View Poll Results: What should I do?

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  • Take the job offer! Show me the money!

    7 30.43%
  • Take the job offer and work it for 1 to 2 years. Then go to grad school.

    10 43.48%
  • No money? Ha, I can take it. Bring it on, world. Plow through and go to grad school now!

    2 8.70%
  • Become a combination African Safari master / archaeologist who programs C in his spare time.

    4 17.39%

I have 10 days to make the biggest decision of my life

This is a discussion on I have 10 days to make the biggest decision of my life within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; Hopefully the title caught your attention In essence it's true: I have 10 days to make the most important decision ...

  1. #1
    l'Anziano DavidP's Avatar
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    Question I have 10 days to make the biggest decision of my life

    Hopefully the title caught your attention

    In essence it's true: I have 10 days to make the most important decision of my life (at least up until this point in my life).

    The choices:

    (1) Accept a job offer from the company with which I interned over the summer. The pay is very competitive and there are excellent benefits. The job would move me to a city which I really enjoyed living in, and I have many good friends there. The job itself would allow me to do software development. It would be fun, and I would be working with great people, but it might not let me pursue my dream directly.

    (2) Reject the job offer and hope that I get accepted to graduate school (currently planning on doing a Masters in Computer Science). The schools to which I am currently applying are: BYU, University of Texas at Austin, Texas Tech. Other schools which I am considering include: Texas A&M and University of Utah. The school in which I am most interested in is: BYU. The reason I say hope that I get into grad school is because there is no way I can get acceptance/rejection letters from these institutions within the next 10 days (my job offer expires on December 1st). Doing grad school would certainly put at a lower economic situation (for about 3 years or so), but I would have a higher chance of directly pursuing my dream. Also...let's face it...there's more cute and marriageable girls on a college campus than in a workplace

    Well....let me know what you think.
    My Website

    "Circular logic is good because it is."

  2. #2
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    As possibly your only fellow BYU-student who's active on this site - may I offer one piece of advice? Don't marry a girl you meet at BYU. That is soo cliche. And most certainly do not propose on Temple Square.

    Honestly - if I was you, I would take the job. Where is the town anyway? You could always come back to graduate school after a few years - I would think it makes you much more attractive to grad-school recruiters. You could save up some money for school, pursue some other self-education interests - if that's your thing.

    Perhaps a few details on your real dream might help us offer advice on how best to get there...

  3. #3
    l'Anziano DavidP's Avatar
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    Well the "real dream" just includes a desire to really help out the world for good in a significant way.

    I figure if I go to grad school and do research I would have a better chance at that than if I went into the work force. There are 2 main things I am interested in researching:

    (1) Artificial intelligence and robotics. Cool stuff.
    (2) Bioinformatics. More specifically: researching the signal running through the optical nerve and figure out how the data is being sent from the eye to the brain.
    My Website

    "Circular logic is good because it is."

  4. #4
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    i think you're probably a rare breed...everyone at my school was sick of it (myself included) and just wanted to get out there and work.

    as with any question like this, it's hard for anyone to give you any suggestion because we're not you. for example, i'd take the job in a heartbeat because i just hate the thought of going back to school, and hate the thought of having student loans again even more.

    anyways, i think taking the job and reevaluating is best, because you have a sure-thing of the job, but it's not a sure thing you're accepted to the schools.

  5. #5
    Hail to the king, baby. Akkernight's Avatar
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    The job then school But if you want more to go to school and have good luck, then go to school :P
    But, unless you expect to die soon, I'd say the job then school is the right choice
    Currently research OpenGL

  6. #6
    Cat without Hat CornedBee's Avatar
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    there's more cute and marriageable girls on a college campus than in a workplace
    Your sex appeal is higher if you're a "working man"

    I don't know how it works over the pond, but where I live work contracts typically have an initial "trial time". Within this time (typically two months) either side may terminate the contract without warning or reason. So I'd say take the job, and if you get an acceptance within two months, you can still bail out if you really want to.




    Meanwhile, I'm over here, laughing at you with my fun part-time job right next to university
    All the buzzt!
    CornedBee

    "There is not now, nor has there ever been, nor will there ever be, any programming language in which it is the least bit difficult to write bad code."
    - Flon's Law

  7. #7
    Devil's Advocate SlyMaelstrom's Avatar
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    I selected the first answer, however, I'm kind of in between the first and second answer... I just didn't like how the second answer was worded. Going to work for one or two years and then quitting to go to grad school does not sound like a great idea. Secondly, I know many people that pursue their Masters at very good schools while working. It just takes significantly longer (probably 6 years or so to get the Masters) but it's worth it if you can manage the busy life style. Now only will you have a Masters degree, but you'll have much more work experience under your belt and you'll probably be getting paid much better with better benefits than you were four years earlier. On top of all that, there is a good chance that any company you work for will subsidize your school costs while you're working there. The only negative is the restriction that you'll have to go to school somewhere near where you work.

    To your other point... I think you should probably hold off on the "marriageable girls" while your trying to juggle school and work. You're young... and from what I've experience with women, for short term relationships they're more interested in a guy with a Bachelors and a great job than a guy pursuing his Masters.
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  8. #8
    Woof, woof! zacs7's Avatar
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    Can you do both?

    ie, take the job and do your masters part time?

  9. #9
    l'Anziano DavidP's Avatar
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    I've thought about doing the Master's degree part time, and in fact the company does have a program for tuition reimbursement. However, if I do a Master's degree I would rather do it full time. I don't want to have to worry about a full time job and school at the same time.

    I wouldn't mind as much, however, full time school and a part time job (heck i am doing that right now as it is).

    Just the idea of night classes doesn't appeal to me too much, especially after a long day of work when I know I will be wanting to go home and do some other activities.

    That's why I chose to say either grad school now, grad school after 1-2 years of work, or no grad school.
    My Website

    "Circular logic is good because it is."

  10. #10
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    I think you should decline the job offer.

    If you feel you are a good programmer that can get a job somewhere if you really need to, then it's ok not to take this good opportunity now.

    If you get accepted to grad school then great! Chances are when you are done you will have a similar ability to get a good job as you do now.

    If you don't get accepted, is there a possibility your company will want to hire you even though you declined the initial offer? When you decline, I'd say that it's an excellent opportunity but you're planning on going to graduate school so you have to decline. If grad school doesn't work out (or even if it does) you can always go back and say that you are looking for work again and if they still want you you'd be interested in applying again (or accepting).

    I just feel like there will always be jobs if you're good at what you do, but if you start working it will be harder to go back to school and follow your "dream".

    Either choice will be a good one, so whatever you do don't have any regrets.

  11. #11
    Woof, woof! zacs7's Avatar
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    If the contract doesn't specify you have to stay there...

    Take the job, if you get into grad school then quit :-). Although that probably means you won't be able to use them on your CV... they'll probably hate you.

  12. #12
    Devil's Advocate SlyMaelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zacs7 View Post
    If the contract doesn't specify you have to stay there...

    Take the job, if you get into grad school then quit :-). Although that probably means you won't be able to use them on your CV... they'll probably hate you.
    Where do you people work that quitting for school or another job automatically makes them "hate you?" This is the second time I've read this concept on a thread in this forum and I find it ridiculous. People leave jobs all the time to better themselves either with a better job or school. It's not offensive to the employer and any sensible manager would wish you the best and certainly give you a good recommendation if you did good work for them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daved View Post
    I just feel like there will always be jobs if you're good at what you do,
    That's unfortunately not always the case. With the job market becoming more and more international, it has been becoming increasingly competitive. Not in the aspect of skill, either, but the aspect of how cheap one is willing to perform their skill. The simple fact that we live in a country where the cost of living is double or triple that of a rival nation with just as competent employees puts us at a disadvantage. Certainly there is a level of skill which will always get you a job... but how confident can you ask someone to be that they can believe they're better than a large majority of the market? Also, how far are companies willing to sacrifice efficiency in order to save money? These days a very good job offer is a tough thing to pass up... especially in the Computer Science field.

    Now... David was somewhat vague on how good of an opportunity this job is. I believe, however, if he thinks he has a great potential for advancement and making contacts, then grad school can be pushed off until he feels comfortable with his schedule.

    That's just my two cents.
    Last edited by SlyMaelstrom; 11-19-2008 at 06:21 PM.
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  13. #13
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    Where do you people work that quitting for school or another job automatically makes them "hate you?"
    In most cases, I agree - but I believe they were suggesting that he accept the job just to make the deadline, and then change his mind as soon as he gets accepted to grad school. Which is basically forcing them to extend the deadline, and making them tell any other prospective employees, "we have already hired someone". If he hadn't interned for them, and depending on the timing - they may also invest in training him, only to lose him.

    edit: basically - if I was the company - I'd be annoyed if you interfered with other hiring decisions, or if you wasted our time. Whether or not that plan might actually do that - I don't know.

  14. #14
    Devil's Advocate SlyMaelstrom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sean View Post
    In most cases, I agree - but I believe they were suggesting that he accept the job just to make the deadline, and then change his mind as soon as he gets accepted to grad school. Which is basically forcing them to extend the deadline, and making them tell any other prospective employees, "we have already hired someone". If he hadn't interned for them, and depending on the timing - they may also invest in training him, only to lose him.

    edit: basically - if I was the company - I'd be annoyed if you interfered with other hiring decisions, or if you wasted our time. Whether or not that plan might actually do that - I don't know.
    I agree with that. I suppose that was implied in this case, I just took it a bit stronger being the second time I've seen it suggested.
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  15. #15
    Banned master5001's Avatar
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    Become a combination African Safari master / archaeologist who programs C in his spare time.
    Do not tempt fate and give me such options. Take the job my friend. A job is more important than school in many ways. I do not have a degree in either CS or IT and have done both during my career (and am now in school to become a psychiatrist--go figure).

    So in my humble experience, work experience is exponentially more important.

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