After most new college graduates don their caps and gowns, receive their diplomas (Remember: take left, shake right), move their tassels from right to left, the first question on the minds of most is, “OK. What next?” In some cases this question is followed by a glazed look (Recreation majors, anyone?) while others will have considerably more focus such as eyeing the job market. For others, however, it will be a side step into grad school which is, of course, a viable option, but whatever the path is fraught with questions as well as opportunities.

Perhaps everyone knows someone or maybe even more who decided to take some time off before making serious plans. The trouble with the later is how many of these folks ended up better for it? The truth is that whatever course of action is taken it is usually advantageous to plan. With a degree in computer science there are certainly job opportunities available, whether you want to get started in your career or maybe just create a nest egg to continue your education.

Career, Here I Come

There can be little wonder why so many new college graduates elect to not go to graduate school. After all, after four years plus of late night study sessions, cafeteria food, and windy lectures, would make anyone want to choose the real world for at least a reality check. There’s also the ever present lure of a steady paycheck, benefits, and other perks, and much more.

Those with degrees in computer science are in great demand, whether a person has an advanced degree or not. Even with advanced study, chances are good that a computer science degree can be their ticket to a rewarding career. To move into management positions may be an obstacle, but workers today are finding to a greater and greater degree that it’s what they prove they can do and not what degrees they have that can give them the job advancement they desire.

On the Other Hand…

Plainly stated, there are many excellent reasons to attend graduate school, even without taking time off after someone has earned their undergraduate degree in computer science. Some students, with a lifestyle that saw work and school as first in their lives, time off for a short time could be a godsend. Otherwise, it might just be a distraction from their true goals in life. After all, as many reason, why not just get it out of the way while there’s still lack of other commitments.

Many people use the excuse “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” when it comes time to consider more education at a later stage of life. Unfortunately, there may be a degree of truth to that statement, but what truth there may be is distorted. In reality, if even an old dog is motivated and willing to learn, he can learn, which should give anyone the incentive they need to continue their studies in any field they wish.

The bottom line for any professional with an in-demand degree such as computer science, there is a lot that can be done, with or without a graduate education. Granted, there are still areas such as research or teaching where an advanced degree would be to a great extent required, but to enjoy a fruitful career one only needs desire.

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