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I live my dream, and school gets in my way

 
 
Reply Fri 8 Dec, 2017 01:06 pm
Hello. I am a Sophmore in Highschool participating in an International Baccalaureate program. From the age of 8, I accidentally opened a video game file with notepad and saw unreadable letters. I knew those symbols somehow made that game run, and I wanted to know what is said. By the age of 10, I realized that the file I opened was not actual code but rather a compiled file. By 12 years old I learned Java, and by 13 I learned another 6 languages. I'm now 16 and have developed three apps for Mobile Devices, one currently remaining in the app store as the other apps were just full-scale private projects. I understand the basics of computers, computing, servers and databases, networking and so on. I've learned everything I know from home, and school never taught me anything but perhaps the math I need to program. I quite obviously know I am successful and I don't need anyone to tell me otherwise. I know what I am capable of and I know my future plans and ambitions, but here is the problem: Highschool (Especially being in IB, classes above AP) takes to much time, and I simply can't do what I love. I'm not depressed or sad, I laugh at school and try my hardest, but ponder the question "Should I really be here? Should I really give it my all?" Because really, Should I give it all my time and dedication if I feel as if it isn't any help. Who cares about World History or Chemistry, not me. It feels as if I am learning nothing that helps me progress. It only takes my time and slows me down. My summers are spent with friends (I am very social) but mostly spent reading textbooks, writing programs, and learning anything tech related that will help me progress.

What should I do? Or how Should I look at the situation? Do I stay in IB, or drop it? Do I move to AP, or go to regulars. Should I care about grades? What is the benefit of remaining good grades and a high level of education if it is all without reason in my mind? ... I am in a situation where I am questioning my morals and values about school for the first time in my life for my passion (programming) which just so happens to be a well-paying job field(Bless! or else I'd be poor, programming happy).
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Type: Question • Score: 4 • Views: 1,803 • Replies: 6
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PUNKEY
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Dec, 2017 01:55 pm
You don't want to be a one trick pony.

You need social skills and a well rounded education .

Sit down with a counselor and figure out how to do this.

I just saw a story about Stephen Hawking. He sure has a fun personality and a zest for life. Brilliant but compassionate in spite of immense physical challenges. He can sit down with scientists, actors, politicians and children and learn from them. Intellect and humility. Not many people have that talent.
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Dec, 2017 02:13 pm
@PUNKEY,
I agree with Punky - as smart as you are in one area, you are more marketable if you have a well rounded education. That does not mean that you become an expert in say World Civilizations (I say that because that is one area of study I really disliked), but to have an overall knowledge of different areas.

Some areas of study will help you later in life than others - for instance English/writing will be very important whatever you pursue. You will need to be able to communicate well if you deal with other people in any way verbally and with the written word.

You might also discover an area of study you never thought of or thought you would love. And you never know how this area of study could help you in the future. Just look at your classes as a way of broadening your mind and enjoy the learning.

Also the social aspect of high school is important - to help you develop socially and to mature in other ways over and above being intelligent. Certain classes and school itself can sometimes seem boring, but it really is what you make of it.
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Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Fri 8 Dec, 2017 10:30 pm
The purpose of formal education isn't just to prepare you for work. It's to provide you with information in many subjects, some of which may interest you and some of which may not.

Walking away from school at this stage in your life will, IMO, ultimately be limiting.

I once said to a friend's son, "The more you know, the more you are." I still believe this whole-heartedly.
centrox
 
  0  
Reply Sat 9 Dec, 2017 05:27 am
@Roberta,
Roberta wrote:
I once said to a friend's son, "The more you know, the more you are." I still believe this whole-heartedly.

Big risk of becoming a really clever dickhead who thinks the sun shines out of his ass and gets fired from Google.
jespah
 
  2  
Reply Sat 9 Dec, 2017 05:52 am
@Siging90,
Oh this is exceptionally short-sighted.

There will always be people who can code. ALWAYS. And there will, inevitably, be people who can code cheaper and faster than you. Welcome to outsourcing. It happens all the time with people whose sole mission in life is coding.

I'm not saying your competition is necessarily 'better', per se, than you would be. But if you get $50/hour and take 3 hours to code something, and someone overseas is paid $15/hour and does it in 5, then they are half your price and management will pick them every time.

Or if you are 99% accurate with coding and QA testing but, again, are $50/hour and do it for 3 hours, if your competition makes $15/hour, they do it in 5 hours with a 75% accuracy rate that they spend 2 additional hours fixing, then they are still cheaper than you - and management will still select them over you, every time.

Management may also make a conscious decision to be fine with 75% accuracy and not bother fixing it at all. This is especially the case with iterative development, where software is churned out in bits every day, week, month, etc. A big part of the reason for allowing for more errors is to make sure that end users have the software and can make use of it quickly. A 75% success rate beats the hell out of the 0% success rate the company gets when the software isn't out yet.

Folks who only code for a living also tend to not interview too well and they are inevitably not (it can happen, but it's not a common thing) selected for a management track, even if they are qualified and they want it. They also tend to not be too good at training people, explaining bugs or fixes, or handling the media or the public if an error becomes a public news story.

Want to know the people who have a lot more job security? The ones who have better communications skills, both orally and in writing. Learn how to do public speaking, how to write step by step instructions, and how to craft a quick email which will get results without wasting too much of management's often limited time, and you will help yourself out, big time.

Coders can and do become interchangeable in management's eyes, particularly when it comes time to slash budgets. Finish your education so you can offer more - and so you can weather the storm if all of your coding training comes to naught because of some great leap forward in technology (don't say it can't happen; we live in era where, in living memory, people who were touch typists and had good jobs lost out to people who understood computers, and engineers with fantastic backgrounds in tubes had to then learn transistors and then printed circuits).

Unless your family is starving and you absolutely must get out and work, finish your education. You'll make considerably more money in the long run. Work, I am sure, will still be there - and if it's different in two years (and it will be) versus starting now, then you'll just have to deal with that.

One more thing: don't be in such a rush to join the rat race. It is not fun a lot of the time. It'll wait.
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Roberta
 
  2  
Reply Sat 9 Dec, 2017 06:41 am
@centrox,
centrox wrote:

Roberta wrote:
I once said to a friend's son, "The more you know, the more you are." I still believe this whole-heartedly.

Big risk of becoming a really clever dickhead who thinks the sun shines out of his ass and gets fired from Google.



Hey, This could happen regardless of what he knows or how far he goes with his formal education. A dickhead is a dickhead.
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