Keep exploring.

A conversation with a student today got me thinking about the importance of versatility in our tech careers. They asked me: “Should I only apply for data science internships, or should I also look for software engineering ones? Will I miss out on app or web development if I go all-in on data science?”

It’s a fantastic question, and my answer is this: It’s not an either/or decision. In the ever-evolving world of IT, many projects involve both data science and software engineering. In fact, there’s no clear line between the two jobs! If you enjoy working with data, you might also love playing with databases and other data storage and manipulation tools. Does that make you a data scientist or a software engineer? Perhaps, you’re both! 🤔

In IT, “linear” careers, where you only focus on one thing, are very rare. To keep pace with this fast-moving industry, we must follow the Red Queen’s advice from Lewis Carroll’s famous book: “Here we must run as fast as we can, just to stay in place. And if you wish to go anywhere, you must run twice as fast as that!”

So, don’t box yourself in! Explore different opportunities and stay open to learning. Who knows, there may be a career path you’ve never considered that could give you the perfect chance to grow and thrive! When choosing an internship, look for the one that provides the best learning opportunities.