There’s an understandable concern that AI will replace people’s jobs.
In particular software engineering jobs. Can’t we just have AI write all the code?
“The [AI] trend is revolutionary…..and in your career, it’s really useful if you know the latest tech. [But] there’s always going to be benefit in the fundamentals and the foundational knowledge of writing clean code, understanding data structures and algorithms, and the ability to build new projects and learn new tools.”
Oli shares that, like with any new trend, it comes with initial hype and investor funding for that tech. Yet, then there’s an eventual plateau, and we realize the whole world probably won’t change overnight.
But he also advises,”definitely don’t avoid these tools [like ChatGPT]…it does shift the landscape a bit…it might shift the barrier of entry.”
But will you see the Software Engineering field evaporate overnight? No.
With Flatiron School, you can learn an in-demand skill like coding in as little as 15 weeks. Apply today to get started.
The Real Job Security is Solving Problems
At the end of the day, what matters isn’t actually writing code or “being a software engineer.” What matters is solving problems for companies!
“[At Flatiron], secretly, while we’re teaching you [coding skills like React.js and Python Flask on the backend, we’re teaching you all these other soft skills that can apply to anywhere in your life.”
One of those soft skills is problem-solving, that ability to work through roadblocks and figure things out. Whether a company uses AI or not, when working in a tech role, you want to be able to fix errors as they come up. “Employers want to know, can you troubleshoot?” says Oli.
That means being able to adapt and think on the spot.
“[After solving a problemI always tell my students to write it down,” allowing yourself to build a process for yourself when you get stuck.
Other key soft skills Oli emphasizes are communication, learn to take feedback, emotional intelligence, and how to take care of yourself.
So when you think about software engineer bootcamps, it’s easy to focus on just building the tech skills. But the soft skills you learn in a bootcamp like Flatiron can launch you in any direction in you career. “If you get to the end of this, and feel ‘I just don’t want to spend that much time sitting at a computer…..’ You can take those skills we’ve taught you and go do design, product management, technical sales, or quality assurance. You don’t necessarily need to become a software engineer!”
All this is to say, what matters most is learning, growing, and creating value.
How Flatiron is Working with the Emerging Reality of AI
Oli emphasizes that as a software engineering trainer, there is no reason to shy away from AI in guiding his students.
“You can’t put the monster back in Pandora’s box….there’s no [reason] for me to say you’re not allowed to use AI…and employers are looking for students who know how to use AI…what I encourage students to do is use those tools, understand where their limitations are, and then understand where using them is not beneficial.”
In other words, if during your bootcamp, you write your entire coding project using AI, you simply won’t learn the hard skills for yourself, which prevents you from employing those problem-solving and troubleshooting skills in real-life situations.
On the other hand, if you use ChatGPT to support you in figuring out a particular issue, you may be putting yourself in the best position possible. For instance, Oli says you could ask ChatGPT to “explain this problem using sports analogies,” which will expedite your learning process (if sports are your thing).
At the end of the day, you don’t need any special background to launch into a coding career. You just need to make a choice. So whether you have zero coding knowledge, are self-taught, or are somewhere in between, Flatiron School’s Software Engineering Course is crafted for anyone.
You’ll learn by doing. Throughout the course, if you’re not building and refining code for apps or websites, you’ll be studying, practicing, or attending lectures to learn different coding languages.
Start learning software engineering in as little as 15 weeks. Apply today to get started.