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How Did You End Up in Tech?

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    Cornelius Ellsonpeter

    I'm wondering how people got their first "tech" jobs...was it through an online job board, a friend, a reference, etc. ? And...what was that first job?

  • User profile image

    Went back to University and before graduating with CISC bachelor's and minor in Math, I was working writing custom software for local area business at a foolishly ridiculous cheap rate.

    I ran the lab at University and Mom & Pop businesses called frequently for quick-n-dirty software, and absurdly cheap, so they call students. I had the Dept. forward those calls to the lab and I worked them over...

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    I graduated in '92, in Nebraska.  Bad economy, coupled with there being few technical jobs available in the region any way meant it took a long time to find something.  When I did, it was working for a grain mill.  So 70% of my job was non-computer related.  I hated that job, but put up with it for about 2 years.  Then a head hunter contacted me at work with a position writing software to track credit card fraud.  Much better.

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    my buddy ixdatul got me a low-end job as IT Help Desk... which grew into a dev position since that company doesn't know how to hire a developer directly...

    ... Then my buddy ixdatul got me a high-end job as a Sr Applications Developer...

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    Does selling resistors/capacitors and transistors at a store counts? Smiley

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    Dr Herbie

    My Masters degree was a crossover into Comp Sci, Maths & Stats from Biology.  My Masters project was a Windows 3.1 app written in C++ that interfaced to an oscilloscope through the serial port.

    My friend Sandy worked for a well know Tea factory that were just starting a project to automate the analysis of tea samples.  They needed, amongst other things a serial interface to electronic scales.  Sandy knew that my Masters project was and put two and two together: result 4 moths of contract work for a pittance (I think it was £4.50 per hour).  I regarded it as an apprenticeship and it gave me good experience.

    So I guess it was a combination of who I knew and what I knew Smiley

    I went off to do my PhD, but returned to tech when I became disillusioned with theoretical research (not practical enough for me) and decided I needed a job that paid properly so I could get married, buy a house, etc.


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    I changed careers about 4 years out of college when some of my original career plans fell through and I found I really didn't like government work or bean counting. I had some experience doing SPSS and Fortran programming for statistics so I used that to kickstart a career in personal computers. I did tech support a couple of years before moving into programming.

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    I got a computer to play video games...then joined a "clan" through Microsoft's Zone (ages ago). The clain didn't have a webpage, so I started learning how to make them.

    Started using flash and photoshop at school, got pretty excited about them.

    After a couple years of developing little pages for myself, consisting of nothing more than html, css, and some minor flash, I decided I was going to be a security guard for a local power-plant Tongue Out

    After about a year of that (still playing on the computer in my free-time), I applied for a job as a web-master for a small Christian ministry in Florida. Moved there, and started working with MySQL for the first time ever. Later picked up PHP when we needed to fill new needs, and not maintain old ones.

    After about 5 years there, I applied for a job at a medical-facility as a business applications developer writing C# on SQLServer. Got it, did it for 9 months, and got invited to Chattanooga, TN to write VB.NET for a startup.

    Now I'm here, in Tennessee lovin' life Smiley

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    My original degree was in industrial design. Since cad was pretty new I ended up doing lisp for Autocad (ugg) since I was the only person brave enough for the job.. Tongue Out

    Ended up on the computer aided engineering side of of the biz and here I am.

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    After graduating in computer science, I looked around for a tech job job in the area but to no avail (I got a 2:2). I broadened my search a bit and went to a went to a few 'milkround' events.

    In the end, I got my first tech job by applying directly online via the company's recruitment website. Within a few months of applying, I had a career and was relocated. It was a programming job on a large variety of different projects mostly C and Java.

    I was with that company for about 16 months, then I transferred to one of the company's Joint Ventures with another relocation and have been there for over 4 years now, again another programming job.....thats what I do im a programmer/software engineer/whatever they are called these days[H]

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    Jason Cox

    Well I got it via word of mouth, I literally got a phone call asking me if I wanted a job. It was a fun job, basicly just doing IT for a small company, some Photoshop and VB6 work.

    Now if you mean my first real tech job out of college, I have to thank for that one.

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    Cornelius Ellsonpeter wrote:
    I'm wondering how people got their first "tech" jobs...was it through an online job board, a friend, a reference, etc. ? And...what was that first job?

    well here is a tale:

    I was in the US Air Force as an aircraft mechanic.

    the forms we used were all manual paper.
    they got some kind of big computer system.
    the forms went to a data entry process.

    Uh Oh, stuff got kicked back due to missing Job Codes, wrong part # etc....

    Sr. staff had a heck of a time due to years of not having to make sure all the details were filled out, this meant that QC inspectors were going to give them heck.

    I was new, I had just been thru all the training on how to fill out the forms.

    I started helping senior NCO's with the changes....

    then Job COntrol ( maint. dispatch folks who also had the new computers)
    wanted to show me the new system ...
    that got me started....

    when I left the service I got a Vic-20 then a C=128 then an Amiga
    then a PC and in the middle I started taking classes....

    So blame the USAF!

    PS:  in my ASBAV -- US DOD test before you enter the serice
    I scored high in all areas EXECPT data processing and crypto!!
    but that test was *NOTHING* like what we do now... it was like a leftover from an office clerk test...

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    figuerres wrote:

    I was in the US Air Force as an aircraft mechanic.

    heh, awesome, so you had been responsible for big guns. Got any pics from old days to share? Big Smile

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    I was working in an office and studying Science (multi-stream) in my spare time... I ended up having to deal with the big "Sperry" to get through a Stats course, and got hooked. One thing led to another and next thing I found myself sorting out RPGII issues at work... and it was all down hill from there.

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