Day in the life of
Software Engineer – Chloe Choe
I currently work in the EdTech space as a software engineer.
My typical day
My typical day consists of daily stand ups, a meeting or two discussing our company’s priorities and how to approach a technological problem, and coding. The software I work on may be anything from the platform that students use to take our MCAT and LSAT courses online to tools that help our company understand what students want in their courses.
Some pros of being a software engineer is that it is a great field to go into if you want to be consistently learning all throughout your life. Many people in this field are extremely bright and you’ll never feel bored on the job. Software engineering is in high demand and an increasingly growing field so there will never be a lack of jobs in the near future. This also leads to higher pay. Software engineering is one of the best paying jobs in the industry, especially when you work for big tech companies such as Facebook, PayPal, Google, etc. You’ll see yourself signing offers with hefty signing bonuses, equity, and annual bonuses on top of your base salary. This industry also comes with plenty of fully remote roles that give the flexibility to travel while on the job.
Some cons may be that you will have to be constantly updating your skills because what was relevant to this industry ten years ago isn’t relevant now. However, I take this as a pro because I love learning! You also may have to be on-call depending on which industry you work in because software is something that has to be up 24/7, 365 days a week. Sometimes you may even have to work on late nights or even weekends to meet deadlines for your stakeholders. Lastly, working in technology may be a stressful occupation because there are many times you will get stuck for days solving a problem, but once you solve that problem you get a huge sense of relief!
Advice for aspiring Software Engineers
You can start prepping for being a software engineer by simply taking the Intro to Programming course at your high school or university. After that, you can choose to major in a STEM field that has a strong programming focus such as Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Data Science, Cyber Security, and more. Most successful software engineers will build their own program or app to showcase their skills in order to secure their first job. This isn’t as scary as it seems! There are plenty of tutorials online on how to build a To-Do List, your own calculator, or a Tic Tac Toe game. Software engineering is also a field you can get into even after you didn’t study a related field in college as there are many places to self study online or take a bootcamp to ramp up your skills.
Before you consider a career in software development, make sure you ask yourself if you’re up for the task. Are you willing to put in the time to constantly learn languages, frameworks, and a variety of new technologies? Software engineering is an ever growing field and I would recommend learning the most up to date technologies and working for companies that have the latest technologies as well in order to sustain your growth. Some examples of this include Golang, React, GraphQL, and Python. I also always keep my brain sharp by studying data structures and algorithms through platforms such as LeetCode, which most companies use to test your software engineering skills while interviewing.
All in all, software engineering is a great field to get into but definitely not an easy one. Put in the time to learn the ropes and try it out!
develop, create, and modify general computer applications software or specialized utility programs. Analyze user needs and develop software solutions. Design software or customize software for client use with the aim of optimizing operational efficiency. May analyze and design databases within an application area, working individually or coordinating database development as part of a team. May supervise computer programmers.