CS to Career FAQ’s
What does the employment outlook like for degrees in computer science?
Jobs within the tech industry are in high demand and are expected to increase by 12% from 2018-2028, which is much faster than the national average (Computer and Information Technology Occupations: Occupational Outlook Handbook 2020)
What majors or minors pair well with a degree in computer science?
Nearly 41% of UNC CS students are double majors, with popular ones ranging from Linguistics to Music, and Mathematics. There is no “correct” major or minor to pair with CS if a student decides to pursue two majors and/or a minor.
What are the most popular career paths of UNC CS majors?
According to our 2020 Future Plans Survey (FPS), which is administered to all UNC computer science graduates of an academic year, our most common roles are as follows:
- Software developer/engineer
- Technical consultant
- Data scientist
- Product manager
What is the average starting salary of an undergraduate degree in computer science? For a graduate degree?
According to the results of our 2020 Future Plans Survey, the average salary for a bachelor’s degree was $98,000 and was $140,000 for our graduate (MS/Ph.D.) students. It is VERY important to note that salary depends on a myriad of factors, ranging from location, company size, and candidate qualifications, and more. 29% of our graduates stay in NC, while the next most-represented area is the Northeast and the West Coast, where the cost of living is much higher. These numbers also do not include factors such as signing bonuses, stocks, or other components of an offer package.
How do I create a tech resume? What is the difference between a normal resume and a tech one?
A tech resume is a great way to highlight your “hard” skills such as programming languages, databases, and other tangential skills that would not be found on a typical resume. Additionally, having a “projects” section is essential as this is a way to show off those skills in action. This article offers some excellent advice and samples. A sample tech resume can be found here.
How do I find and apply for internships?
Create and tailor your resume for the positions for which you would like to apply. A cover letter can also be helpful if you are strongly interested in a certain position, as it is a great way to elaborate on your skillset. Make sure that your resume matches (not verbatim) the jobs to which you are applying.
Meet with a career counselor. You can do this either with Stephanie Johnson, the CS Career Development Lead, or with University Career Services if her calendar is full (which is frequent in the fall semester).
Network! Check out this helpful article on how to network and connect with fellow students and professionals in the tech industry. Also, attend as many recruiting-related events as possible in the fall and spring semesters. Be on the lookout for announcements regarding these events in departmental newsletters and social media.
When should I consider applying for internships and full-time jobs?
The typical technical recruiting cycle begins in August and extends through early spring (March/April), depending on the company. As a general rule, the largest amount of internships and FT jobs are recruited from September through November, particularly for the larger tech firms, such as the Big 5 Tech Companies. However, some companies hire for internships year-round, so it greatly depends on the organization.
What is a technical interview? How is it different from a normal interview?
It is a specialized and challenging process that will test your coding skills, personality, and problem-solving abilities. However, if you prepare well ahead of time, then you can ace the interview and make the process much less intimidating. Keep in mind that each company’s interview process looks different, but the information below will provide an outline. Read more about technical interviewing here: https://cs.unc.edu/nailing-the-technical-interview/.
How can I build up my online professional presence (i.e. LinkedIn, Github, etc.)?
In the age of COVID, having a strong online presence is even more crucial to our professional lives. In the tech industry, one of the best ways to stand out in a digital environment is to have a strong LinkedIn profile AND/OR Github repository. Having a LinkedIn account allows you to have access to millions of jobs and internships and connect with industry professionals, whereas a GitHub repository is a great way to store and manage your code for projects. Learn more about them both here.