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  • Computer Science Degree

    OK guys. Im a junior in high school and I'm looking for colleges. For now I've been planning on going to my local Community College for 2 years then transfering, but there is still the idea of going straight into a 4 year college. I live in central New York and would prefer to go to a college around where I live but I wouldn't mind if it was in the North East. So, does anyone know of any good colleges in the North East that have a good Computer Science program?
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    Proud to have been an Irregular, HeadHunter, and a Siege Corps Engineers!

  • #2
    Re: Computer Science Degree

    Anyone?
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    Proud to have been an Irregular, HeadHunter, and a Siege Corps Engineers!

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    • #3
      Re: Computer Science Degree

      I just did a quick google search and came up with a website list. I live in Texas so I can't speak with any authority on how well the programs at these Universities rate in your state. So, consider each school on what you consider important. You mentioned staying close to home as a major point; but don't let that limit your choices on your education. I wish you all the best in your search.

      Sorry I couldn't be of more help. :)

      http://www.universities.com/edu/Bach..._New_York.html

      Cheers,
      HaveANiceDay

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      • #4
        Re: Computer Science Degree

        What is it that you want to do? Do you want to get in on computer design, programming, data base admin, networking? What is kind of jobs are available right now and in the future. I would think that what ever you choose you will want to specialize in an area.

        In Alabama if you go to a two year degree program and then to a univ. you have to make sure the courses you take in the two year college will transfer to the big school. Here in Alabama they don't always do so.

        Just some food for thought.
        The Old Guy
        kin3
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        • #5
          Re: Computer Science Degree

          If you have money to burn go to a big school for all 4 years. If you don't have money to burn earn your AA at the community college then transfer to the big school. You'll save many thousands of dollars.

          In the Northeast there are hundreds of colleges so I'd say you should get cracking on some research. Worcester Poly Tech and Renssealer (SP?) Poly Tech are two that come to mind. Renssealer is in NY so that'd fit nicely but both schools are $$$ so again think hard before committing to those student loans.
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          • #6
            Re: Computer Science Degree

            Damonte dwelt on this for a while before responding. Some of this is personal opinion and some is experience.

            Briefly backgrounded, Damonte has been in the IT field now for over ten years. That's right, IT. Computer Science isn't a career field but a skill background that can be applied to many career fields. Damonte's formal education is a bachelor's in Computer Engineering with minors in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

            Kin mentioned "computer design, programming, data base admin, networking". Generally programming what someone will associate with Computer Science, although truthfully CompSci is more than just programming. Computer Science is the theory of how computers work, how computer languages are written and formed, how compilers and languages are optimized, how the software utilizes the hardware, the knowledge of operating system design, and more. You'll compare programming languages, learn high level and low level languages, understand networking and learn about other relative technologies. You'll do a lot of programming. A lot.

            Information Technology (IT) uses people with a background in Computer Science for many things such as application design, web programming, patch management, infrastructure management, pure software design, software deployment, application packaging, application virtualization, and more.

            It's possible you could be asked to do database administration, but in Damonte's experience it isn't as likely. A computer science background is pretty valuable (more than to be a database admin). Networking? You don't need a Computer Science background to run cable and punch blocks. Computer Design? Actual computer design is a mix of electrical, computer, and material science engineers with some computer scientists and a smattering of many other smart people.

            One last thing about Engineers, Scientists and Other Odd People: While it may be prestigious where you get your degree from for Law, Business or Political Science... in the technical fields WHERE you get your degree from means very little once you get a job and any sort of experience under your belt. What matters is that you HAVE a degree and that you actually UNDERSTAND what you're doing and that you can actually DO what you say you can do. After two years in the field, no one cares what your GPA was.

            Cheers.

            "Everytime I read your posts I do it with Morgan Freeman's voice in my head as if he is narrating your life" - Aimed

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            • #7
              SUNY, insert city, is going to be a whole lot cheaper than out of state man. Ide stay in-state and hook up with really good internships. Albany, Buffalo...
              Sarcoma.

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              • #8
                Re: Computer Science Degree

                Just to echo the above, the degree won't really matter after a couple years. I hire quite a few interns from a local college (RIT - Rochester institute of technology) during their co-op periods [two 6 month blocks where students don't go to school, but rather do real work at companies --really great program]. Anyway, when I interview students, I care more about their knowledge, communication skills and enthusiasm than I do about what they're majoring in. As such, I've hired game design, computer science, IT and a handful of other majors all to do various java and c# programming work.

                Regarding colleges, I really like the co-op program at RIT. It's a private school though, so it's pricey. If you can find other schools that offer work programs, the real life experience is typically more useful in finding a post degree job than the theory is. State schools are also decent, as Sarcoma mentions the SUNY system is pretty inexpensive, though doesn't offer work programs like RIT. I did graduate from SUNY Buffalo, but if I were to do it again based on my experience with RIT, I'd consider there if I could afford it.

                Hope that helps!

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                • #9
                  Re: Computer Science Degree

                  IT major from Drexel University here, I definitely suggest a school with a coop program (Northeastern, Drexel, and RIT come to mind in the northeast). It's a great way to get real-world experience and honestly you learn more from working in a real environment than you do sitting in a classroom (not to mention the pay is great for a college kid :)). Many coop employers also may offer you a job upon graduation. I already have two job offers from previous employers and still have four months until I earn my degree, and many of my classmates have similar offers. If I wasn't going into the Air Force I'd be set, while a bunch of friends from high school graduated last year and are back living at home, working odd-jobs.

                  I didn't join a squad once and this guy named Nardini took me into the back room and beat me with a sock of oranges.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Computer Science Degree

                    Thanks for all the great advice guys! Tuoply and Damonte, what you said coming from someone who has had real world experience means a lot. That has actually just changed the way I look at colleges now. Usually I would think that if I went to a big college such as RPI or RIT it would get me a better chance at a job just based on what college I went to, but I guess not. And the point made about the worl experience is a very good point. I have been looking into schools that have that type of program and I am very interested in it.

                    If you guys have any more insight it would be greatly appreciated. Also, one last question. Lets say I went to my local Community College for the first 2 years and transfered to Drexel or Rochester Institute of Technology or a college that has a work experience program, what would happen with the work experience program since I have already been in college for 2 years?
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                    Proud to have been an Irregular, HeadHunter, and a Siege Corps Engineers!

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                    • #11
                      Re: Computer Science Degree

                      Damonte will just make the observation... do not expect that a more expensive education will automatically equate to a better career. Where you start school for a 4-year isn't as important as where you finish. Even then, where you finish doesn't matter much in some cases. What matters is that you learn what you're taught and understand the difference between academic education and real world application.

                      In technology (IT, computer science, all engineering), learning is something you will do the rest of your life. Be prepared to spend personal time learning new things, growing and improving on your own. Those who feel that a company should train them with everything they need to know will find themselves sorely disappointed and possibly out of a job. For some employers (sadly) it is easier to hire someone who has the skills already than to train an existing employee and run the risk of losing the investment once they are trained (leaving for better pay with new skills).

                      These are the realities of the work world that many colleges do not explain.

                      "Everytime I read your posts I do it with Morgan Freeman's voice in my head as if he is narrating your life" - Aimed

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                      • #12
                        Re: Computer Science Degree

                        Originally posted by Vinman13 View Post
                        If you guys have any more insight it would be greatly appreciated. Also, one last question. Lets say I went to my local Community College for the first 2 years and transfered to Drexel or Rochester Institute of Technology or a college that has a work experience program, what would happen with the work experience program since I have already been in college for 2 years?
                        All schools are different so you'd need to talk to an advisor, but at Drexel you would most likely miss one co-op cycle (i.e. do two cycles your junior and senior year instead of three). I believe RIT and some other co-op schools have two cycles, but don't quote me on that. Most co-op programs are five years so keep that in mind as well.

                        Also, if you have a specific school in mind you definitely want to transfer to after taking a year or two at a state school, make sure beforehand that those credits will transfer. I know a bunch of people who had to retake a bunch of classes after transferring.

                        I didn't join a squad once and this guy named Nardini took me into the back room and beat me with a sock of oranges.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Computer Science Degree

                          Regarding credits and transferring from a 2 year school-

                          Definitely check with the university before you invest too much in the two year school. Some credits may not be applicable. I hired a guy who had gone to a local community college for two years and then transferred to RIT (which, as mentioned is 5 years). He had to retake a few classes, but also had to do the full two blocks [1 year] of co-op. We did, however, hire him because of his co-op with us

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                          • #14
                            Re: Computer Science Degree

                            To build on the community college idea... check with your intended four year school. They often have things worked out with local community colleges... agreements that certain classes at the CC will be acceptable substitutes for certain classes at the four year school. Talk to both sides, it is not uncommon for these agreements to be in place.

                            "Everytime I read your posts I do it with Morgan Freeman's voice in my head as if he is narrating your life" - Aimed

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