I recently finished furthering my education and am currently looking for a full time permanent job. It has left me reflecting on the things I learned during my time as a contract developer at RIM. As this was my first real job I had a lot to learn. The number one lesson that I learned is that I do in fact love what I do. Working there, which is an amazing company despite the news, I learned a lot of things about myself. I found myself enjoying working unpaid voluntary overtime because of the hope that what I did had the ability to affect millions of people’s lives or to be a part of something that was already doing so. Just to be a part of that meant more to me than nearly any raise they could have given me. This is most likely the same passion that I see people entering med school feeling. They have the ability to seriously affect peoples lives in what is hopefully a positive way. Some people reading this may think that it is egotistical to compare my profession of scientists and software engineers to the respected medical profession. Even though it is biased to say so as a member of the former demographic, I don’t think it is. The general feeling I get whenever I talk to people is that few actually know what it takes to build a piece of technology for their lives. Software engineers and computer scientist’s handiwork  is everywhere.  Everything from your microwave to your weigh-scale has, often quite complex, software on it. This has affected my initial job search in one of a few different ways. The first way is that I find I cannot settle for anything that will have little impact after working at a place like RIM. My time there has heightened my dreams and ambitions that anything that I deem less would be mundane and lack fulfillment. I do not wish to simply work just to put food on my plate. This is not to say that I cannot find fulfillment in smaller companies working on smaller projects. It is simply saying, for example, that I would have trouble going back to my first job of cleaning the fryers at KFC. I want to create. I want what I create, or help create, to change peoples lives.

This has affected my job search by making me wary of which companies I apply to. I have only been applying to companies that strike a cord with me by displaying a true belief in what they create. It is very easy to tell which companies collectively enjoy what they do compared to who works because they have to. Hopefully this selectivity on my part will pan out as this is the one point I really hope to not be forced to concede in the interest of continuing to have a place to live.

 

Developer Since 2005

B.Sc Computer Science

University of Lethbridge

Devin Forbes