What I discovered about majoring in Computer Science

My whole life I have always been exposed to technology. Until college, I had never really thought about taking technology seriously because it has always served as a convenience to me. Now, I see it as a possible career, to work with technology and computers.

When I was younger, I had always thought about being a lawyer or majoring in business. It wasn’t until my siblings started to attend college. I have 4 siblings so you can imagine the variety of majors within my family. I’ll name them for you: music, criminal justice, human resources, and computer science. Yes, my brother majored in computer science which is where I got the idea from. As I was finishing up senior year, my siblings asked me what I was thinking about majoring in. I told them business because that was my original plan. My brother asked me why I wasn’t going to major in computer science, of course he asked as a joke. I told him because I wanted to do business. He then went on to make fun of me because he thought I couldn’t handle a major as hard as computer science. That really struck me. I knew I could do it so I figured, why not try it out.

A couple months went by and I changed my major. I was set to major in computer science. My brother honestly did not believe me. He didn’t think I could do it. I simply told him, “Watch me.”

There aren’t many women majoring in computer science, which is what drives me even more to do it. The biggest controversy in this major is the gender gap. There are already many school finding solutions to this problem. Harvey Mudd College says, “If we make learning and work environments interesting and supportive, if we build confidence and community among women, and if we demystify success, women will come, thrive and stay.” This is the common stance on the controversy, that schools should be encouraging and promoting computer science so that more women are getting involved with the major. Computer science is just one example but the STEM field, in general, has a lower percentage of women.

Along with women, other underrepresented groups such as African-Americans and Hispanics are also not in the STEM fields. This is why I want to major in computer science because I am a Hispanic women and I love computers.

I’m not saying that I’m really good at it and it comes easy to me because that is not the case at all. There will be times where I have no idea what is going on and I don’t want to ask questions because I don’t want to embarrass myself in front of the class. Of course, that doesn’t stop me from figuring it out eventually.

The great thing about this major is that there are plenty of job opportunities after you graduate college. Technology is always advancing and creating more jobs for people. I’m not saying you’ll find a job right away after college but technology has the greatest amount of jobs available. On the contrary, people think that there isn’t jobs because “robots” are taking over our jobs. The first thing my professor said when we walked into class on the first day was, “Computers are stupid. They’re stupid until you tell them what to do. You control the computer.” My professor was completely right. It might be machines that make the physical computer but it is humans who program the computers and fix the them when they’re crashing.

Another controversy is that women are making coding, a language in computer science that makes programs and apps, too “girlie.” For example, there is this team of women who put together a coding program for young girls. The point of this is to encourage females to become intrigued with the area of study. Apparently, some comments have been made about this program, calling it sexist. Some men got offended by this. However, the sole purpose is to get women to want to study computers, and the team of women say, “Why can’t tech be girlie too?”

I agree with them because the issue is that there is a gender gap and we are never going to debug this gender gap unless someone does something about it. I know I am only one person but one person makes a difference when it comes down to statistics. That is why I’m majoring in computer science.

Below you will find the articles I referenced in my post.

https://backchannel.com/at-harvey-mudd-college-the-ratio-of-women-in-cs-increased-from-10-to-40-in-5-years-4bb72e909fbd#.ani3diitg

https://medium.com/jewelbots-weblog/why-i-never-became-a-programmer-b61dec82f98d#.wib2ggc2k