Important Message for IS Majors
Technical skills is the key
It is important that you build a strong technical foundation through your course work. Business students are typically well trained in soft skills (such as communication and management) and business context (i.e., you understand Accounting, Finance, and business processes). These are wonderful skills to complement your technical skills, which is often the determining factor for you to land your first job.
Sequence of courses
It is important that you take IS 340 and IS 380 as soon as possible, preferably in the first semester of your Junior year. These are foundation courses that other courses are built upon. The worst case is that you take everything the last year. You are not really exposed to the materials, and you probably will miss out on opportunities to have summer interns in the middle.
Build your job portfolio from day one
Throughout the IS program, you will take 7 very solid courses. Most employers prefer IS employees with experience. While it is the best scenario if you are able to have internships before you are formally on the job market, several students have successfully utilize their class projects to build their interview portfolio. You are able to demonstrate your technical skills to your future employers .
Prepare your resume
Make sure you have a resume that clearly states what you want to do and what you CAN do. It is important that you list your SKILLS – it is a skill driven business. Click here to see sample before and after resumes. Make sure your resume is well written and organized with a clear objective, tailored to the job that you are applying to.
Prepare for an internship
If you spend 4 semesters in this major, the summer is a great opportunity for you to get an internship. Any work experience is better than none, and an IS related work experience is better than non-IS. In order to secure an IS related internship, you should be familiar with programming language and database by then. It would be even better if you already have one or two more advanced major courses to show for.
Prepare for Technical Interview
Many IS employers may give you a technical interview, that is, a test on your technical knowledge and ability through verbal or written tests.