My career, let you show me it
June 14, 2012 12:08 PM Subscribe
Graduating with an IT degree at 31 - how to be attractive to employers, please?
posted by Chorus to Work & Money (4 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
My career has gone something like this:
I lucked into a lowly admin position five years ago in an insurance office. Promoted to claims handler, office supervisor and now regional supervisor. I have a lot of MI, WIP management, stat analysis and office-running experience. I hate this job and want to leave.
When I was an admin, I completed the first year of a BSc in IT at night (very generalised degree, covers programming, networking, databases, web design). I failed year two, as I had been promoted to claims handler and the country's regulator decreed that anybody in an 'insurance advisory capacity' had to take exams to get to chartered status. So, working full-time + work exams + IT degree = impossible for a human.
Now, at year five with this company, I am two exams away from chartered status. Again, no longer want to work in insurance, want to go back to college and complete my degree. By doing year 2 and 3 I'll have an ordinary degree, a fourth year will give me an honours. There are opportunities during the degree to get either work experience and/or IT qualifications.
The real problem is, I'm only doing this degree because a) I'm sick of the job I have, b) in Ireland a mature student has access to decent grants plus I have a year's wage saved up, and c) IT is something I'm capable of doing and I don't mind it. My real passion is writing and I've been published/short-listed for awards, and it's something I'll always be doing for the rest of my life, regardless of any success or my 'real life' career. But I know I *need* a real life career; writing will not pay the bills.
So, I'll be a female, 31, with a BSc in IT. I am hugely concerned with being utterly unemployable. What qualifications should I get that more or less guarantee employment, or at least look enticing on a CV?
Based on my circumstances...:
1) During the degree, should I focus on work experience, qualifications or a mix?
2) Based on the above, is there any particular area of IT I should focus on when it comes to being slightly older?
3) Honours degree or not?
4) Any particular qualifications that are essential? (This is a huge concern of mine, not having any IT letters after my name)
(Family plans do not figure into my career at all. Not interested in getting hitched/kids. I also own a house and car and zero debt, fyi)