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Do undegraduates with experience stand a chance to get hired?

By c_djraj ·
I was just wondrin to hear comments from the group based from their experiences and locales if a person who happens to be an undergraduate but with experience stands a chance in the IT industry compared to newly Grads and degree holder?

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I agree with you

by lhjr1947 In reply to Age does count!!

Nobody wants to admit that they want younger (less salaried) people that they can work to death and then toss them out like a dirty old rag. I'm 56 with over 15 years experience programming business database applications. I have the latest .Net Certs and when they call me for an interview they comment how impressed they are with my experience and qualifications UNTIL they see me in person and then its the old "Thanks for coming in, we'll get in touch with you" YEA RIGHT. Don't hold your breath. I have been searching for almost 2 years now. So NO ONE is going to tell me that age is not a factor. Maybe I should move to INDIA (where my job was sent) and work over there for $30 a month. Thanks to George Dubya and his Haliburton buddies.

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by Richard.Gossett In reply to Experience

Ideally, experience in a related job will win over education only. Expecially if the job requires special skills. In most cases, individuals gain that knowledge not only on hands on, but through a solid base of basic education.
I think that most will agree that you can't be technical unless you can read and understand technical manuals and apply mathematical equations to such things as binary, octal, etc.
You never stop learning, and to advance in our field, experience needs to be balanced by higher education in order to advance.
Final note: For those interested in gaining both an education and experience. The govt does hire "co-ops". These are individuals going to school and working at the hospitals in their related field. Pay is not the highest, but it beats Burger King.

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Bill Gates?

by ProblemSlayer In reply to Experience

Somebody correct me if I am wrong, but I believe Bill Gates dropped out of college. Now I am not suggesting anyone emulate him per say, but I do know of some very successful people who did not have a formal degree. I think it really comes down to initiative on the individual to learn, gain experience, broaden their horizons. If you can find such an individual you should hire them, degree or not.

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Imagine our world if Bill stayed in school

by vawwkayaker In reply to Bill Gates?

Imagine the world if Bill Gates had stayed at Harvard (or was it Yale) to get his degree. How much would he be worth? How much would YOU be worth?

I guess having and not having a degree really does make a difference . . . but which has more benefit ??!!

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Bill Gates

by jheath In reply to Imagine our world if Bill ...

One key point to make is that Bill Gates did attend college. He just did not complete the degree.

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I'll take experience

by BlueKnight In reply to Experience

I'll take verifiable experience over education. Not that education isn't worth anything, it is, but if you have a couple of good candidates with about the same experience level, then education may be the tie breaker. Education alone isn't the deciding factor for me, I'd rather see good, rounded experience.

I spent the first 16 years of my career without any degree. Everything I knew, I learned on the job, but back then companies were willing and able to provide OJT. I eventually went back to school and got a dual AA degree in Computer Science and Business Management.

My experience is what has gotten me every job I have had. Although not in management these days, I am still asked to consult in the interview and hiring process. Education alone to me is like someone having only a CNE for example. Sure they're certified, but it doesn't show they can DO the work.

Get all the experience you can and cultivate good references for when you need them... and don't burn your bridges.

BTW... 8 years ago, I was hired into my current position at age 47. Age discrimination IS alive and well - unfortunately. In the end, it was my experience that got me the position, so keep at it.

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Small minded

by kktm123 In reply to How small minded

Very well put. The misconception that degree holders are somehow mentally far superior to non-degree holders is a farce. It does depend on the individual. I have seen complete idiots with degrees who live in a theoretical world and cannot come to terms with the practical real world concept. I have hired folks like this and been disappointed. I have also hired great people on both sides of the divide. If they can do what you need them to do and they can back it up then they should be given a chance, degree or otherwise.

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I agree

by vawwkayaker In reply to How small minded

I totally agree that a degree does not = more value. In my generalize opinion, degrees are more about the displine of learning. Sure you capture knowledge, but really your purpose is to prepare you for the future, which is continuous learning. Certifications are more about acquiring and mastering specific skills and concepts. Both add value, although one has the potential for broader and long-term benefits, but don't fall into the misconception that a Certificate is a blue-collar trait. I have a non IT degree, IT related certificates, and IT work experience. I use/used each of these at different points in my carrer. Oh yeah . . I can talk and present to management as well, but I did not get that from a degree. I got it from my wife. (i.e. you don't get social skills from studying).


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Skills prevail along with proven track record

by Willy MacWindows In reply to How small minded

I have neither certification or degree, only a long history of quality IT performance. On top of this I have strong interpersonal and communication skills. Meeting the demands of management in preparing white papers and presentations does require some education, however each is attainable through educating yourself in what your clients require.

I guess what I am getting at is that it is the ability of the individual not what is written on a piece of paper - and the confidence to sell it.

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Degree or no degree

by nico In reply to How small minded

I don't think it was perpetuated in the response. It was merely stated that a degree gets you easier through HR and perhaps holds less risk for the hiring manager. If the hiree turns out to be a dud and without a degree, the boss is going to look at your ability to hire. If the mess comes by someone who holds a PhD, chances are everyone would say "bad apple" and move on.

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