Advice

I have a B.Sc. in Computer Information Systems and 3 years of experience as a consultant, designing windows-based applications in Visual Basic 6 and MS Access 97/2000. I have been trying for a full-time position since I graduated in 2001 June but have not been successful yet. I have tried all avenues including the Internet, networking, company web sites, and agencies. I am a Canadian Citizen living in Toronto who is willing to relocate.

Now I am wondering if I should stay with MS technology or move to Java/Oracle or even if should I switch to hardware/network side? I need advice /leads from the experts. I am even willing to enroll in an internship.

When I face agency interviews, they expect me to have industrial experience. How can I get this experience?

Below is a summary of my skills:
I have experience in developing databases in SQL Server 2000. The reporting tools that I have used are Crystal report 8.5 and Access 2000. I have experience in web development using FrontPage 2000 and Ecbuilder. I have a strong knowledge of Client/Server architecture and OOP concepts.

 I have been involved in all stages of System Development Life Cycle. Much of my work has been on Windows 98, XP, and 2000 operating systems. I have a knowledge of other programming languages like C++, Java, C, HTML, Unix Scripting and PL / SQL.

I have the aptitude to learn new technology quickly. Currently I am self studying VB.NET and ASP.NET. I have good analytical and problem solving skills. I have over five years experience in sales/customer service.


vjayAsked:
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Arthur_WoodCommented:
place your resume and other particulars on sites such as Monster.Com or HotJobs.com

http://www.monster.com

http://hotjobs.yahoo.com/


your credentials appear to be very strong, so I would suggest that you stop using local agencies, who apparently have not got a clue about the IT inductry.

AW
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vjayAuthor Commented:

I have posted my resume in most of the job sites.
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incongruentCommented:
From my experience,  the future of programming is not VB.  If you want to stay employed in a constantly transitioning environment you have to stay current.  I learned VB and its great for programming.  Its easy to use, easy to learn, and easy to implement.  The biggest problem with those characteristics is that anyone can learn this language.  So with the IT industry begginging to flood,  you have to have skills that are more acute than VB and MS Access.  

Java is a valuable language to learn,  and if you learn java then you can carry some of that knowledge over to C+ which is still relevant in programming today (although less emphasized in today's post secondary learning).  The risk of java is that Microsoft would very much like for JAVA to become extinct.  They stopped providing Java run time environments and are marketting .NET to replace it.  We don't know what direction this will head, but its something to keep in mind.  ORACLE is the most popular database software I'd say, so I suggest you learn a bit about it.  Fundamentally SQL/DDL is the most important thing to know about databases and if you learn real SQL/DDL (not MS Access' butchered version of SQL) then you can apply most of it to any language.  Every DB software has its own specific stuff though.  

Most importantly,  dont line up your career path to be stuck programming until you retire.  Make sure you keep taking classes and get a degree so you can move up to BSA, Project Manager, or the like.  Programming is great but you'll get carpal tunnel before you retire. =)


Besides,  programmers will be extinct as soon as someone develops a program that programs automatically.  (you know its comming)....


-Allan

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Arthur_WoodCommented:
while I agree with *most* of the comments, I strongly *disagree* on two points:

1)"Programming is great but you'll get carpal tunnel before you retire. =)" - I have been programming, professionally, for almost 25 years, and have no signs of carpal tunnel, and plan to stay a programmer until I retire - now age 59, and learned to program, in FORTRAN, in 1962 ( have programmed in almost every major language platform, though I have great difficulty spelling COBOL ;->).  I do NOT enjoy 'Management', and have absolutely no desire to move into the 'management track'.

2) while Java is a possible direction to move, I would *strongly* suggest looking at the *entire* .NET platform.  With a background in VB 6, VB.NET is not a *huge* shift, though there arte *significant* differences, so you cannot build VB.NET apps using the same basic 'paradigm' that you may have used with VB 6.

AW
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incongruentCommented:
I was kidding about the carpal tunnel, Arthur.  

It is true,  Management is a tough place because you become the scape goat as well as risk losing plenty of co-worker friendships.  However,  the other options such as Business Systems Analyst and the like offer less hardships and more of a chance to work with systems at a high level.  I prefer a BSA role to programming but they both have their qualities.


My adement anti-microsoft agenda has some bearing on my advice.  I don't intend for anyone to boycot microsoft or to stop using Microsoft products all together.  I just think there is value in promoting competitors to the company and its products/languages.   As a programmer,  I find its best to work with many different languages.  Its okay to specialize in one language, ie. .NET or JAVA.  But the best bet is to be fluent in the major ones.  It says a lot to a prospective employer about your range.  

-Allan
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Arthur_WoodCommented:
Allan, besides, the key-pounding is where the FUN is.  I love the rush when I get the electons to go where I told them to go.

As for the flexibility of knowing LOTS of languages, I can't agree more.  But like I said, I have difficuylty spelling COBOL, if you get my drift.  But that probably comes from the fact that I have a BS in Physics, and a PhD in Astronomy.

I have programmed at all levels from SUROM code in an embedded microprocessor, to major code that ran in a CYBER, so I agree about the range.

AW
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vinay_13Commented:
    From summary of your skills you have provided, I can see that you have a good aptitude for MS-based technologies. I wouldn't suggest moving to Java and Oracle. True, Java is getting increasingly popular. But if you pay more attention to .net, you will see that it has a greater potential than what it has been given credit for. I suggest you increase your skills in this area, especially since you have a great deal of experience with Windows 98, 2000, and XP.

-Vinay
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vjayAuthor Commented:
Hi everyone,

Thank you very much for your advice Finally I have decided to stick with vb.net. At the present time I am working as helpdesk rep. So I am doing something. Still I love to get into a programming(junior/intern) . Let's hope for the best.

Hi Admin,
Please close the question and split the points.

Thanks
Vijay
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Arthur_WoodCommented:
vjay, it is YOUR responsibility to 'accept' an answer and then split the points.  That is not the job of the Page Admin.

AW
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vjayAuthor Commented:
hi admin,
i did not say that it is your job to split the points;when I opened this page yesterday the accept option was not available for some reason.

bye

vjay
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