Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Are STEM the Only Degrees Required for Tech Jobs?

Do you want to work in a tech company, but do not have a STEM degree? Fret not; nowadays, you can still land a job and work for your dream tech company even with a liberal arts degree, surveys say.

A liberal arts degree used to be considered as “useles” but it has become much in demand in the tech world.

A recent article by George Anders published on Forbes.com says this:
Throughout the major U.S. tech hubs, whether Silicon Valley or Seattle, Boston or Austin, Tex., software companies are discovering that liberal arts thinking makes them stronger. Engineers may still command the biggest salaries, but at disruptive juggernauts such as Facebook and Uber, the war for talent has moved to nontechnical jobs, particularly sales and marketing. The more that audacious coders dream of changing the world, the more they need to fill their companies with social alchemists who can connect with customers–and make progress seem pleasant.
Creativity in the tech world is in great demand, and as George Anders says: “Such creativity can’t be programmed.” An example of a tech company that Anders says has relied on holders of liberals degrees is Slack Technologies, a computer software startup founded in 2009. It is the company behind behind today's hottest team-based messaging software.[...]For Anders, it's the fact that much of Slack's braintrust aren't tech folks -- they're liberal arts people. Co-founder and CEO Stewart Butterfield, who is a real person and not one of Bertie Wooster's Drone's Club pals, studied philosophy and history of science for his bachelor's and master's degrees. His is a tech startup garnished with a philosopher's touch. - Read more at:

Last year, Motherboard's Jason Koebler cited a report about tech jobs not needing any bachelor's degree:
A new study published about the city’s technology workforce found that roughly 44 percent of science, technology, engineering, and math jobs in the city require at least a bachelor’s degree.[...]“Many tech ecosystem jobs only require short-term or long-term on-the-job training. By removing the barrier of a college degree, opportunities in the tech ecosystem can potentially empower the 2.89 million New Yorkers ages 25 to 64 who do not hold Bachelor’s degrees,” the report states.
What more, the tech jobs for non-degree holders even pay an average of $27.75 an hour, about 45 percent higher than non-tech jobs with similar requirements, Koebler wrote in his article. - Read more here:
A related article analyzes this trend:
The unpredictability of the job market even applies to STEM fields. Contrary to conventional wisdom, it turns out math and science degrees per se are not and have never been particularly hot. A recent Texas study found, for example, that sociology grads made more money than biology grads. Instead, it has generally been applied science degrees like engineering that have been gone through periods of huge demand—but even within those broad fields, what’s hot at any given moment varies sharply over time. - Read more at:
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