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Old 07-20-2013, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
12,677 posts, read 14,031,451 times
Reputation: 13505

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You're not the only one. One of my friends graduated with a geophysics degree and is delivering pizzas. He's been doing this for a year now. Part of the problem is he's not willing to move where the jobs are (anywhere with sizable oil drilling). I have several other friends with business majors who are either unemployed or working jobs that don't require degrees. It sucks, but folks are going to definitely need some patience in this job market.

Not sure what kind of advice I can offer other than keep looking, and be willing to move to the work. There are jobs, but many of the opportunities exist in places outside a candidates local market. They often don't pay what you may want, but the experience is what you really need at this point. After that, you will have all your life to make the bigger dollars. Don't be afraid to take internship opportunities either. Even if they don't pay, they will satisfy that need for experience. It's better than sitting home and complaining about your current rut
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Old 07-20-2013, 10:15 PM
 
Location: FLG/PHX/MKE
7,288 posts, read 13,516,712 times
Reputation: 11576
That's true to a point. I'm actually more surprised that fresh grads can't write really simple code, more than I am surprised that senior developers have struggles. After years (or decades) programming, a lot of times people lose those fundamentals--at least temporarily--because they've become more analyst than programmer. Even though they do a lot of programming, it's usually more specialized, more complicated, and involves things that junior people might never have been exposed to.

The problem you are having is probably because you don't *have* experience.

This forum is full of people whose unofficial job it is to tell you that your (and everyone's) situation is obviously 110% your fault and unique only to you, but in your case, it sounds like you're just stuck in the same rut that a lot of people get stuck in post graduation. There aren't internships out there for everyone, so not everyone can do one.

Once you do eventually get a job, you can prove yourself and build on that.

You might have some luck expanding your search to quasi-technical jobs that have some degree of programming, or at least a technical component (lots of SQL query building and reporting, for example). You'd be surprised how many jobs like that are out there, and some of them pay very well without having to be a rank and file "programmer". In fact, it amazes me to no end, how much money people get paid to do some very straightforward technical jobs. At this point I think the most important thing you can do, is get something on your resume. And stop listening to the people who browbeat you for not having done something in the past.

Last edited by 43north87west; 07-20-2013 at 11:31 PM..
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Old 07-21-2013, 04:21 AM
 
1,444 posts, read 2,127,827 times
Reputation: 589
I don't see a location in your profile. I skimmed through your post and didn't notice it either. I used to feel that way when I lived in an area without abundant jobs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AStalkingButler View Post
If I knew it was gonna be this hard, I would've stayed in college so that the privilege of being a currently enrolled student would make it possible for me to get an internship. Now I'm really in "no man's land" as far as career prospects go. I had been led to believe that a Math, Physics or Statistics student would have a reasonably easy time finding a job if they had basic programming knowledge. Every day I've been gone through every single listing in my state on Indeed, SimplyHired, my university's job board, LinkedIn, CareerBuilder, Monster, and Dice. I'm lucky if, on a given day, I can find a single listing that implies they might let a candidate with no industry experience try out. It gets tedious, especially because you have like 20 different recruiting agencies reposting the same position.

And no, I'm not conveying a feeling of entitlement. I'm just saying that I'm surprised and I would go back and change things if I knew the job market was so difficult to enter. I would be better off if instead of going to college I had just gotten a desk job after high school and spent 4 yrs teaching myself programming. I have no real marketable skills. I accept that. I guess I kinda bought into the lie that majoring in a non-engineering STEM -- in my case Physics -- out of interest, while trying to If I knew it was gonna be this hard, I would've stayed in college so that the privilege of being a currently enrolled student would make it possible for me to get an internship. Now I'm really in "no man's land" as far as career prospects go. I had been led to believe that a Math, Physics or Statistics student would have a reasonably easy time finding a job if they had basic programming knowledge. Every day I've been gone through every single listing in my state on Indeed, SimplyHired, my university's job board, LinkedIn, CareerBuilder, Monster, and Dice. I'm lucky if, on a given day, I can find a single listing that implies they might let a candidate with no industry experience try out. It gets tedious, especially because you have like 20 different recruiting agencies reposting the same position.

And no, I'm not conveying a feeling of entitlement. I'm just saying that I'm surprised and I would go back and change things if I knew the job market was so difficult to enter. I would be better off if instead of going to college I had just gotten a desk job after high school and spent 4 yrs teaching myself programming. I have no real marketable skills. I accept that. I guess I kinda bought into the lie that majoring in a non-engineering STEM -- in my case Physics -- out of interest, while trying to take myself a good base in computer science fundamentals by taking Java courses, linear optimization, numerical analysis, etc., would at least be a good setup for getting an entry-level position in a variety of roles.
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Old 07-21-2013, 10:40 AM
 
Location: Buckeye, AZ
27,394 posts, read 15,816,842 times
Reputation: 9899
Quote:
Originally Posted by 43north87west View Post
That's true to a point. I'm actually more surprised that fresh grads can't write really simple code, more than I am surprised that senior developers have struggles. After years (or decades) programming, a lot of times people lose those fundamentals--at least temporarily--because they've become more analyst than programmer. Even though they do a lot of programming, it's usually more specialized, more complicated, and involves things that junior people might never have been exposed to.

The problem you are having is probably because you don't *have* experience.

This forum is full of people whose unofficial job it is to tell you that your (and everyone's) situation is obviously 110% your fault and unique only to you, but in your case, it sounds like you're just stuck in the same rut that a lot of people get stuck in post graduation. There aren't internships out there for everyone, so not everyone can do one.

Once you do eventually get a job, you can prove yourself and build on that.

You might have some luck expanding your search to quasi-technical jobs that have some degree of programming, or at least a technical component (lots of SQL query building and reporting, for example). You'd be surprised how many jobs like that are out there, and some of them pay very well without having to be a rank and file "programmer". In fact, it amazes me to no end, how much money people get paid to do some very straightforward technical jobs. At this point I think the most important thing you can do, is get something on your resume. And stop listening to the people who browbeat you for not having done something in the past.
This post exemplifies the problem with using college as your "job training." Since the gen Xers we have heard time and time again that if you do not goto college, you cannot make a living for yourself and will be stuck in McJobs. However for a long time, college was fine. Then when companies hire bad fits that cost them several thousand dollars (if not more) and plus the economy dropping, they want employees to be up to speed upon hire. Look at the two threads that were recently closed where the recent college graduate couldn't learn Quickbooks. Likely, the company wanted him to know how to use the software from the get go (even if it wasn't in the KSAs in the job description.)

It's finally showing that colleges teach one thing while the jobs want if not more, at least a different thing. Add this to the amount of workers looking for the same job and forget it. This is why we have the two+ year "entry level" positions out there.
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:45 PM
 
2,538 posts, read 4,035,685 times
Reputation: 3334
Quote:
Originally Posted by va_lucky View Post
I don't see a location in your profile. I skimmed through your post and didn't notice it either. I used to feel that way when I lived in an area without abundant jobs.
Yes, it is all location. Depending on where you live you may never find a job. If you live in one of the big IT cities you could have a job tomorrow. I know my company is hiring junior level engineers all the time. OP, PM me and I can fill you in some more.
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Old 07-22-2013, 06:54 AM
 
38 posts, read 103,204 times
Reputation: 59
Your being hurt for two reasons:

The first is you have a degree in physics... not comp science or Software Engineering this will block you at the HR level.

The other is it seems like you have no experience from internships... Have you contributed to a OSS project or any of your own personal side projects? If you just have your degree and no project work to show with it you will look very bad compared to other recent grads who have tailored degrees, internships, and projects they have contributed to.
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Old 07-22-2013, 07:57 AM
 
1,728 posts, read 3,049,653 times
Reputation: 1052
The Physics degree is fine. You could probably have a good chance getting a job in engineering companies, especially in their IT departments. My friend started out 'designing springs' to reduce the vibration from electric generators which is boring but it was a start
what type of coding do you do anyway? I've worked with very dumb people(newbies pretending to be 'experts') in IT so there are companies out there who just cant find talented and experienced people
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Old 07-22-2013, 09:04 AM
 
213 posts, read 432,040 times
Reputation: 224
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mharroun View Post
Your being hurt for two reasons:

The first is you have a degree in physics... not comp science or Software Engineering this will block you at the HR level.

The other is it seems like you have no experience from internships... Have you contributed to a OSS project or any of your own personal side projects? If you just have your degree and no project work to show with it you will look very bad compared to other recent grads who have tailored degrees, internships, and projects they have contributed to.
I understand this now, but I was originally a bit surprised because the older generation folks were telling me that they got hired at Microsoft after getting a degree in Applied Mathematics or Physics, without really knowing how to code. I would've exploited college as a glorified vocational school if I knew that's the only way of getting anywhere.
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Old 07-22-2013, 09:53 AM
 
28,441 posts, read 71,138,153 times
Reputation: 18401
Default Well first off....

Quote:
Originally Posted by AStalkingButler View Post
I understand this now, but I was originally a bit surprised because the older generation folks were telling me that they got hired at Microsoft after getting a degree in Applied Mathematics or Physics, without really knowing how to code. I would've exploited college as a glorified vocational school if I knew that's the only way of getting anywhere.
#1 Rule for getting a job: Make a GREAT first impression! I don't care if you are the next Nobel Laurate, nobody and I really mean NO ONE wants to hire somebody with a crummy attitude. Sure, I can understand be a little less than Mr. Sunshine as you are obviously somebody that is more than a little discouraged that you are not working. GOT TO OVERCOME THAT PAL! Saying stuff like "exploiting college as a glorified vocational school" denigrates the hard work that lots of people (including more than a few people that might potentially be sitting across the interview desk from you...) put into interships and other employment focused time in college..

2nd thing -- I and others have explained that there are still non-traditional paths to solid employment in IT. LOTS of people that get CS degrees from lots of different kinds of schools have a ZERO skills in understanding how computer code translate into actual real world problems. YOU THE POTENTIAL TO REALLY SHOWCASE YOUR SKILLS IN THIS AREA IF YOU PUT SOME EFFORT INTO PACKAGING your research project to highlight your talent.

3rd -- and this is often the BIGGEST SHORTCOMING that even talented new grads have -- businesses hire people for how those new employees will help increase the BOTTOMLINE of the company. If you do not exhibit any enthusiasm for helping a company make money the odds of getting a job are extremely slim... In fact,more than a few times, I have seen people with absolutely no ability to even write code get hired as programmers by saying the right buzzwords and being highly enthusiastic about the company's mission. Of course they either learn to code or (more likely) get fired / transfer to something like a business analyst role. And the best interviewers really ask people IN REAL TIME to demonstrate some short ability to write a short segment of actual computer code -- for goodness sakes if you do want to code then please practice solving such short coding examples! Don't be arrogant, even if you write really cool solutions to traditional CS exercises arrogance by itself does NOT exhibit a committment to helping real world businesses make money -- arrogance is not a bad trait for good programmers to sort of whip out when they encounter poor code writers, but to help a company be profitable the goal has to be to FIX THE PROBLEM not get praised for how awesomely clever you are...
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Old 07-22-2013, 05:24 PM
 
841 posts, read 1,084,740 times
Reputation: 783
My degrees are in Physics, and I'm a programmer. Have been one for many years, so it is possible.

But you have to understand how I got started in my career. First of all I had to find a company -- and more importantly, a hiring manager -- that was willing to take a chance on someone like me.

Secondly I had to prove that I had professional-quality programming skills even without a programming degree. I was able to do that because my thesis was a very complicated computer program I wrote to describe certain properties of the atomic structure of silicon. In other words, programming wasn't something I did in my spare time, but an intrinsic part of my degree.
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