The computer science industry is in a period of upheaval, with some students opting for more conventional academic careers, while others are entering a new market in the field of information technology.
Key points:Microcomputer science is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world with a strong start-up cultureThe market for information technology internships is expected to grow by $5.5bnA new internship program for software engineers could be in the offingMicrocomputer technology is one area where the IT industry has been slow to catch up to the digital revolution, with a shortage of skilled engineers.
“It’s an opportunity for new graduates and those who’ve been in the IT sector for a while to find work in a way that’s more appropriate for their skillset,” says Peter Fries, head of IT internships at Wayfair.
“They can work on a computer and be paid a decent wage, but it’s not the same as being able to work remotely.”
Internships are a great way to get that experience and get a head start in the job market.
“He says there are currently about 400 internships offered each year at companies in the computing sector, but that could be on the rise in the future.”
There’s so much opportunity out there,” he says.”
People want to work in the software industry, they want to be part of that company, they don’t want to spend years working in a computer lab.
“So what are we doing?
Why aren’t we offering those kinds of opportunities?”
The market is growing, so there’s going to be a lot more opportunities in the near future.
“Wayfair internships currently have more than 200 vacancies, but Mr Fries says the number could rise significantly in the coming years.”
We’re seeing a lot of new companies start to look for these types of opportunities in a competitive market,” he said.”
In the future, there’s a whole new landscape open to them.
“The way that it works is they have to be in a certain age bracket and the cost of living is going to have to drop dramatically.”
He predicts the number of available jobs will increase from about 20 in 2017 to over 100 in 2020.
“For the industry to really flourish in the years ahead, we need to have a workforce that’s ready to get into that market,” Mr Fried says.
The digital revolutionMr Fries points to a number of factors that have helped make this a lucrative industry.
“I think the fact that there’s so many students going to universities right now in Australia, it’s a big opportunity for those students to come in, go to school, and then graduate,” he points out.
“One of the main things that’s helped us in the last year is that there is a lot less work to do in the office.”
Students want to do the work in their free time.
“Technology is a great fit for people who are in university and want to get involved in a university course.”
The IT industry’s growth could also be helped by the fact some people in the industry have a strong affinity with computing.
“That’s something that I think has helped us out, is the people who have worked in the area, they’re very passionate about the field,” Mr Flues says.”[And] they’re all in their 20s and 30s and they’re the kind of people who tend to be very tech-savvy.”
Waypoints has been offering IT internship opportunities to the industry for more than a decade.
“Our job is to get them into the industry, to get the right experience, and to help them get into a job,” Mr Fleets says.
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