I spent $110,000 on grad school, only to realize that the free online resources were actually…

First off, let me start by saying that it’s great you’ve found something you love and, and even better, that you can learn it for free. That is genuinely fantastic. However, I think it’s really important to point out that your equating computer science with programming, which is simply not a valid comparison. It’s true that there is a wealth of knowledge and free resources for learning programming out there, but that’s all you’re learning, programming. You’re not learning computer science, of which programming is only a part. And while it is possible to teach yourself programming and then successfully get a job, teaching yourself computer science is significantly more challenging. It is at the level of teaching yourself mathematics like linear algebra, doable, but very difficult.

That’s not to say there is anything wrong with just learning to program, there isn’t. But it does not make you a computer scientist.

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