US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

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52 Replies - 11054 Views - Last Post: 18 February 2010 - 09:31 AM

#1 skyhawk133  Icon User is offline

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US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Post icon  Posted 14 January 2010 - 03:53 PM

I've seen a few articles here recently talking about the decline in the number of computer science majors graduating in recent years. I think this is a good article at TheRegister:

http://www.theregist...ase_boost_plan/

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Famed Pentagon wildcard boffinry outfit DARPA issued a stark message today. According to the military crazytech bureau, America faces a crippling shortage of mad scientists - in particular, of mad computer scientists - in the near future, and only drastic action in the US educational system can rectify this.


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Replies To: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

#2 erik.price  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 14 January 2010 - 04:06 PM

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Study participants believed that the “dot-com bust” and “international outsourcing” have led to fewer computer science jobs.

I can understand the worries of new prospective CS (or related) students about outsourcing and a declining market. I was thinking about the same thing myself.

I didn't think that it would have such an impact on Computer Science enrollment however.

This post has been edited by erik.price: 14 January 2010 - 04:06 PM

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#3 Martyr2  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 14 January 2010 - 08:47 PM

I am not surprised, sad to say that the USA under funds all of their education. It is just not a priority for them anymore. Then on top of it, you have a bunch of companies out there that either 1) don't take computer science serious enough to invest in it 2) waste the talent they do have graduating (lets make a facebook clone!) or 3) simply are not adding enough new exciting projects to get people sparked into the idea of having CS as a career path.

Can't say Canada is too much better, but at least they fund education a lot more. :)
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#4 SwiftStriker00  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 14 January 2010 - 11:12 PM

Well as a student this while sucks for America, is good for me. I like to think of myself a competent programmer, so job out of school, and job security looks pretty good based on this article.

I read a similar article a few years ago saying that the most needed jobs in the US were computer and computer related science jobs.
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#5 BenignDesign  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 07:54 AM

View Posterik.price, on 14 Jan, 2010 - 06:06 PM, said:

I didn't think that it would have such an impact on Computer Science enrollment however.


I don't imagine it's impacting the enrollment all that much. What I gather is the primary concern is the amount of graduates. The vast majority of students entering post-secondary education as a CS major will not graduate from the department. In my educational experience alone, I know at least 50% of the students in my 100 level courses were not in my 300 and above level courses. Some surrendered and quit. Some flunked out. Some switched majors.

View PostMartyr2, on 14 Jan, 2010 - 10:47 PM, said:

I am not surprised, sad to say that the USA under funds all of their education. It is just not a priority for them anymore.


Yes, education is severely underfunded in the US, but when you look at the current state of the economy, there's no money for anything at this point.

View PostSwiftStriker00, on 15 Jan, 2010 - 01:12 AM, said:

Well as a student this while sucks for America, is good for me. I like to think of myself a competent programmer, so job out of school, and job security looks pretty good based on this article.


Unless you have an inside connection, don't bank on it. The jobs are out there, yes, but they're not always easy to get. Stick to your guns and do whatever you can to get your foot in the door and you'll do alright, but don't bet your ass on an amazing position right out of school.

This post has been edited by BenignDesign: 15 January 2010 - 07:55 AM

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#6 EdwinNameless  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 08:14 AM

From article:

Quote

There's much talk of projects and extracurricular activities, which all seems a bit mundane for DARPA - one might rather have expected a plan to equip junior tech dorks with powerful robot servants able to protect them from towel-snapping jocks, and/or crafty exclusive technologies able to attract the attentions of the opposite sex: flying/submarine cars, love-hormone body sprays etc.



WTF?!
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#7 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 08:40 AM

This is really to be expected. With all the talk about getting a good education, the reality is that most corporations don't want skilled labor. They want cheap labor.

Take a look at any job posting anywhere and you'll see that they want experience over education, and that experience is very specific to the tasks of that exact position. Translation: you must have done the job before and still want to keep doing it! What educated person wants to keep doing the same thing day after day after day? A sharp mind requires variety and new challenges, but the corporation wants drones to keep the cog wheel turning.

--Oh, and I think that articles like this one stem from industry's desire to import more cheap labor, despite the 10% unemployment rate.

This post has been edited by CTphpnwb: 15 January 2010 - 08:42 AM

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#8 BenignDesign  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 08:45 AM

View PostCTphpnwb, on 15 Jan, 2010 - 10:40 AM, said:

--Oh, and I think that articles like this one stem from industry's desire to import more cheap labor, despite the 10% unemployment rate.


If you flood the market with new grads, the salaries drop lower and lower....
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#9 CTphpnwb  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 09:16 AM

View PostBenignDesign, on 15 Jan, 2010 - 11:45 AM, said:

If you flood the market with new grads, the salaries drop lower and lower....

Yes, but that's long term. Big Business wants short term profits, and the way to cut wages quickly is to import more cheap labor. In this economy it's hard to justify increasing H1B visas without laying the groundwork: "US faces critical lack of skillset to have wages undermined here."

By the way, I think the free market response to such claims as made in the article is that Business needs to offer higher starting wages to recent graduates and demonstrate that there is a future for them by increasing the pay of people already in the field.

This post has been edited by CTphpnwb: 15 January 2010 - 09:33 AM

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#10 dorknexus  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 01:28 PM

this just means we are an endangered species now and hot naked PETA bitches are going to rescue us. i'll be waiting patiently.
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#11 GeekBoy  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 03:18 PM

Yes there is such a "shortage" that salaries are lower now than back in 2001 and companies, even Microsoft, are on a hiring freeze.
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#12 beju0506  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 15 January 2010 - 09:16 PM

They can hire me... I'll be graduating in May. :-D
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#13 1cookie  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 16 January 2010 - 10:48 AM

View PostDark_Nexus, on 15 Jan, 2010 - 12:28 PM, said:

this just means we are an endangered species now and hot naked PETA bitches are going to rescue us. i'll be waiting patiently.


I think that deserves a lol DN!......lol :D
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#14 homemade-jam  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 17 January 2010 - 03:41 AM

Graduating 2012 in CS :)
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#15 Programmist  Icon User is offline

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Re: US Faces Critical Shortage of Computer Scientists

Posted 17 January 2010 - 10:43 AM

I don't know about the industry in general, but I always hear recruiters saying that there are shortages of "senior Java people", but no one seems to know why that is the case. All I know is that I have not had any difficulty finding work over the past 5-6 years. There are usually plenty of jobs to choose from. Also, my salary has been steadily (and sometimes abruptly) increasing - even during the recession. To me this indicates a shortage of qualified candidates. That may not be the case in the rest of the nation, but the DFW area has been that way for a few years.
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