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For the past 6 months, Alberta has heard nothing but ramped up doom and gloom of the oncoming economic scythe. The what-ifs have been plenty, but solutions scarce.
So what can be done to change the economic climate? Petitions? Protests? Better yet it falls on you and you alone.
It’s been generally accepted that Millennial’s think differently about careers than Boomers do, in fact, it’s expected that they’ll hold 4-5 careers throughout their lives. So for many of them, the idea of one education for one job seems odd, almost as if one is putting all their eggs into one basket.
So for many, investing in yourself is just about the best thing you can do. Expanding your skill set or understanding how it can transfer to a different industry is the difference between being out of work and adapting to trends.
Adaptation Is The New Education
Not long ago the idea of changing careers meant going back to post-secondary, it meant costs that could render one in debt. It was not a cost-effective solution for many and understandably so.
However things have changed tremendously, and I’m not talking about the University of Phoenix here. I’m talking about coding. Programming. Development. Call it what you will, keyboard cowboy, I’m talking about learning to code while you plan out your next move.
More importantly, I’m talking about the plethora of free options available online, and no, it’s not a scam. This is the world we live in now.
Coding, The New Frontier
For many, the idea of coding is beyond alien, however the only trick you need in your hat when considering this industry is perspective. What I mean by that is simply this:
- Do you view problems from several angles?
- Can you see the big picture when working on the small things?
- Do you like to learn?
- Do you know how to ask questions that help you solve a problem?
Right now, there are dozens of services that offer free courses on learning how to code. Here’s a list to help you satiate the curiosity I just built:
What’s the Best Programming Language to Learn in 2015?
This question has been asked many times, and you will find extensive reasons behind the ‘why’, however, this article provides a list related to popularity and desirability from industry. Basically, the money languages!
In a year, when prospective employees ask you what you did during the downturn, you can reply: ‘I learned to code.’
‘I learned to code. I learned to build interactive websites, and create apps.’
You’ve proven your worth to future employers by stating your willingness to learn, your adaptability, but most importantly, you’ve given yourself another skill set, one that you can keep in your back pocket.
Ok, So How Many Jobs Are Out There?
Here’s a quick screenshot of CalgaryJobShop.ca with Labour providing 297 jobs:
While Programming shows 368. These were taken on Jan 18, 2016
Alright, How Much Does It Pay?
Using payscale.com, we can get a good idea of what an entry-level (junior) developer can expect to make. Is that $55k median average? Not a bad start for learning it for free, eh? Now, of course, there’s time invested and maybe a few online courses/ certifications that you may want to take, but consider these just like the certs you had in the field. Quick, painless, and providing you with more worth.
I’m Going To Be Honest, This Sounds Scary
I’m sure it does. Honestly, this shit can sound scary. To move from one industry to another, like computers, at your age, doesn’t seem plausible. Can’t teach an old dog new tricks, right? Wrong!
Here are just a few examples that any age group can learn to code, and the advantages therein:
- 5 Reasons You Are NOT Too Old To Learn To Code
- Retraining Baby Boomers To Code In 6 Months
- The Case For Learning To Code
- These Are The People Who Graduate From Code Bootcamp
We have so many amazing organizations here in Calgary that teach, mentor and want to actually, honestly, help people learn how to code the future. The only thing you need is a willingness to learn. Take a chance. Take this amazing opportunity and put the best damn skill in your back pocket Alberta!