Mentoring for High School student who's interested in IT

At work, someone asked to meet his son to give advice on IT career. Typically, I’ve given advice to college graduates or fellow peers but never to High School student. I have a general helpful guide but curioius if you guys want to pitch in.

  • Learn latest popular technology as a hobby. Such as Node.JS, Java, or whatever he likes. Try to get into a habit of self-learning IT skills.

  • Do not become a religious developer. Meaning don’t be biased toward a specific technology. I don’t get why there’s always Java vs .Net vs PHP vs whatever. Learn as much as you can. After you graduate from College, you’ll be selling ‘skill services’. More skill = More opportunities.

  • Start a IT blog. You don’t need to be a IT pro to write a blog but this will help him in Job Market. Perhaps a fellow Google/Apple developers may discover him and provide intern opportunities. Also, follow popular IT bloggers and comment on their blog.

  • I can’t predict 100% of near 4~8 years into the future but my bet is that Mobile technology will be #1. So, I’m going to recommend him to get into Android/iOS development.

  • Look for an IT intern job starting as a Freshman. With right attitude, some companies may accept a student with very little experience.

Not sure if I’m going to talk all of that but feel free to pitch in.

There are a ton of places to learn now that didn’t exist when I was a kid. Lots of interactive sites, great videos, and full courses that take people from A to Z.

But really, just express the importance of making stuff. It doesn’t matter if you make bad stuff or good stuff or stuff that people use, just make stuff. Everyone makes bad stuff, but that’s ok if you’re learning why it’s bad and what you can do to make it better.

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Best advice ever. Find a project to feel passionate about and develop a solution which deals with it.

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I agree. One of those site is coursera. It’s real live course that’s FREE. Signed up for free android course.

I would add practice as much as you can… And have lots of fun doing it :smiley:


IT career.

The IT field is currently broad and growing daily! it depends what the guy wants to do. It is necessary to specialise, best to pick a subject that you enjoy…

How about registering a Vanity Domain Name or maybe something memorable such as “Bing” or “Google”?

Create a blog and upload to a web host. If the monthly fee is prohibitive then at least start with a free web host.

Start marketing ASAP.

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