Was studying worth it?

I have a Bachelor of Civil Engineering and a Master of Structural Engineering. I decided to work as a software engineer. So, was it worth studying for six years?

Unfortunately, I don’t have a definite answer to this question and here are my four reasons why:

  1. The master’s degree was extremely challenging for me. As a result I got used to studying many hours a week. I actually thought I was going to fail and have to quit before the first semester was over but I decided to push through it and ended up doing ok. Every semester after that was much better than the one before and I ended up doing really well. This noticeable improvement allowed me to gain confidence in my own abilities.
  1. I can hardly remember what I did in my bachelor’s degree. I remember having a rule that I would never study past 5pm and never on weekends. What did I do with all that free time!? I remember having a lot of fun during that time and I definitely was able to gain some life experience and meet people who will always be a part of my life.
  1. Studying not only taught me how to learn but it also taught me how not to learn. A lot of what I studied was too abstract. I couldn’t really apply what I was learning. Teaching myself software development has been much more effective because I can apply what I learn straight away, which never really happened as a structural Engineer.
  1. A degree is an official proof that you can accomplish something and the results you achieve are somewhat objective. It gives you a sense of credibility, which is important when applying for a job.

As you can see, I can’t really decide if studying was worth it. It definitely wasn’t a waste of time but I still don’t feel it was a very effective use of my time. I will always wonder if I could have gained similar life experiences doing something else in a shorter period. It’s also interesting to speculate what would have been had I studied computer science instead…

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8 thoughts on “Was studying worth it?

  1. I’m also doing my under grad in civil engineering and still don’t have enough interest but still believe that I should learn CS and somewhere implement this in Civil field. By your story taking that as a base I’m also feeling the same that you did few years back but have a great dream to build a firm irrespective of the field. Please guide me with your schedule how long did it take to learn all those language and how many hours a day. How did you made this page? Your writing habit n all that.
    I would be really tankful.

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    1. Hi Manish,

      Thank you for your interest in my blog. I made the blog with WordPress and I try to spend at least an hour a month on writing new content, which ends up being about one post per month. English is my native language and it took me about a year to learn enough German to be fluent.

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      1. Actually I was asking for your journey from Civil to CS. I am feeling the same way as u did. How much time did u spend in learning those programming courses?

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      2. I see :D. After completing my master’s degree I spent about three months learning about Computer Science before starting an internship as a Software Engineer. Since then I have continued to learn about Software Development with a focus on Java and Android. I spend about 30 hours a week on it, not including what I do at work.

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      3. I am just in my 2nd year. 10 hours a week that too for 1 year would it be enough?Or how much should I spend before getting into the placements round of the final year so that I could land in a software company during the placements.
        With full dedication!!

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  2. Hay David ! How old are you ? Where do you live ? You story is interesting and a bit similar to mine. However, other than you, my bachelor was concluded in a much distinct area from Computer Science. I graduated at Law School and worked as a lawyer for over 4 years before accepting that this was not me, and that I was sufocating day after day. I’ve now turned to my real passion that is technology and CS. Therefore, I’m self-taughting programming and just begun a CS bachelor. Thanks for your postings!

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