Returning to my local college this fall

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I've decided to return to my local community college this coming fall. I'm going to major in Physics with a concentration/intention to go into engineering with it.

There aren't that many information technology/computer science/entry level helpdesk job postings where I live. On Indeed.com there's only 1 or 2 pages of openings in the technology/helpdesk field.

Since I can't find a job in my field I've made a job in my field. I'm currently an Open Source Contributor on GitHub for experience/skill.

Is this a smart move for me to return to college this fall? I know that college is a scam (even worse that our system permits it), but is this generally a smart move that I'm going back or not? I'm going to stick to the state/public schools.
 

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  • #2
tnich
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I've decided to return to my local community college this coming fall. I'm going to major in Physics with a concentration/intention to go into engineering with it.

There aren't that many information technology/computer science/entry level helpdesk job postings where I live. On Indeed.com there's only 1 or 2 pages of openings in the technology/helpdesk field.

Since I can't find a job in my field I've made a job in my field. I'm currently an Open Source Contributor on GitHub for experience/skill.

Is this a smart move for me to return to college this fall? I know that college is a scam (even worse that our system permits it), but is this generally a smart move that I'm going back or not? I'm going to stick to the state/public schools.
You don't seem to have a very specific idea of what kind of job you want, yet. That's no crime. If you want a fulfilling job, follow your interests. It sounds like you are interested in computer science. What is it about CS that you like?
If you want a technical job, a technical degree in the same or closely related field will open a lot of doors for you. Many employers will not hire you for a technical job without a bachelor of science degree.
 
  • #3
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You don't seem to have a very specific idea of what kind of job you want, yet. That's no crime. If you want a fulfilling job, follow your interests. It sounds like you are interested in computer science. What is it about CS that you like?
If you want a technical job, a technical degree in the same or closely related field will open a lot of doors for you. Many employers will not hire you for a technical job without a bachelor of science degree.
I'm going for engineering. I've held an interest in that field plus it's very closely related to computers and technology.
 
  • #4
tnich
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I'm going for engineering. I've held an interest in that field plus it's very closely related to computers and technology.
Engineering is still a pretty broad description of what you want to do. Have you narrowed it down at all? Electrical engineering? Mechanical engineering? Civil engineering? Chemical engineering? My guess is that you want electrical engineering since that is most closely related to computers.
 
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  • #5
tnich
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Engineering is still a pretty broad description of what you want to do. Have you narrowed it down at all? Electrical engineering? Mechanical engineering? Civil engineering? Chemical engineering? My guess is that you want electrical engineering since that is most closely related to computers.
Or maybe you are more interested in the software side. In that case, you might think about a CS major.
 
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  • #6
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Engineering is still a pretty broad description of what you want to do. Have you narrowed it down at all? Electrical engineering? Mechanical engineering? Civil engineering? Chemical engineering? My guess is that you want electrical engineering since that is most closely related to computers.
probably closer to computer or mechanical.
 
  • #7
tnich
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probably closer to computer or mechanical.
OK. It seems that you like computer hardware (though as a open source contributor, I would have guessed software). If computer hardware is what you like then yes, physics would be a good choice at the community college level.

You will also want to check transfer requirements for the public schools you are interested in and make sure you have the right boxes checked off in terms of course work. You can save yourself extra years in college that way. Your community college career center or counselors ought to be able to help you with that.

The key thing, though, is to identify what kind of work you really like to do. What is it that gives you a sense of satisfaction? If you can figure that out and find a field that lets you do more of that, then you won't mind the hard work it takes to learn that field. You will probably enjoy doing it. So once again, what is it that you like about computer science?
 
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  • #8
Choppy
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Is this a smart move for me to return to college this fall? I know that college is a scam (even worse that our system permits it), but is this generally a smart move that I'm going back or not?
If you honestly believe that it's a scam, then perhaps going back is not a smart move for you. That's not a great mindset to embark on any endeavour that's going to take tremendous amounts of energy and time. You need to convince yourself that it's worth the time and effort. If not, you're likely to bail as soon as the road gets rough, and you're not likely to get much out of the experience.
 
  • #9
tnich
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If you honestly believe that it's a scam, then perhaps going back is not a smart move for you. That's not a great mindset to embark on any endeavour that's going to take tremendous amounts of energy and time. You need to convince yourself that it's worth the time and effort. If not, you're likely to bail as soon as the road gets rough, and you're not likely to get much out of the experience.
If you are not sure about returning to college, you can always look for a job. If after a year you are happy with what you are doing and where your life is going, then you don't need college. On the other hand, you may decide that the kinds of jobs you can get without a degree are not going to satisfy you, and go back to college with more motivation.
 
  • #10
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Also in the field of physics its really hardto find work though.. in my opinion physics if for whom are passionate with it, engineering is quite interesting, assuming you're going to be learning electrical engineering or civil so you will probably notice the difference between physics and engineering ^_^ different approaches different mindset and different goals but I wish you the best of luck [emoji16] you are always welcome to be part of PF ^_^
 
  • #11
symbolipoint
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I've decided to return to my local community college this coming fall. I'm going to major in Physics with a concentration/intention to go into engineering with it.

There aren't that many information technology/computer science/entry level helpdesk job postings where I live. On Indeed.com there's only 1 or 2 pages of openings in the technology/helpdesk field.

Since I can't find a job in my field I've made a job in my field. I'm currently an Open Source Contributor on GitHub for experience/skill.

Is this a smart move for me to return to college this fall? I know that college is a scam (even worse that our system permits it), but is this generally a smart move that I'm going back or not? I'm going to stick to the state/public schools.
You "made a job in" your field? Then do you receive wages or salary? Maybe no; so you just do what you do in this "job" you made to gain experience. That it? A little clarifying explanation may be nice.

Returning to college gives the opportunity to study in courses some of which are not always well designed or not always well-taught; or you at times need to watch the course description very carefully to be aware of just what the course is intended to do for the students. "Scam" is usually not the most reliable way to classify an undesirable course.
 
  • #12
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If you plan on majoring in engineering, most coursework is similar for all engineering degrees in the US. As an engineering major in CC, you are still required to take the full calculus series, ode, linear algebra, full physics series. You may need to take 2 semesters of general chem, instead of one, depending on what engineering you are listed as. I would consider getting the math and physics out the way, then worry later. As you take these courses, you will learn more about your likes and dislikes.
 
  • #13
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I've decided to return to my local community college this coming fall. I'm going to major in Physics with a concentration/intention to go into engineering with it.

There aren't that many information technology/computer science/entry level helpdesk job postings where I live. On Indeed.com there's only 1 or 2 pages of openings in the technology/helpdesk field.

Since I can't find a job in my field I've made a job in my field. I'm currently an Open Source Contributor on GitHub for experience/skill.

Is this a smart move for me to return to college this fall? I know that college is a scam (even worse that our system permits it), but is this generally a smart move that I'm going back or not? I'm going to stick to the state/public schools.
Most people that say college is scam have a child like personality. A child demands that everything be handed to them with no effort on their part. Many people you say college is a scam either:

Majored in the humanities and stopped at a BA in a highly saturated field. Did not understand the fact that graduating college is not guarantee a job upon graduation. Only put the minimum amount of effort into obtaining a degree, i.e., graduating with a very poor gpa.

Perseverance is key...
 
  • #14
symbolipoint
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Most people that say college is scam have a child like personality. A child demands that everything be handed to them with no effort on their part. Many people you say college is a scam either:

Majored in the humanities and stopped at a BA in a highly saturated field. Did not understand the fact that graduating college is not guarantee a job upon graduation. Only put the minimum amount of effort into obtaining a degree, i.e., graduating with a very poor gpa.

Perseverance is key...
Students can expect that Calculus 1/2/3, Introduc.linearalgebra&diff.equations combo, Physics 1/2/3, General Chem 1&2, are mostly well-designed and well taught wherever they are offered (maybe not always) and are not scams. Otherwise, compare each course between syllabus, official course description, and what content was actually included (like after you actually took it) to determine if it was a scam.
 
  • #15
Joshy
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I think it's worth a shot. Junior college is relatively low cost and low risk for you compared to the big picture, and so you can try and see if you like it. My story of returning to college isn't the most noble one, but I was quite lucky and found my passion during coursework; it was not something I knew before I enrolled. I think it's okay to not know before or in the beginning. The problem is when you're > three or four years in and you realize you don't like it.

I've heard a few people say some interesting things about academics. It's really what you make of it. I saw a lot of classmates being worked by the system and moving through the curriculum... following the checklist to its bare minimum to get their degree. It probably "looks" like a scam when they just invested four or five years into something they didn't really enjoy; they probably didn't absorb enough to find a competitive/interesting job, or they were able to achieve a job in a field they didn't like much.
 
  • #16
symbolipoint
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This here describes a real problem:
....
I've heard a few people say some interesting things about academics. It's really what you make of it. I saw a lot of classmates being worked by the system and moving through the curriculum... following the checklist to its bare minimum to get their degree. It probably "looks" like a scam when they just invested four or five years into something they didn't really enjoy; they probably didn't absorb enough to find a competitive/interesting job, or they were able to achieve a job in a field they didn't like much.
Finding what you want to do so often is a decision made according to courses that you take, choose, required-to-take, among different major field tries. Not many people know what career and jobs they want until later - after their earned degree. Workable well for some, not so well for others.

The bare minimum to earn the chosen degree - this is a potential problem, because one does not specifically know what job one wants; so course choices were not based on one being best informed and having the best developed self-understanding. You might say, "Get some academic and career counseling.", but if one has had any BAD counseling, then one is likely to stay away from any further such counseling, not be given good advice or maybe not know what to do with good advice, and ultimately just take the minimum courses to get a degree in something.
 
  • #17
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I know that I want to do something with engineering.
 
  • #18
tnich
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I know that I want to do something with engineering.
That is a good start. Find out what course work you need to get into an engineering major at your favorite four-year school and get to work on it next year at your community college. If you find the science and math coursework stimulating, you will know you are on the right track. As you learn more about math, physics, chemistry, and computer science, you will be able to make better decisions about what engineering specialty to major in.
 
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  • #19
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I know that college is a scam
This is not entirely true. In particular, I think it is safe to say that you will not find any ABET accredited engineering programs that are scams. Just stay well away from angry studies and the like, and it will be worth the effort and cost.
 
  • #20
symbolipoint
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This is not entirely true. In particular, I think it is safe to say that you will not find any ABET accredited engineering programs that are scams. Just stay well away from angry studies and the like, and it will be worth the effort and cost.
What are those "angry studies"?
 
  • #21
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What are those "angry studies"?
Please use your imagination here. I am bound to offend someone if I spell this out.
 
  • #22
symbolipoint
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This is not entirely true. In particular, I think it is safe to say that you will not find any ABET accredited engineering programs that are scams. Just stay well away from angry studies and the like, and it will be worth the effort and cost.
What are those "angry studies"?
Please use your imagination here. I am bound to offend someone if I spell this out.
My imagination may lead me the wrong way. Are these "angry studies" sociological reports of analyses published in journals, or are they politically or sociologically motivated university or college courses possibly containing propaganda?
 

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