Alternatives to College for a Great IT Career
Are you a struggling with your career direction? Maybe you’re finishing your first semester of college or junior college, and you don’t know about pursuing your college degree. Maybe you are looking for a change of career but never went to college. Now you’re struggling or feel limited with your options.
MAYBE COLLEGE ISN’T RIGHT FOR YOU
You’ve always heard you need a college degree to be successful. But the cost of a college degree has skyrocketed, and it requires years of your full dedication. And forget about four years. Less than 60% of college students graduate within six years. To make it worse, the education they receive often doesn’t prepare them for the job skills required in today’s economy. That’s why 44% of recent college grads are underemployed, meaning their job does not require the degree they hold.
IT CAREERS WITHOUT A DEGREE
Today’s economy is skills based. The disconnect between a traditional college education and the job market has created a “skills gap”. The Harvard Business Review recently published an article titled “Stop requiring college degrees” and Fortune Magazine Sr. Editor Adam Lashinsky writes “You don’t have to have a college degree [or know Chaucer and Canterbury Tales ] to get a great job.”
Technology is a leading example of an industry where employers are looking more to job skills than degrees. In a recent Robert Half survey, 71% of CIO’s said they place more weight on “skills and experience” than “whether or not a candidate attended a college/university.” This is a telling new trend because IT offers great jobs with opportunities for advancement. Forbes.com reported earlier this year that four of the “Top 10 Jobs of 2016” are IT related. Kiplinger.com includes three technology jobs in its list of “The 10 Hottest Careers for the Next 10 Years”.
NON-DEGREE TRAINING OPTIONS
But while you may not need a degree for these jobs, you do need training to get these skills. Shark Tank star/Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban often blogs about new forms of education -especially in the tech world – that “work with local businesses to tailor education to corporate needs and create better job opportunities”. Today we are seeing these alternatives appear. There is almost an unlimited amount of training available online – much of it free. In St. Louis there is the new LaunchCode program that connects candidates with structured online training then pairs them with local companies in a form of apprenticeship. Across the country, we are seeing the rise of coding “boot camps” imitating the format Centriq pioneered over ten years ago filling a need for programmers that colleges can’t. The immersive Centriq Training format is a hands-on, “technology only” training that takes only four months – not four years. And, only Centriq offers a choice between Full-Stack Web Development and IT Systems and Security. That’s why Centriq has placed graduates in the IT departments of over 875 Midwest companies.
THE CHOICE IS YOURS
If college is not for you, there are multiple options to gain the job skills that can lead to not just a great job but to a fulfilling and financially stable career. If you’d like more information on how to get started as an IT professional or a programmer/coder, visit Centriq Training or see our thorough guide on college degrees vs IT career training programs. In just four months, you could be on your way to a great new career in technology.