Bachelor of Information Technology: A Degree in Review
I finished, quite comfortably, the last exam I will ever have for IT, otherwise know as 'it never actually did get harder'. Yesterday evolved into a pretty sweet day, despite having to get up at 7am after less than 5 hours sleep. Not only did I finalise an IT related employment situation on the same day I finished the degree, but also I won basketball, threw a piece of bread into a birds mouth on the full and received some very beneficial emails.
It does not seem all that long ago when I was in my first semester of IT, learning about correct ergonomics and HTML tags. Wait, no, I think HTML tags came in second semester. Right before the launch of Brad's Summer Journal 3. Sure, I learnt things that year, but they were mainly along the lines of 'you don't have to go to lectures to pass subjects'; 'most of the people in this course are morons'; 'don't try and drink a bottle of vodka in one night no matter how cool you think it makes you at the time'; 'this years exam will be intensely similar to the exam two years before it' and 'there is actually a limit to how much you can sleep in one day' (24 hours).
Second year rolled around and it was time to get serious. Serious about cruising through life that is. Although my English, History and Psychology topics had finally been replaced with actual COMP topics nothing seemed to actually dictate that I was required to attend lectures and, with the moral excuse of working nightfill I slept in daily with reckless abandon and at least one day a week I played SNES cricket. The last credit result I ever got was in Semester 1 2004... Ever since then I've got distinctions or above. It was about second semester 2004 that I also started skipping tutes.
Sure, there were the occasional moments of knuckled-down, backs-to-the-wall assignments where Mark, Ryan and I would have to work together against the odds to pull off a project in time. Probably the best example I can think of is the time we stole a clock from the Engineering building because it amused us so much during Communication Skills workshops because its second hand kept slipping. Towards the end of semester the three of us managed to combine 90% of the five topics semesters assignments into the one week exam study break, pass them all and still manage to ace all the exams. It was pretty funny. It’s worth noting that if the three of us had put as much effort into our group assignments as we did manipulating member allocations and dismissals for group assignments we could have been unstoppable.
I got home that year after my third exam in three days (High Distinction, Distinction, High Distinction) and sat in front of my computer trying to work out exactly what it was that I did during summer holidays. I think my main problem is that it just didn't seem all that different to the past 18 months anyway. I had vowed earlier that week that summer 2004/05 would be a productive one and this kicked off well when I played my brother at Solitaire Showdown 14 times in a row. However by the end of summer it could at least be called semi-productive as it concluded with a product - this journal system.
I don't want to risk cheapening my degree, if that’s possible given what I’ve already said, but I’m suspicious that my main employability is sourced from the completely independent learning I’ve undertaken since last summer began. I’m sure that in the future I’ll look at what I’m doing and realise my decisions are grounded by concepts I studied (probably a term that should be used loosely) during university. Then again maybe I won’t, although I’m basing this opinion mainly on the fact that I was unable to assist Alex at all with his year 11 maths questions last week.
I said a year ago today that I thought I was a different person to the one I was a year before that. I think I can safely say the same thing again. But it’s slightly different. This time last year I was relocating the ground floor, since then I’ve started building up. So I’m guessing I kind of think I’m in the right place. Good for me!
Comparing that first day of holidays last year, Solitaire Showdown and a shift at Woolworths, compared to yesterdays helps to highlight this. While last summer I was drifting and my goals with me, this year I am focussed and engaged. I’m excited about this opportunity I have to deliver a web application, not just because of the appealing project and the benefits of working it, but also due to this ultimate opportunity to actually prove to the world and myself that I’m as smart and competent as I make myself out to be in this entry.