In Part 1 of our series “What Can I Do With a Computer Science Degree?”, we started looking at the kinds of jobs you can do with a Comp Sci degree and what are the main differences between these options. Because of how broad computer science’s applications are, there are many careers. Here are some more options for you to explore!
5) Data Scientist:
Data scientists create mathematical models to address real-world problems to help companies make decisions on anything ranging from how to reduce workplace accidents to how they should market their products.
Programming languages many data scientists use include Python, R and Java as they’re good for analyzing and visualizing data and SQL which is used for database management. Other important tools they need to know how to use include Hadoop (an open-source software used to work with big data), SAS (suite of software products used to do data management and analysis for business insights), data mining and warehouse where data mining is the process of looking through big datasets and data warehouse is a system created for data analytics. And they need to be familiar with machine learning which examines models and algorithms to analyze large datasets.
Soft skills include analytics and good problem-solving skills because data scientists need to understand and analyze their data well to see how they can use that information to solve problems. Clear writing and public speaking skills are also necessary because data scientists will need to explain their findings and interpretations to clients, employers and other team members. Being business-focused is also useful as many employers seek data scientists to help them improve their business strategies.
6) Web Designer:
Website designers plan and create engaging websites that look aesthetically pleasing and help site users find what they need. Once they finish their creations, designers pass their ideas to web developers who bring the plans to life. However, some designers double as developers and can create websites after designing them.
Other necessary skills include using software like Adobe Illustrator and Adobe InDesign. CSS is a style sheet language that is used alongside HTML to change aspects like fonts, layers and colors. Excellent graphic design skills can help web designers stand out from everyone else so honing these skills in addition to technical ones is important.
7) Security Analyst:
Information security analysts focus on data and network protection to protect their companies’ or organizations’ digital assets. To do so, they need to stay informed about changes in such a fast-evolving field. Information security analysts work with executives, IT teams, and colleagues across their organizations and sometimes train employees about best practices. They establish company security protocols, conduct tests to search for system weaknesses and develop response plans in case security breaches happen. Aside from the challenge of staying up to date with current technology, information security analysts may sometimes deal with stressful situations if a cyberattack occurs.
Top employers include computer systems design and related services, finance and insurance, and information. Information security analysts usually need a computer science-related bachelor’s degree. With some companies looking for an MBA in information systems. Industry-standard certifications can boost employment prospects for professionals in the field. A security analyst’s job revolves around data and network protection.
Important hard skills an analyst would need to have include knowing about industry-standard programs like Blackboard, Apache Ant, Symantec, and Django. They also need to know about various databases and software for development, programming, network monitoring, and virus protection. They must also write code to prevent and respond to cyberattacks and need a strong knowledge of how networks function to solve security problems. Key soft skills include strong problem solving, analysis, being attentive to detail and communication skills since they need to analyze and solve security problems effectively then communicate that information clearly to team members, executives and clients throughout the organization.
8) Software Engineer:
Computer software engineers apply engineering principles and systematic methods to develop programs and operating data for computers. They work with system programmers, analysts, and other engineers to obtain and apply important information for designing systems, projecting capabilities, and determining performance interfaces. They also analyze user needs, offer advice about designing elements, and help with software installation. Designing software systems requires professionals to consider mathematical models and scientific analysis to project outcomes.
Important soft skills include good communication and organization skills. Software engineers will often need to split attention across different parts of the same project or switch between projects when working on a deadline or to meet the team’s needs. Being attentive to detail is necessary too as they must troubleshoot coding issues and bugs as they happen and track details of many ongoing projects.
9) Computer and Information Systems Manager/Systems Manager:
Computer and information systems managers generally oversee the information technology departments within businesses and organizations. A systems manager’s duties depend on organization size and how much technology they use daily. In smaller settings, systems managers may offer support on an as-needed basis, while larger organizations may need larger IT departments with more hands-on systems manager roles.
Important hard skills systems managers would need to know include network and IT management, which involve overseeing wireless networks, cloud storage, and other systems of data storage and communication and managing daily IT operations or providing support when needed. Project management is a necessary skill because you would be overseeing many IT-based projects like implementing a new computer system, teaching employees how to use a new piece of software or creating new data storage or recordkeeping systems. Knowing how to use MS Office well is necessary as Microsoft creates and manufactures most of the software used by businesses and organizations.
Soft skills to develop include strong analytical and organizational skills. Leadership skills are important because computer and information systems managers guide the collective efforts of systems analysts, information security professionals, and software developers. As team leaders, they need to delegate, accept responsibilities and always be trustworthy and reliable. System managers need to write reports, instruction manuals and relay information to people with varying technical backgrounds in clear and understandable ways.
Generally, systems managers hold at least a bachelor’s degree. Graduate education can increase earning potential and may open doors to paths to more advanced careers, but they aren’t necessary.
If you want to have a deeper look at more specific aspects like salaries and other education requirements, you can check the careers page on computerscience.org. To get help on getting started with a job or internship search, resumes, or interviews or anything else feel free to make an appointment at the Career Center!