This is what's been bugging me for a really long time, especially now that I'm in college. It took me a really long time to figure out where to go, and even now I'm not completely satisfied. It bugs me that most people just learn about computers at school, and they only work with them "at work".
Then we get idiots like this guy I had to deal with (btw, did you guys read his resume?).
What a sad generation..
Isn't it ironic that the literal interpretation of "professional" is "one who *claims* to be an expert"?
This gets back to college for me. I went to school to become an electrical engineer, only because I was so "into" computers (and not just hardware, but operating systems too). Prior to every semester, there was a mandatory session on ethics and documentation. In that (my) first session for EEs, there were 600 students. By the time I graduated, 70 (including the 17 in my graduating class) of the 600 ended up with engineering degrees. Of those, I can tell you about 50% of the 600 were there for "the money" because everyone knew that engineers get paid a lot right out the gate. Well, what I thought then still holds true...if you're doing it for the money, you'll never see it through, its just too difficult. In the work world, once you have the job, its just the quality of the work that suffers and the effort of "good" engineers is spent making up the difference. My company has a habit of designing programs (proposals) with crappy, unsound design, and then when the shit hits the fan, taking all of the really good engineers from around the company and throwing them at the problem. The problem with that is, that the good engineers have to make the bad design work and then because these are usually long term projects, have to support that crap for years...when I first got to the program I'm currently on, I was excited because there was SO MUCH WRONG, that I knew I could make a huge difference in remaking it into a good design. I can't even tell you the personal satisfaction I get from seeing my designs not only getting implemented, but working and seeing the huge improvements that occur because of the design. Now, we are almost to a point where techs/engineers with minimal experience (I'd call them sub-standard, but that sounds mean, doesn't it?) can maintain the system for a good 5-10 years.
That's something that money just can't buy. If you aren't enjoying your job and don't derive personal satisfaction from your work, I really feel sorry for you...
Oh, and the big DLP television in my family room looks dandy. I just happen to get paid fairly well too...icing on the cake.