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Computer Science against all odds

  1. Oct 7, 2011 #1
    I've been struggling for a while to decide which major to put on my transfer application. Some schools don't allow engineers to change majors after transfer, so I figure it's good to make a solid choice now. I wanted to be a civil engineer, but after physics and chemistry I am also interested in EE, ME, and ChemE. I've also found programming to be quite fun and challenging, and I really like math, so I've considered computer science as well. I titled this post "CS against all odds" because I never thought that I'd end up wanting to study CS and just sit in front of computers all the time. It looks boring and unhealthy to the observer, and I wanted to spend a lot of time outdoors because I love nature, but I'm finding that CS makes sense to me and that lots of important problems are solvable using CS. I like the fact that there is a good use for the math I'm taking (linear algebra, whatever comes after..), and I like the fact that it's a good skill that is useful everywhere. I guess my worry is that after 10 years I'd find that there's more to life than sitting behind a computer. But again, that might only be the perception of it or the feelings of someone who never had a passion, or at least interest, from the beginning.

    Oh, also, any argument for computer engineering vs. computer science?
    What are some "unusual" (i.e. cool!) jobs that a CS major might get? As in, if I did not want to work on things I consider frivolous (like games, entertainment apps, finance, most websites), but rather wanted to be involved in projects useful to humanity, or just science in general (re:eek:ceanography!), would it be easy/hard for me to go that route?

    Thanks for reading, I mean no offense by calling those things frivolous - they are important to everyone, including me to some degree. I'm just trying to hold on to my ideals as best as I can (I came back to school wanting to build infrastructure in the third world). I'm also trying to get an idea of how broad CS is. I love solving problems, don't mind spending a whole working day tackling a development idea. I hate doing routine stuff.

    EDIT: also, any arguments for computer engineering vs. computer science?
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 7, 2011 #2
    I would pick an engineering degree over computer science. Many more career choices in the long run. And you can teach yourself more and more CS as you progress in your career.
  4. Oct 7, 2011 #3
    I think it should be noted that CS is more than just programming.
  5. Oct 7, 2011 #4
    Yes, no offense to computer scientists. It is a very difficult and broad field of study.
  6. Oct 7, 2011 #5
    Thanks for the input. Edgepflow, that's an interesting suggestion, as I feel that a lot of folks would say that the practical choice is computer science considering the current and potential future job market. I don't know which engineering field would suit me best, as I would love to study them all; this dilemma is part of the reason why CS sounded good, as it can be applied everywhere.

    You say that overall there are more opportunities for engineers. Could you expand on that?
  7. Oct 7, 2011 #6
    Engineers are in demand now, if not in the coming years. If you are interested in programming, physics, EE, and CS, I would say major in Computer Engineering.
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