Should I do a Masters?
I have actually been thinking about studying for a Masters in Computer Science for a while now… After a girl at my previous job talked about doing a 2-year part-time course it’s been on my mind since. The fact she was doing some Marketing role and willing to jump into a completely different career path inspired me. I CAN DO IT TOO! I have always been too scared to jump into it because of the fear of failure, of being too dumb and also the price tag. I can’t afford it and I never will but my ex-colleague told me you can apply for a student loan to put towards it. You would pay it off in your salary just like an undergraduate degree. Do I rack up my debt and study a subject that I’ve always had an interest in?
This leads to asking the age-old question: should I study for a Masters Degree?
I’ve always thought I was too stupid to do something so technical. BUT YOU KNOW WHAT!??! That’s all my mind. It’s stopped me from achieving things that I actually liked doing. I’m bringing my forum post back and I’m printing it off, framing it and putting it on my goddam wall to remind myself that that poor 14-year-old need not fear and I’m not that person anymore. I believe in myself! The foundations of success are learning from our failures. It’s easier said than done though I think the first step is taking that baby step.
Why do I want to study Computer Science?
For as long as I can remember, as my mum reminds me, I’ve wanted to become an inventor. I’ve always wanted to produce my own games, programs, software ANYTHING to my heart’s desire. Why? Well, it’s almost like you are an e-God. You can create anything you want. From making a new world to jump into, a game to entertain and increase someone’s happiness, a tool that can help others or change the way people think or work. Whatever it is, it can find a purpose and a use. It’s the same with music and the arts. It surrounds you in a world created and imagined for you by another individual. It’s special and unique. I’ve always found that coding websites would make me go into this ‘zoned out’ mode. It’s the same with tinkering on my website, blogging, learning piano, jewellery making and painting. Time just rushes past me and my mind isn’t clouded and I’m in zen. Is that bad? Should I be more mindful so time doesn’t fly past so quickly? I don’t know but whatever it is I enjoy it.
Being able to program is an amazing skill to have and I know it’s a bit lame because we should value the real world but the internet and technology are something that humans created and invented to progress our generation, to go beyond what is physically and biologically impossible for us to do. Look at planes, cars, phones, the internet. Everything that connects us, moves us, entertains us is magical and beautiful. We know our future and what’s going to happen to our bodies, we know what part of the organs does what and how we make babies or grow old etc but with machines the future is unknown. It’s a future that can actually grow and it can live beyond us. Life is still the most valuable thing because each life is unique and so fickle and delicate. The use of technology, software, tools anything to aid us to enhance or make our lives easier makes it integral to our society. With the number of problems and their complexity increasing machines can take charge of the repetitive tasks to achieve “automation” (like in my job) so that we can spend more time living. Some may argue that it is BECAUSE we now require so much tech to live that it has become a necessity and the innovations are purely because we have grown to rely on technology so much but that’s called technological evolution…RIDE WITH THE WIND GUYS!!
I even started dating a guy who’s hobbies and career were exactly in line with my hopes, dreams and desires. His life, his skills and his drive were what I wanted. Being with him showed me how much private time and dedication behind closed doors it took to get to get where he was. The image he released out to the world, the books he wrote all took 100% of his energy and despite him not being a good boyfriend his work ethic inspired me to change jobs and work towards what I want NOW and not just dream about it.
Why should I get a formal qualification over self-studying?
I’ve found many courses online for free, for cheap and I have even looked into those ‘bootcamps’ offered. The boot camps seem like a fast track step into a career in Software development. They cost the same as a Masters degree too. What I want to do is obtain a solid foundation in the basics of computer science, problem-solving, algorithms, cryptography and just different areas to see what I like. I don’t really know whether I want a career in it just yet or whether I want to use it in aid of my design skills. I just want to learn how to program so I can create something from start to finish lol; concepting, designing and then developing. I have so many fun ideas it would be cool to have the skillset to explore them all. I really like my design career and I feel like it’s going in the right direction right now and a part-time 2-year course would improve my skills which I can apply to my current role and also give me a proper guidance and environment where I can slowly decide and migrate rather than rush into a complete life change.
My mum says I should just go for it and that money is money and anything that feeds into you as a person is much more worthwhile than buying material things. I do agree with her but I’m still scared. At the moment, I am really enjoying what I’m learning on the cs50 course. I know a Master’s degree is completely different as it will require a lot of time, dedication and motivation needed to complete so I’m going to continue this course and see where I end up. For now, a Master’s degree is a possibility on the mind 🙂 Since I don’t have a boyfriend and my friend pool is shrinking I guess now is the perfect opportunity to jump into something I’ve always wanted to do…. starting from today 🙂