There’s no doubt that more and more young people are turning to software development as their chosen career path. Recent statistics show a dramatic uptick in the number of teenagers learning to code. Combine this with exciting job prospects and the potential for high salaries, and you get a thriving new sector that has youth on its side. Here’s why teenagers are turning to software development to kickstart their careers.
What is software development?
Software development is the process of designing, testing, and deploying applications for computers. Software developers use programming languages to create these applications. The tools used by programmers are constantly evolving, but programs like C++, Python, Ruby on Rails, and PHP are the most widely used languages among current coders. Programming isn’t restricted to writing. Programmers must also know how the software operates, and why code works.
The technology sector has seen tremendous growth over the past decade, which means there are plenty of opportunities for skilled individuals. Skilled software developers can expect to find lucrative job offers at major corporations or even their own startups. With that in mind, here are three key reasons why teens are turning to software development as a viable tech career.
Good job prospects
Software development is highly sought after in the job market. Software developers are some of the highest-paid workers in today’s economy. The average annual salary for software engineers is $100,080 (in the US), higher than many other top professions like physicians, architects, and financial analysts. This number makes sense when you consider how quickly software is becoming integral to other sectors.
Software developers are needed in nearly every industry including healthcare, finance, IT, and even aerospace. In fact, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics expects software development jobs to grow 17% from 2014 to 2024, which is much faster than average for all occupations. This means that no matter what direction a young programmer chooses to take, he will always have a place in the growing technology sector.
The tech sector is also looking for employees with a wide range of specialties, including software design and testing. You could even end up working for companies like AvePoint (avepoint.com), helping to build better security and storage solutions for existing software such as Microsoft Office. Pair this with the fact that employers value soft skills like communication and teamwork over technical skills, and you get a job market where nearly any young coder can find a place.
Ongoing industry investment
The technology sector is actively investing in youth initiatives to expand the software industry. Large companies like Microsoft, Google, and Apple have all announced education-focused projects that bring coding workshops to schools and libraries across the country. This push for computer literacy means more teens will be equipped with the skills they need to succeed as professional coders once they graduate from high school.
Software development may be a technical career path, but coding has creative elements as well. Software developers have to think outside of the box in order to solve problems and build innovative solutions, which is why many people find programming so rewarding. Many programs also offer project-based learning where students can work together on group projects. This gives younger coders the chance to learn how to work in a dynamic, collaborative environment.