! I know a guy that is at least double of your age and is doing his 4th college !!

jefro 01-31-2012 05:12 PM

A degree is a degree for most of the stuff but be warned that by the time you do get done you may have to be interviewed by some pimply little puke who can't pee past their shoes. When they see your grey hair they will write you off.

But, the biggest mistake of my life (well not the biggest) was to think that there was no need for more computer programs and that the technology had reached the glass ceiling back in 84. I say go for it.

aikiwav 01-31-2012 08:04 PM

I'm 32 and almost finished with my CS degree--so you're not alone.

I've heard lots of horror stories about ageism, outsourcing, etc. I've also heard that if you are at least somewhat competent socially and bathe regularly, you're more than halfway there.

So what to believe?

I feel negativity far outweighs the positive on the net--if you're having a good time, you don't need to go online to vent, right? Whatever route you choose, try to enjoy the ride. You spend more time there than at the destination.

k3lt01 01-31-2012 08:13 PM

I'm 43 and just today enrolled in a Bachelor of Information Technology. A local business has said to me that my life experience is attractive to them and they are willing to help me work through my degree when a position in their company becomes available. Now I am an Automotive Technician (Motor Mechanic) by trade and a High School Teacher by profession. In todays tough economic climate the people with a wide range of proven skills are the ones who will get a job.

aikiwav 01-31-2012 08:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by k3lt01 (Post 4589873)
Now I am an Automotive Technician (Motor Mechanic) by trade and a High School Teacher by profession. In todays tough economic climate the people with a wide range of proven skills are the ones who will get a job.

Glad to hear this. It is an angle I'm hoping will help me as well. I've been a teacher for the better part of a decade and I have a physics degree. I plan on trying to aim for something like educational programming or scientific modeling. The OP should also consider how to separate himself from the pack using his current skills and experience.

k3lt01 01-31-2012 08:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aikiwav (Post 4589885)
Glad to hear this. It is an angle I'm hoping will help me as well. I've been a teacher for the better part of a decade and I have a physics degree. I plan on trying to aim for something like educational programming or scientific modeling. The OP should also consider how to separate himself from the pack using his current skills and experience.

I really believe the clincher for people who are "older" is that they need to show they are not "green" with regards to their new vocation. If you know jack (i.e. less than nothing) about the field you are trying to enter there is no way you will be able to compete with an 18-25 year old who has done it at school. If you can show you know what your doing even though you have no formal qualifications in the new vocation and you are willing to work at getting a qualification then you are an even chance, unless of course your a complete dip *hit.

My advice to older people is to have something to show a prospective employer. I can show people my laptop with Cobber on it, I can show people my contributions here and on Ubuntu Forums (even if I am sometimes moody and argumentative), I can show people my blog, and I can show people the scripts I have written and/or modified. How many 18-25 year olds can realistically show this when most have just started or are just finishing their TAFE (college) or University courses while also having life experience. Do the hard yards, build a portfolio of your work and experience that is easy to present, and you may just surprise yourself.

moiseskline 06-08-2012 12:43 AM

Hmm…. 35, I don’t think it’s a very good idea. Unless you already have a very good foundation in programming and are just getting the degree to show how much you know or if you’ve really got a clear picture of your career goals as a programmer, I don’t think it’s the wisest decision. You can check out the classes you’d have to take for programming on the California College of San Diego website and the kinds of jobs you might be able to get. Their programs are pretty career-focused, budget-friendly and CCSD can also provide career advice. I’d suggest reading up on reviews, testimonials or complaints against California College of San Diego to see if it works for you.

PrinceCruise 06-08-2012 05:42 AM

With respect, I may not be really the best person to give advise to a 10 years elderly, but I have witnessed one of my old colleagues of 37 years of age, with a background in databases and Windows administration, reaching a competent level in Python and Perl 'within a year' just by giving a good time on practice. Believe me we mocked him before, now he mocks us whenever he gets the chance. :D
Good luck to you.

Regards.

CHIadam 06-08-2012 07:48 AM

Get certifications. Think of projects, like building a LAMP stack, then make that website you "online resume". Incorporate a wordpress blog onto the site and blog about other projects your working on, or what your reading / studying / problems you have fixed. Keep at it, be passionate about it and you will have a good chance of getting your foot in the door. Start networking with people in the industry. If you really want the degree, take a long time to get it and take night classes, while you do the above first. Thats just my two cents!


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