The UK tech sector is growing more than two and half times faster than the overall economy, while in the US more than 190,000 new tech jobs were added in the last year alone. With rising demand for talent to fill these new vacancies we look at just some of the roles that may be available to graduates from the new BSc in Computer Science.
From app developers to drone operators, the tech sector offers unparalleled opportunities for the next generation of technologists.
The first session of the new BSc in Computer Science, launched by the University of London, in partnership with member institution Goldsmiths and online learning platform Coursera, will start in Aprilthis year.
The new degree has been designed to give students not only the fundamentals of computer science but also skills in a number of specialisms that will be in high demand among employers. Industry experts predict that artificial intelligence, machine learning and virtual and augmented reality will be some of the biggest technology trends to take off in the coming years – all of which are specialisms on offer to students choosing the University of London degree.
“Because tech is always advancing – and the technology we use today will be improved again tomorrow – no matter what industry you go into there are endless opportunities.”
Tobias Cieslik, Director at Xult Group, has been working in tech recruitment for more than five years. He said, “Some of the big trends we’re seeing are in augmented and virtual reality, which have become hot topics within the sector. Other areas like autonomous and electric vehicles are developing year on year, while cyber security remains a priority for almost all industries. Because tech is always advancing – and the technology we use today will be improved again tomorrow – no matter what industry you go into there are endless opportunities.”
Sarah Trevelion, Talent Manager at consulting and technology company Techmodal, agrees. She said, “My role allows me to meet some really interesting people who have worked in IT for a number of years but have now moved into subsectors like sales, intellectual property rights and legal advice. Once you have a good grounding in tech there are so many other branches of work you could choose, and the breadth of roles is very exciting.”
“Once you have a good grounding in tech there are so many other branches of work you could choose, and the breadth of roles is very exciting.”
While many companies offer on-the-job training and development opportunities, industry experts agree that a degree in computer science will continue to be rated highly by recruiters.
Sarah Trevelion commented, “At Techmodal a lot of our recruits come in at a junior level and we offer training within the business. For me a good candidate doesn’t just have the basic skills but also has an aptitude for continuous learning. So having a degree not only demonstrates a certain level of ability and exposure, but it also tells me you’re at the right academic level to keep learning.”
“You will be expected to know a lot about a lot. Completing a degree gives you a mindset that’s ready to learn, adapt and deal with challenges.”
Rob O’Brien, Senior Technical Manager (International and Labels) at ITV Studios, knows the importance of a solid academic grounding. He said, “Whatever industry you work in, they are always going to want to use the latest trends and you will be expected to know a lot about a lot. Completing a degree gives you a mindset that’s ready to learn, adapt and deal with challenges.”
For those with a passion for computing, working with the most current tech offers its own rewards, but for others the incentives are more personal.
Phil Peters began his career three years ago and was quickly promoted to Senior Software Engineer at Ordnance Survey. He said, “I love being at the forefront of technology. As an engineer I’m given access to new programmes and new software at least six months before users. But what’s really rewarding is to think that the software and data I’m working on is being used by the police and the ambulance service to be able to find your house faster so they can help you. My work is genuinely benefiting people’s lives.”
Perhaps the most exciting thing about a future career in computer science is that many students beginning their degree now will be doing jobs that haven’t even been created yet. According to McKinsey Global Institute, a third of new jobs created in the US in the past 25 years were roles that did not exist before. From app developers to drone operators and from user experience designers to vloggers, the tech sector offers unparalleled opportunities for the next generation of technologists to create their own career path.