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Your advice for a high school student

By gabbar follow gabbar   2021 May 19, 4:35am 917 views   63 comments   watch   nsfw   quote   share      


There are many astute patrick netters. So, seeking your recommendations for a high school student getting ready to apply for colleges.
The student in Ohio
1. Perfect ACT score
2. Excellent GPA
3. Likes STEM, loves math, chemistry, programming.
4. Has 9 months of research work experience at a university. Volunteer experience
5. One technical publication in a national journal
6. Hoping to keep undergraduate costs to 100k since student is likely to pursue graduate school.
Thank you.

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24   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 12:08pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Shaman says
I don’t think the value of an engineering degree can be overstated. No matter what the future brings, people who understand how technology works are going to be valuable and usually in short supply.


Prof Cal Newport says that the major should be rare and valuable.
25   WookieMan   ignore (5)   2021 May 19, 2:36pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Rb6d says
Zak says
I highly recommend the community college + transfer + work during, even though GPA will likely suffer.


Community college should be taken only in subjects unrelated to major. In my classes, 60-80% of students who took prerequisites at community colleges fail as they pass anyone with a pulse, no learning required.

Neighbors and friends are both CC professors. I'd agree with your sentiment. Put it this way, I wouldn't want them teaching my kids even though I respect them. Both are English professors which is a completely fungible subject, so my view is biased to some extent as English really shouldn't even be a subject at the collegiate level. You should be reading and writing by 10-12, or at least putting ideas down. No need when you're 18-20 to be taking English classes.
26   EBGuy   ignore (1)   2021 May 19, 2:41pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

gabbar says
The student in Ohio

Step 1: Get the jab
Ohio will give away $1 million prizes to five adults, plus another five full-ride public college scholarships to teens who get vaccinated against COVID-19, Gov. Mike DeWine announced on Wednesday
27   Bd6r   ignore (1)   2021 May 19, 3:02pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WookieMan says
Neighbors and friends are both CC professors. I'd agree with your sentiment. Put it this way, I wouldn't want them teaching my kids even though I respect them. Both are English professors which is a completely fungible subject, so my view is biased to some extent as English really shouldn't even be a subject at the collegiate level.

Community college profs are evaluated on basis of student evaluations. Students are happy if they are passed without having to learn, and administration is happy if students are happy...it is easy to conclude what are the results.
28   AmericanKulak   ignore (1)   2021 May 19, 3:24pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

#1 Stay away from Anime.
29   rocketjoe79   ignore (1)   2021 May 19, 3:28pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Go to work for Elon Musk. Musk thinks experiential learning is more important than most book learning. If you're an autodidact, SpaceX could be the right place now. And who knows? You might get on one of the first trips to Mars! What an adventure!!
30   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 3:55pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

EBGuy says
gabbar says
The student in Ohio

Step 1: Get the jab
Ohio will give away $1 million prizes to five adults, plus another five full-ride public college scholarships to teens who get vaccinated against COVID-19, Gov. Mike DeWine announced on Wednesday


Registered the student for the public college scholarship lottery
31   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 3:56pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Ceffer says
There is always the temptation when mentoring to go all fake sanctimonious about hard work and merit.

Sociologists did a study, and they found that young people didn't listen to OldFucks, they took their cues from their often idiotically short sighted, hyperactive, and misguided peers, so anything an OldFuck tells a YoungFuck will have limited effect.

Unfortunately, my advice would be find a way to work a good con exploiting the insane, hypocritical bureaucratic idiocies and inconsistencies of the system. Learn to ride the wave.

It may be amoral, but more realistic and politic as a path to some sort of ragged success and self perpetuation.


Are you referring to The Nurture Assumption by Judith Rich Harris?
32   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 3:59pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Zak says
100% agree that 100k is too much. I highly recommend the community college + transfer + work during, even though GPA will likely suffer. I've never had a job interviewer ask me my GPA. And although California is nice, remember the in-state vs out of state tuition rates are quite different. I was too poor to do it, but if a parent can help, it sure seems like a semester abroad would also be an amazing experience.

Drinking/partying is also a huge part of the college experience. Rather than trying to shelter your kids from all forms of underage drinking, I'd actually encourage you to have some home (family only) parties where drinking is allowed. You can teach and monitor on how to pace yourself, how to recognize when you're too drunk (and may be getting drunker despite stopping drinking), how to recognize when a friend is getting too drunk, etc. Also, maybe a fun, but instructive way of experiencing how judgement can be impaired.

Basically, my hope for my kids is not that ...


Yeah, I remember a few crazy things I did as a student in Louisiana
33   Zak   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 6:25pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
You can never go wrong pursuing what you love.


Oh how wrong you are. You can absolutely go wrong pursuing what you love. Especially if what you love is economically stupid. This is why hobbies are a thing, and there are a ton of actors and actresses who happen to have. aside barista job(or worse).
34   Zak   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 6:29pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WookieMan says
You should be reading and writing by 10-12, or at least putting ideas down. No need when you're 18-20 to be taking English classes.


I agree here 100%. Non-major curriculum only at community college. This can be a bit hard when there is a linear dependency for a lot of the math classes for physics and engineering for example. Community college might not be the best place to try to learn differential equations or linear algebra.
35   richwicks   ignore (2)   2021 May 19, 6:38pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WookieMan says
richwicks says
He (or she)

Actually he/she does matter. Specifically for women. Degrees matter much less besides getting into the building/employer so to speak because you have a piece of paper.


I disagree.

Women can use a lot of things to their advantage, but when they do, they use it to their long term detriment.

You know what I've spent my life doing? What I enjoy. I happen to make a lot of money doing it, but I've also at times done stuff I hate - to such a degree I've woken up wishing I was dead rather than return to a job. I've taken paycuts to do things I enjoy, and I've quit jobs over principle. I certainly do not regret that at all.

The worst times in my life, were when I was making more money than I ever expected making, doing a job I was deeply conflicted about doing.

Better do a job you can like, but if the kid is a female, you have to marry up with. I understand that as well. From a strictly male perspective, I strongly suggest doing something you don't hate. Sure you might be making a shit ton of money, but I hated everything about my life except small aspects of it when I did it. There's companies I never want to work for again because the job was either too worthless, or the company was just too unethical. It's just misery to spend more than a 1/3rd of your time doing something you hate - when the other 1/3rd of your time is sleeping.
36   richwicks   ignore (2)   2021 May 19, 6:42pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Zak says
WookieMan says
You should be reading and writing by 10-12, or at least putting ideas down. No need when you're 18-20 to be taking English classes.


I agree here 100%. Non-major curriculum only at community college. This can be a bit hard when there is a linear dependency for a lot of the math classes for physics and engineering for example. Community college might not be the best place to try to learn differential equations or linear algebra.


This is true. Do what you love as a hobby, unless it makes money and it likely does not.

I really enjoy studying propaganda and history. Sure glad I didn't major in either of those, either I'd be a psychologist making propaganda to lie to the public, or working at Starbucks serving you coffee.
37   richwicks   ignore (2)   2021 May 19, 6:45pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Zak says
Community college might not be the best place to try to learn differential equations or linear algebra.


Both of those are pretty easy to learn online.

I loved linear algebra. It's just matrices.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggWYkes-n6E
38   mostly reader   ignore (0)   2021 May 19, 9:15pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

gabbar says
Which engineering branches, hard sciences and premed tracks are worth it? Which branch of computer science, electronics or communication engineering are worth it in the long run? Will try our best to avoid debt.
As far as Computer Science, it almost doesn't matter which branch it is because everything changes so fast.

Math, however, is apparently making a comeback in CS. In addition to Boolean Algebra and Logic, which is kinda obvious, there's now much greater emphasis on Linear Algebra and Statistics because both are foundation for Machine Learning. Even Category Theory, which is a bit on the abstract side, is no longer unheard of in CS culture due to it's influence on Functional Programming.

Edit: I know some very high profile people who are quite sceptical about Machine Learning. Even in the areas in which it actually produces decent results. That's today though. We are talking about some years from now, plus entire career if that career is in CS. It seems obvious to me that ML will be biting off bigger and bigger pieces of the figurative pie, so getting proper background in that area seems like a reasonable bet.
39   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 12:34am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

mostly reader says
gabbar says
Which engineering branches, hard sciences and premed tracks are worth it? Which branch of computer science, electronics or communication engineering are worth it in the long run? Will try our best to avoid debt.
As far as Computer Science, it almost doesn't matter which branch it is because everything changes so fast.

Math, however, is apparently making a comeback in CS. In addition to Boolean Algebra and Logic, which is kinda obvious, there's now much greater emphasis on Linear Algebra and Statistics because both are foundation for Machine Learning. Even Category Theory, which is a bit on the abstract side, is no longer unheard of in CS culture due to it's influence on Functional Programming.

Edit: I know some very high profile people who are quite sceptical about Machine Learning. Even in the areas in which it actually produces decent results. That's today though. We are tal...


Good news is student received an award in Math yesterday. What concerns me about computer science is the export of jobs to other countries and import of IT workers through work visa. But this is where all the growth seems to be. Any thoughts about Systems Architecture or becoming a Chief Technology Officer for a major corporation or Network engineering? There is a new major called Healthcare Engineering too.
40   WineHorror1   ignore (1)   2021 May 20, 5:29am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Personally, I believe America is in dire need of entrepreneurs. Choose a field that will help achieve self employment. One of America's biggest problems is centralized industry. With fewer choices, Americans are more easily herded. If the 2 grocery conglomerates in my area (Giant and Safeway) decide to mask their customers forever, I have little other choices.
41   KgK one   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 7:05am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Jobs n major that fit your personality are better.

Straight high $ and job growth

Pre med , healthcare
compsci
Some enginerring computer , electrical n Chem E

Shane has best vids on career
https://youtu.be/ajfDWlU138Y
42   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 8:13am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WineHorror1 says
Personally, I believe America is in dire need of entrepreneurs. Choose a field that will help achieve self employment. One of America's biggest problems is centralized industry. With fewer choices, Americans are more easily herded. If the 2 grocery conglomerates in my area (Giant and Safeway) decide to mask their customers forever, I have little other choices.


Thinking about starting a LLC for the student
43   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 8:14am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

KgK one says
Jobs n major that fit your personality are better.

Straight high $ and job growth

Pre med , healthcare
compsci
Some enginerring computer , electrical n Chem E

Shane has best vids on career
https://youtu.be/ajfDWlU138Y


I will check out Shane Hummus's video.
44   zzyzzx   ignore (1)   2021 May 20, 8:14am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WineHorror1 says
If the 2 grocery conglomerates in my area (Giant and Safeway) decide to mask their customers forever, I have little other choices.


No WalMart, Aldi, or Target? All are maskless if you identify as vaxxed. I only go to Giant or Safeway to buy items that are on sale.
45   Fortwaynemobile   ignore (3)   2021 May 20, 8:25am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

zzyzzx says
Identify as a lesbian black woman for the purposes of college admissions and employment.


Add trans in there somewhere, it’s the latest crave by leftists.
46   Fortwaynemobile   ignore (3)   2021 May 20, 8:27am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Degree is for getting a job in various sectors that require it. If you aren’t going to top school to network with elites, then go to cheap one.
47   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 8:49am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Fortwaynemobile says
Degree is for getting a job in various sectors that require it. If you aren’t going to top school to network with elites, then go to cheap one.


My understanding is that at top schools, the rich hobnob with the rich outside the school in clubs; the poor are not invited.
48   mostly reader   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 1:09pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

gabbar says
Any thoughts about Systems Architecture or becoming a Chief Technology Officer for a major corporation or Network engineering? There is a new major called Healthcare Engineering too.
Being a CTO is a good life for a bright person. Good CTO is hard to replace, while they have less stress than, say, VP of Eng. It's also true for anything "Architect"
IMHO, Network Engineer is harder as a lifestyle. Infinite hours in a lab, lots of low level details, repetitive work. I've known some super bright people who were/are Network Engineers, but - imho, yet again - a less bright person could also be a successful one if they are willing to bite the bullet and keep biting it for years. I'm not sure about NE as a career path because there's a strong push in the industry to solve those problems on a different level, and that skill set is becoming somewhat of a commodity. Network Architects are a different story; that career usually involves spending time as NE and biting lots of those proverbial bullets.
Can't comment on Healthcare Engineering, don't know much about it.

In terms of small steps, I'd say that it almost doesn't matter at this point. What does matter is that the person also develops social engineering and communication skills if they are not born with them. All top level positions demand that, and it's not something that someone without predisposition can learn overnight.
49   HunterTits   ignore (4)   2021 May 20, 1:12pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

My advice: Get laid as often as you can
50   Ceffer   ignore (6)   2021 May 20, 1:18pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Delayed gratification sucks.
51   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 2:03pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

mostly reader says
gabbar says
Any thoughts about Systems Architecture or becoming a Chief Technology Officer for a major corporation or Network engineering? There is a new major called Healthcare Engineering too.
Being a CTO is a good life for a bright person. Good CTO is hard to replace, while they have less stress than, say, VP of Eng. It's also true for anything "Architect".
IMHO, Network Engineer is harder as a lifestyle. Infinite hours in a lab, lots of low level details, repetitive work. I've known some super bright people who were/are Network Engineers, but - imho, yet again - a less bright person could also be a successful one if they are willing to bite the bullet and keep biting it for years. I'm not sure about NE as a career path because there's a strong push in the industry to solve those problems on a different level, and that skill set is becoming somewhat of a commodity. Network Architects are a differe...


What are the steps necessary to reach the level of CTO?

I copied your reference regarding social engineering and communication skills to serve as a reminder for the student, thank you very much.
52   mostly reader   ignore (0)   2021 May 20, 2:15pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

gabbar says
What are the steps necessary to reach the level of CTO?
I edited my prior post, removed that edit and now posting it here because it sorta gives a direction to answering your question (admittedly without answering it).

-- start
Apart from focusing on technical side (in general) and on communication (in general), I'd keep it open and not split hairs. Birds eye point of view is good enough. Changing tack is normal, some lucrative corporate careers aren't even taught in colleges. Product Management is one example. College can teach CS (as a general concept) or Math (as a general concept), or Biology (same). But Product Management requires little reusable skill, yet a lot of industry-specific knowledge, so how do you teach that? Product Managers, BusDev, HiTech Sales - these kinds may emerge from other specialties. You kid may surprise you.
-- end

As for your specific question - "how to become a CTO" - I don't know if there is a recipe. We are talking about decades of personal and professional development in which next step depends on the lessons learned in the step before that. Some thoughts come to mind but they can't be a guidance because they are too open-ended.
53   WineHorror1   ignore (1)   2021 May 21, 3:05am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

zzyzzx says
WineHorror1 says
If the 2 grocery conglomerates in my area (Giant and Safeway) decide to mask their customers forever, I have little other choices.


No WalMart, Aldi, or Target? All are maskless if you identify as vaxxed. I only go to Giant or Safeway to buy items that are on sale.

You're right. I'm just looking to take out my anger about masking on the grocery stores near me. Funny thing is, I haven't worn a mask even once in a grocery store (self checkout). I still think America would be much better off with more independently owned businesses of all types. Government loves big business and supports them over every other business. Why? Because it's much easier to control them.
54   PeopleUnited   ignore (1)   2021 May 21, 4:51am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

WineHorror1 says
Government loves big business and supports them over every other business. Why? Because it's much easier to control them.


Aren’t you saying it backwards?

Big businesses love big government because that way they can write laws to favor big business. Also since money rules politics, big businesses have more lobbyists and exert more force with getting their way with politicians than small businesses.
55   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 21, 4:53am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Zak says
NuttBoxer says
You can never go wrong pursuing what you love.


Oh how wrong you are. You can absolutely go wrong pursuing what you love. Especially if what you love is economically stupid. This is why hobbies are a thing, and there are a ton of actors and actresses who happen to have. aside barista job(or worse).


We are not rich people, so it is important for us to pursue a major that has a high probability of a stable job. Kid love playing piano and is good at it but people don't pay for this skill. So student will likely pursue a skill for which employers are willing to pay well.
56   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 21, 4:57am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

mostly reader says
gabbar says
What are the steps necessary to reach the level of CTO?
I edited my prior post, removed that edit and now posting it here because it sorta gives a direction to answering your question (admittedly without answering it).

-- start
Apart from focusing on technical side (in general) and on communication (in general), I'd keep it open and not split hairs. Birds eye point of view is good enough. Changing tack is normal, some lucrative corporate careers aren't even taught in colleges. Product Management is one example. College can teach CS (as a general concept) or Math (as a general concept), or Biology (same). But Product Management requires little reusable skill, yet a lot of industry-specific knowledge, so how do you teach that? Product Managers, BusDev, HiTech Sales - these kinds may emerge from other specialties. You kid may surprise you.
-- end

As for your specific ques...


A cousin is an engineer and sells for Cisco, I never thought that she had that in her. And you are right, a birds eye view is good enough, at 17 years. Thanks for the very helpful comments. I appreciate it.
58   Patrick   ignore (1)   2021 May 22, 2:54pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/372/6544/874

The problem with ‘follow your dream’

Finally, I went to my adviser for help. We hadn't talked much about my career plans over the years, but I felt I needed a new perspective from someone who knew me well. When he offered his advice, I was taken aback at first. What happened to “if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life”? My adviser assured me there is seldom such a job. Every job has its ugly bits. But as long as you're happy most of the time, you can struggle through the parts you don't like. He also said it was important to find a job I was good at, especially because my visa applications required me to make the case that I would benefit the country.
59   Shaman   ignore (2)   2021 May 22, 3:51pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Just as a FYI... my apprentice is a 21 year old, went to community college to learn welding and electronic control and PLCs (and a few other classes), then got a job doing relevant work. Finally he was ready to apply to be an apprentice. He’s making $32/hour and in four years he will be skilled and knowledgeable in a very lucrative and in-demand trade that makes minimum $150k/year with benefits most people never see. The job is difficult and dangerous and often dirty, but he has zero college debt and he will be making more than most engineers when he’s a journeyman.
60   HunterTits   ignore (4)   2021 May 23, 11:38pm     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Shaman says
Just as a FYI... my apprentice is a 21 year old, went to community college to learn welding and electronic control and PLCs (and a few other classes), then got a job doing relevant work. Finally he was ready to apply to be an apprentice. He’s making $32/hour and in four years he will be skilled and knowledgeable in a very lucrative and in-demand trade that makes minimum $150k/year with benefits most people never see. The job is difficult and dangerous and often dirty, but he has zero college debt and he will be making more than most engineers when he’s a journeyman.


61   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 24, 3:05am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Patrick says
https://science.sciencemag.org/content/372/6544/874

The problem with ‘follow your dream’

Finally, I went to my adviser for help. We hadn't talked much about my career plans over the years, but I felt I needed a new perspective from someone who knew me well. When he offered his advice, I was taken aback at first. What happened to “if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life”? My adviser assured me there is seldom such a job. Every job has its ugly bits. But as long as you're happy most of the time, you can struggle through the parts you don't like. He also said it was important to find a job I was good at, especially because my visa applications required me to make the case that I would benefit the country.


I hope that the student will choose a major that will lead to a high paying job and develop the higher threshold of pain to handle it. The local school has prepared the student quite well and we are grateful for this.
62   GreaterNYCDude   ignore (0)   2021 May 24, 8:53am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

gabbar says
1. Perfect ACT score
2. Excellent GPA
3. Likes STEM, loves math, chemistry, programming.
4. Has 9 months of research work experience at a university. Volunteer experience
5. One technical publication in a national journal
6. Hoping to keep undergraduate costs to 100k since student is likely to pursue graduate school.


It has probably changed somewhat, but a state school will probably offer a decent scholarship package. Apply to several places so you can negotiate the best package possible. Community College then transferring is more of an option now than it was 20 years ago. I know my local CC offers an associates in engineering. It's reasonably priced and the level of instruction is decent. Student could probably still work while going to school at least foe the first two years.

Have they considered Chemical Engineering? The world could use a few more good controls engineers who know both programming and process equipment.
63   gabbar   ignore (0)   2021 May 24, 9:27am     ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

GreaterNYCDude says
gabbar says
1. Perfect ACT score
2. Excellent GPA
3. Likes STEM, loves math, chemistry, programming.
4. Has 9 months of research work experience at a university. Volunteer experience
5. One technical publication in a national journal
6. Hoping to keep undergraduate costs to 100k since student is likely to pursue graduate school.


It has probably changed somewhat, but a state school will probably offer a decent scholarship package. Apply to several places so you can negotiate the best package possible. Community College then transferring is more of an option now than it was 20 years ago. I know my local CC offers an associates in engineering. It's reasonably priced and the level of instruction is decent. Student could probably still work while going to school at least foe the first two years.

Have they considered Chemical Engineering? The world could use a few more good controls engineers who know both ...


One or more decent scholarships at top state schools is likely. National Merit Scholarship is probable. Chemical Engineering is definitely an option. Chemistry teacher called the student a chemistry robot!

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