Any Advice?


Hello, I’ve been programming with python for close to three months now, I’m writing simple machine learning programs because 1. I can and 2. fluency… I’ve been looking into intern/junior programming positions and can’t find any. All over the internet, people say that you would be able to get a programming job without a degree but for some reason I’m seeing the opposite now.

I absolutely love programming and want this to be my career but I don’t have the money to go to college and the campuses are becoming ridiculous so I don’t even want to attempt to deal with the politics in these places. I’ll be honest, I never graduated highschool. There are alot of reasons and one of them almost (literally) killed me, I was never challenged throughout school so I got bored and when I couldn’t understand something the teacher was no help what so ever.

Having found something I’m passionate about and decently good at has given me a reason to continue on with life because it opens up the possibility that I can take care of my future family while being happy with my job. Seeing people say that almost everywhere requires at least a 4 year degree and years of experience is scary. HOW CAN I GET REAL WORLD EXPERIENCE WITHOUT A JOB?!?!??!

Does anyone have any advice? I’m losing it, slowing down on practice, I get sad thinking about it and it is even starting to just plain seem hopeless. I do not want to give up on this, it is extremely important to me so please, please, please help me out. If you had no experience but have a job in programming, how did you get it? Do you know anyone (personally) that would be coming from a similar situation as me that is in the industry? Are there even places that will hire someone like me? I know that I’ve got to actually be good with python to live up to the expectations of the jobs, which i work on every day (unless I start to get burned out then I take two days but it takes a month normally to get burned out) and am even trying to expand my programming language knowledge by learning JavaScript, HTML5, CSS, C++, and even Java. sigh

Sorry for the rant and thank you for reading (and if you do) responding, happy coding and thanks again.


Hey there,

The best way is to build multiple projects with your skills and put them together in a portfolio. Programming jobs require someone with the ability to solve problems, so as long as you are good enough in the language and demonstrated problem solving skills in your projects, it doesn’t matter what your background is.

You can google ‘How to get a programming job without a degree’

More practically speaking, consider taking the Data Science Path and other intensive with Python if you are serious in getting a job. All of them provide you with various projects to work on that you can showcase to potential employers.


Thank you for the response, coming up with a project seems to be the hard part lol. I actually finished the computer science path and had to redo my computer so I lost all of my projects.


Need some project ideas? Check out beginner-programming-projects. In short, you can build a snake game, a weather app, or a personal finance calculator!


You just destroyed the block i’ve been having THANK YOU SO MUCH. I have an idea for a VERY useful project but I need a better CPU (didn’t realize TensorFlow/deep learning used so much power) to actually do it :confused: So I TRULY appreciate that <3


Don’t try to spread out and learn muliple languages ( Java, C++, C–). Focus on one and your case being Python. Grapse minimal Javascript to work with frontend is fine. You can learn other stuff when you land your first job.

As to deep learning project, you can use tensorflowJS which runs on the client side. So you can pack your model as javascript and runs on users browsers. Btw, for quick project don’t try to train 10GBs data for a model. You are not doing a machine learning competition. Keep project goals straightforward and concise, delivery minimum viable products, and make it better/ add more fearures at a later time.


Okay, thank you once again. tensorflowJS won’t require so much CPU, or is it just that I was trying to train it on too much at once? I was following a google dev tutorial and they had a few folders already set up for training and they were indeed quite large. The reason I want to pretty much dive into deep learning and such, is because I have an idea for something that would make journalism way easier and even help normal people see if a news article is true or not. This requires a very good classifier and web scraper with some sort of GUI so it’s user friendly, so I figured, jump in and see what all I can do. I need a way better computer because these ‘dreams’ are very ambitious lol


You are going to do this big project all by yourself? (Should you find a few software engineers to work on it together)

If you train on very large dataset, you need a GPU. One good free alternative include putting your code on Google Colaboratory where basically it is an online Jupyter Notebook. It allows you to use a K80 GPU for some hours each month.


I just wanted to mention something. I don’t think college is a waste and it looks good on anyone’s resume. You might not have graduated high school, but you still have a lot of options.

If you are interested, speak to the Admissions department at a community college. The GED is an incredibly easy test. I know because I took it myself and passed without studying. Community college is very cheap. If you have a very low income, you will receive enough money in grants to cover the costs. You won’t have to pay for any of it. It sounds like you’re very good at programming. They have comp sci programs and certificates related to it. You should be able to breeze through it and maybe even double up on classses to get a degree in a short time.

I have been looking through internships on my employer’s website. I work for a very large healthcare system and there are a lot of internships and entry level positions related to programming. However, most of them require the applicant to be enrolled in a degree program or a recent graduate.

If anything. Just get your GED and enroll in 1 or 2 classes just so you can put on your resume that you’re working on a degree.

I haven’t looked for anything outside of healthcare though so I don’t know what it’s like for other employers. That’s just where I work.


Yes all by myself, I don’t know anyone who codes/has enough time/doesn’t need to be paid so shrug i’ll get it done lol. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE Google Colaboratory!!! Sweet, I can start working on the classifier now!! I’m making a website and a fact checking AI/News tab and would like to roll it out around the time I get to roll out the final Beta


Thank you for the response, you’re right it does indeed look great, I’m mainly worried about the politics of these places. As far as I know speech is being censored and conservatives are being unfairly punished because of their political views. You gave some fantastic ideas thank you so much. I will never say i’m good or great at coding because just like guitar, it can never truly be mastered but I’m a very hard worker. 8 hours a day for 3 months other than 2 days. (and a week because my dad was in the hospital) I found a passion and have decided to dedicate myself to it since I have these ideas that could help the world. I very well might have to do your suggestion. I’m not very good at math so that’s the biggest thing. I took a practice GED and got test freight and failed. So ifI were to pay the hundred so dollars it costs to take it, I would be worried that since i couldn’t pass the practice test, it will be a waste of money.

This is why I love these forums, people actually respond and seem to care. It’s so helpful having this resource, I may not come here to ask questions anymore (figured out how to use google for all my coding problems, and wording is everything lol) but this is still my favorite community.


You sound like you’re in a really good place right now. You do programming and you work at a hospital. Hospitals these days have very strong IT departments. On top of that, they generally have very good benefits. I wouldn’t be surprised if they offered some tuition reimbursement and even some certifications and training. Hold onto that job. Most people try to get into a hospital job so it’s very competitive. Even if you don’t have the best job there, you’re still at an advantage because you can apply internally and they’ll take you before anyone else.

Don’t be too concerned about the things you hear about in college. You can easily go through your entire college program without ever seeing anything political. I think most people just want to get in, take their classes, and go back home. It’s all about what you make of your time there. There are clubs and organizations there that can be political or not. There are even conservative ones. I think the things we see on t.v. are taken way out of context. There are no widespread “safe rooms” and liberal rallies. I’m sure they exist within some clubs/organizations, but they’re just small groups of people doing after-school activities.

There are so many more options in community college compared to when I went years ago. I think you can do most of it online now and never even have to step foot in a class. I recently found out about programs like CLEP and DSST. They are tests that allow you to study on your own and get college credit for them. I did two of them this past year to finish up my bachelors. I’ve heard you can get most of your regular classes through those programs. It probably all depends on how many the college will accept.


I am also facing the same issue…Thank you for posting this…


Must have been a misunderstanding, I don’t currently have a job sadly. Thank you very much for the information. I’ll be looking into ways to get into a college because I tell you, I’m learning Django as I try to make a website…IT SUCKS lol I got the linking of apps down but templates are being ridiculous and seems like it’s so easy to break it lol I spent two or three days making this and I’m gonna have to redo the whole thing because I messed it up so bad (blindly followed tutorials to the letter until the last one when I realized that I forgot to name templates differently and such. This is a huge project and one man probably cannot get this done in a year. So many pages, so much functionality. Its super difficult to try to learn by researching the things you don’t understand ESSPECIALLY BECAUSE DJANGO UPGRADED django-registration to django_registration AND HMAC (email verification when signing up) WORKED WITH THE OLD VERSION.

When I tried to use HMAC everything broke, I already had a generic sign up page(put in only a username and password for entry to the site) and then found out about HMAC…completely destroyed my signup (and it was the generic lazy template too [literally named lazy]) No more entry fields even though they are coded and linked properly sigh gonna redo the whole thing.

THAT IS WHY I WANT COLLEGE I NEED some way to have interactive learning, i’m good at reading about something then putting it into practice, I get it down and understood decently fast but doing the research without any actual knowledge of (django in this case) whatever it is you’re learning is proving to be extremely difficult due to so many conflicting instructions.

Thank you for the response again, i truly appreciate it and sorry for the late reply.


Yeah, I think I was confused about that. I think you mentioned your father was in the hospital and for some reason I thought you said you worked there.

You won’t be disappointed about college. The good thing about being unemployed though is your income will be low enough that you’ll get the maximum amount in grants. It’s basically a free check towards tuition and it will most likely cover the full cost if you go to a community college or if you can find a University with a low enough tuition.

Keep us updated. I’m kinda curious what the Computer Science programs are like. I’m still trying to decide if I should go for a Masters in Nursing since I already have my bachelor’s or if I should just start working on a Computer Science degree.


Good point! I will for sure keep you all posted. Wish me luck lol


thanks for your wonder full advice