I don’t profess to love technology, in fact I am very wary of it. I do enjoy programming, and I realize that computers aren’t going away anytime soon. So it saddens me then when people within universities have no clue whatsoever that one of the top growth areas is computer science. Why? Partially is because it’s relevant. Students who do CS get jobs. Good paying jobs. It’s hard to find a job, in the sciences anyway, that doesn’t require some programming skill to process the vast amounts of data being produced. We have come to the point where it is hard to ignore computer science education.
Here’s the bottom line. CS enrolment in most places has ballooned in the past few years. At Cornell, their enrolment has gone from 175 in 2011 to 684 in 2016. In fact institutions across North America have seen doubling and tripling of CS enrolments in the past five years. Just a little blip really. Nothing at all provocative about those numbers. On the there side of things, Canada’s demographic is changing – over the next 10 years the number of 17-24 year old will actually decline. Less students = less government funding. This could be offset by increasing enrolment is CS, OR by offering new forms of degrees – 4 year coop?, more 3 years degrees, industry-focused degrees etc.
The worst thing to do? Ignore computer science. Put no effort into building innovative degrees, or investing in infrastructure.
Innovation needs computer science. But apparently not everyone understands that.