Don’t get a degree to be a web developer.
Are those fighting words? Good. I hope I can help as many people as possible avoid debt, wasted time and a 4+ year pause in experience in pursuit of a degree they don’t need to be successful.
I’m sorry if you got a degree in computer science or software engineering or whatever version your school called it. But, hey, let’s not pass along our mistakes for the sake of ideals or some right of passage.
Ok ok…I’m sure there’s value in a web development degree. But I know plenty of people who are very successful web designers that didn’t go to school for it. I also know plenty of people that did go to school for it who have told me it wasn’t worth it.
In fact, some of the best advice I got OVER 6 YEARS AGO before I got started in web design was “DON’T GET A DEGREE IN WEB DEVELOPMENT.”
I remember it like it was yesterday. I was at a coffee shop with a friend. He was explaining to me that as a tech director, he didn’t care whether or not someone had a degree in computer science.
All he cared about was the proof of their work.
If your work was good, you got an interview. If your work was bad, it didn’t matter what degree you got from where…your resume got tossed.
I took that to heart, started making things, and I’ve never looked back. That strategy has served me well.
Not long into learning, I doubled my income working on projects in my very limited free time.
Then 5 years into all of this, I landed my dream job at an amazing start-up company called Showit. I pinch myself sometimes. It doesn’t seem fair.
I know people who have way more education than me in web development that are still struggling to find a good job.
Being a part of a tech company I have the unique opportunity to hear about the people that apply for our dev positions. So many people tout degrees, boot camps, etc.
They cited all the same languages that I had in my resume. Dig a little deeper and you find out they aren’t as strong in development as they claim. Why? Because they learned in a classroom and didn’t actually build anything.
Don’t get me wrong, there will be certain businesses that might not look at you without the degree they prefer. But, in my experience, you don’t really want to work for those companies anyways. AND, there’s plenty of other companies out there who are willing to pay you a real income and do not care how much you paid for the degree on your resume.
So, why waste your time? You shouldn’t.
What should you do? Start making stuff.
Make lots of it. That idea you had for a cool app…make it. That thing your friend asked you for…make it. Do it for free. Do it for cheap. Do it for fun. Do it for the challenge…just to see if you can.
You’ll find that in the making of those things you’ll learn way more in all the roadblocks you’ll have to overcome than you would through 4 years of a classroom.
Do not think that after 4+ years and a piece of paper you’re going to be able to land the dream job your advisor told you you were gonna get. Work hard making stuff, and you WILL get it.
Need help? I can point you in the right direction. It’s actually a passion of mine to help people figure out how to do exactly what I’ve done. Which is starting with absolutely no knowledge in web design and finishing with a successful career as a web designer.
Are you ready? No excuses. You’ve got this. You can do it. Now start making stuff.