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Java Career advice, please!!!!!!

 
Dave Johnson
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Hello all, I am asking for some good advice to hopefully help me, help myself kickstart my career as a programmer.
I am 33 years old and live in the North of England. I have been studying with Computeach over the last 2 years as a Java programmer. I took the programmer's exam recently, unfortunately I just missed the grade (57%). Besides Java I have used C++, Pascal, Javascript, Basic, HTML, Flash etc. I have no preconceptions as what area of programming I want to go into, Web design is the area that I have used my programming skills so far.
At the present time the company I am working with are asking for voluntary redundancies which I am seriously considering taking. I am quite happy to leave my current & quite well paid job, to work for as little as the minimum wage in order to get myself some well needed experience.
If any of you have any advice, know of any contacts or URL's that I should approach please, please, please tell me.
I am an honest, hardworking & self-motivated team-player looking for a break and in return give some kind-hearted employer some damned good work. Thanks, Dave Johnson.
big.red@blueyonder.co.uk
 
Mark Herschberg
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My $.02 is that this isn't the best time to get started in a career in programming. I'd hold on to your job and wait a year or so. Also, web development strikes me as the area of software development most oversubscribed. It had a big boom as companies all moved onto the web. While web presense is here to stay, it won't continue to grow at the same pace (not unless some third wolrd nationals get wired up real quick).
--Mark
 
Billy Tsai
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go get a phD
 
Matt Cao
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Hi Dave,
Honestly, you hit mid-life crisis man.
I tend to agree with Mark staying with your day job for now and take on Web Design as side income job.
First, create a personal page and uses it to attract your friends, associates, or whomever you met on streets of England. You may never know what kind of niche market will open up for you. I don't know about UK, but in US there are plenty of niche markets because it is a diversify country.
Second, after you have clients, then think about certs. Certs reinforce in your potential clients mind that you know what are you doing.
Third, buy yourself a UK lottery ticket. If you win please remember me, I don't ask for much. 10% is all I asked.
Cheers,
MCao
 
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