Handy Tips for Computer Science Students

  • In light of the graduation season, I would like to share my thoughts on helpful advice for incoming/current computer science students. These tips will be focused on academic, lifestyle, and career preparedness.

    Well of course academics is important, ensuring you maintain a good GPA will help you in the long run. It is better to start well early, getting A's in most of your lower-level courses which should be easier than upper-lower courses. This is due, since once you reach your upper-level courses if you do not do so good in a few it should not hurt your GPA much. As you must have been told tons of times before do not procrastinate. It is a hard habit to break but will ensure you will succeed in your college career and life as well. Start on your homework and projects as soon as their given, do not look into the assignment the night before or hours before the midnight deadline. Of course, if you are stuck after you have done your research, ask for help from fellow students, teaching assistants, your school's tutoring center, or even your professor. Do not expect them or anyone to do the homework for you because you end up losing, seek them for guidance.

    Computer Science students do not have a life, that is a lie. The key here is adequate time management and setting your priorities in order. Get a planner to organize your daily and weekly goals. Stick to a plan that works for you, everyone is unique. I use Google Calendar, it helps me map out my tasks and syncs across all my devices. Get some hobbies or activities to help you relax, so you can focus on coding more efficiently. You should take advantage of your university's gym or recreation center to recharge your batteries. Exercise has a lot of benefits by reducing stress and helping you focus, sitting down all day on a desk is not good for your health in the long run. Sleep is also important, try not to pull all-nighters, grogginess is horrible. Eat a well-balanced diet, eating microwaved food all-day gets tiring after a while.

    Ok so I am studying computer science, how do I get a job? There are many factors to this question. First fo all, it is a great idea to find your passion early whether you want to go into software development or cybersecurity, or the many other fields. Apply to internships as soon as you can maybe during your sophomore or junior years, so you can obtain as most experience as possible. Here the GPA comes back again, most companies will have a recommended 3.0 GPA for internships and you need to help yourself stand out as much as possible. Join professional organizations such as the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers or the Society of Women Engineers, there are other organizations as well. These have annual national conventions, where you have the opportunity to network and obtain intern and full-time positions. Nowadays, it is highly recommended to do some side projects relating to your passions, you can make an app or even contribute to open source. This will look good in your resume and shows you care about computer science. Also, make a LinkedIn by growing your network and ensure GitHub showcases your projects.

    Well I hope you enjoyed these tips and wish you the best in this wonderful journey of your college career in computer science. Feel free to contact me for additional advice, I am happy to help. Feel free to connect and chat on my LinkedIn

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