Career and Education Opportunities for Computer Scientists in Huntsville, Alabama
Computer scientists can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Huntsville, Alabama area. The national trend for computer scientists sees this job pool growing by about 24.2% over the next eight years. Computer scientists generally conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors.
Computer scientists earn about $46 per hour or $97,750 yearly on average in Alabama and about $47 hourly or $97,970 annually on average nationally. Incomes for computer scientists are better than in the overall category of Computer in Alabama, and better than the overall Computer category nationally. Computer scientists work in a variety of jobs, including: scientific programmer analyst, bioinformatics software engineer, and control system computer scientist.
There are eleven schools of higher education in the Huntsville area, including seven within twenty-five miles of Huntsville where you can get a degree to start your career as a computer scientist. Given that the most common education level for computer scientists is a Master's degree, you can expect to spend about six years training to become a computer scientist if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Computer Scientist
In general, computer scientists conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors. They also solve or develop solutions to problems in the field of computer hardware and software.
Computer scientists assign or schedule tasks so as to meet work priorities and goals. They also analyze problems to design solutions involving computer hardware and software. Equally important, computer scientists have to meet with managers and others to solicit cooperation and resolve problems. Finally, computer scientists evaluate project plans and proposals to gauge feasibility issues.
Every day, computer scientists are expected to be able to think through problems and come up with general rules. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.
It is important for computer scientists to apply theoretical expertise and innovation to generate or apply new technology. They are often called upon to design performance standards, and evaluate activities in light of established standards. They also design and interpret organizational goals and procedures. They are sometimes expected to participate in staffing decisions and direct training of subordinates. Somewhat less frequently, computer scientists are also expected to confer with users and technicians to establish computing needs and system requirements.
Computer scientists sometimes are asked to layout computers and the software that runs them. They also have to be able to maintain network hardware and software, direct network security measures, and monitor networks to insure availability to system users and evaluate project plans and proposals to gauge feasibility issues. And finally, they sometimes have to approve and adjust operational budgets.
Like many other jobs, computer scientists must want to innovate to meet new challenges and be persistant in the face of problems and impediments.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Huntsville include:
- Applications Programmer. Develop, create, and modify general computer applications software or specialized utility programs. Analyze user needs and develop software solutions. Design software or customize software for client use with the aim of optimizing operational efficiency. May analyze and design databases within an application area, working individually or coordinating database development as part of a team.
- Computer Programmer. Convert project specifications and statements of problems and procedures to detailed logical flow charts for coding into computer language. Develop and write computer programs to store, locate, and retrieve specific documents, data, and information. May program web sites.
- Computer Security Specialist. Plan, coordinate, and implement security measures for information systems to regulate access to computer data files and prevent unauthorized modification, destruction, or disclosure of information.
- Computer Systems Analyst. Analyze science, engineering, and all other data processing problems for application to electronic data processing systems. Analyze user requirements, procedures, and problems to automate or improve existing systems and review computer system capabilities, workflow, and scheduling limitations. May analyze or recommend commercially available software. May supervise computer programmers.
- Computer Systems Engineer. Research, design, and test operating systems-level software, compilers, and network distribution software for medical, industrial, and general computing applications. Set operational specifications and formulate and analyze software requirements. Apply principles and techniques of computer science, engineering, and mathematical analysis.
- Network Operations Analyst. Determine user requirements and design specifications for computer networks. Plan and implement network upgrades.
- Network Systems and Data Communications Analyst. Analyze, design, and evaluate network systems, such as local area networks (LAN), wide area networks (WAN), Internet, intranet, and other data communications systems. Perform network modeling, analysis, and planning. Research and recommend network and data communications hardware and software. Includes telecommunications specialists who deal with the interfacing of computer and communications equipment. May supervise computer programmers.
- Network and Computer Systems Administrator. Install, configure, and support an organization's local area network (LAN), wide area network (WAN), and Internet system or a segment of a network system. Maintain network hardware and software. Monitor network to ensure network availability to all system users and perform necessary maintenance to support network availability. May supervise other network support and client server specialists and plan, coordinate, and implement network security measures.
- Software Engineer. Design and develop solutions to complex applications problems, system administration issues, or network concerns. Perform systems management and integration functions.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Computer Scientist Training
University of Alabama in Huntsville - Huntsville, AL
University of Alabama in Huntsville, 301 Sparkman Dr, Huntsville, AL 35899. University of Alabama in Huntsville is a medium sized university located in Huntsville, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,431 students and an admission rate of 89%. University of Alabama in Huntsville has bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree programs in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated one, thirty-two, and five students respectively in 2008.
John C Calhoun State Community College - Tanner, AL
John C Calhoun State Community College, 6250 U S Highway 31 N, Tanner, AL 35671. John C Calhoun State Community College is a medium sized college located in Tanner, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,754 students. John C Calhoun State Community College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated one, zero, and nine students respectively in 2008.
Athens State University - Athens, AL
Athens State University, 300 N Beaty St, Athens, AL 35611. Athens State University is a small university located in Athens, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 3,322 students. Athens State University has a bachelor's degree program in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated two students in 2008.
Alabama A & M University - Normal, AL
Alabama A & M University, 4900 Meridian St, Normal, AL 35762. Alabama A & M University is a medium sized university located in Normal, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,124 students and an admission rate of 49%. Alabama A & M University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated twenty-three and fourteen students respectively in 2008.
J F Drake State Technical College - Huntsville, AL
J F Drake State Technical College, 3421 Meridian St N, Huntsville, AL 35811. J F Drake State Technical College is a small college located in Huntsville, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 780 students. J F Drake State Technical College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated four and five students respectively in 2008.
Oakwood University - Huntsville, AL
Oakwood University, 7000 Adventist Blvd NW, Huntsville, AL 35896. Oakwood University is a small university located in Huntsville, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,850 students and an admission rate of 57%. Oakwood University has 2 areas of study related to Computer Scientist. They are:
- Computer and Information Sciences, bachelor's degree.
- Computer Science, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
Snead State Community College - Boaz, AL
Snead State Community College, 220 North Walnut Street, Boaz, AL 35957-0734. Snead State Community College is a small college located in Boaz, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,234 students. Snead State Community College has an associate's degree program in Computer and Information Sciences which graduated nine students in 2008.
Planning and Scheduling Professional: The PSP certification is to recognize specialists who meet a demanding set of planning and scheduling criteria by a rigorous examination, experience, education and ethical qualificaion.
For more information, see the AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering through total cost management) website.
Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing Professional - Technologist: ASME GDTP Certification provides the means to recognize proficiency in the understanding and application of the geometric dimensioning and tolerancing (GD&T) principles expressed in the ASME Y14.
For more information, see the American Society of Mechanical Engineers International website.
CIW Associate: Certified CIW Associates possess the basic hands-on skills and knowledge that Internet professionals are expected to understand and use.
For more information, see the Certified Internet Web Professionals website.
CIW Security Analyst: Security Analysts protect an organization's assets and operations.
For more information, see the Certified Internet Web Professionals website.
Internet and Computing Core Certification: IC is the ideal starting point for anyone interested in learning computer and Internet basics.
For more information, see the Certiport, Inc website.
Stay Sharp Program - Defeating Rogue Access Points: Security professionals who are concerned about the weaknesses of wireless networks.
For more information, see the Global Information Assurance Certification website.
Certified Web Professional - Enterprise Developer: A CWP Enterprise Developer builds n-tier database and legacy connectivity solutions for Web applications, using Java, Java application programming interfaces (APIs), Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) solutions, middleware tools, and distributed object models.
For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.
Microsoft Certified Professional Developer: For individuals who wish to distinguish themselves as an expert in Windows development, Web application development, or enterprise applications development.
For more information, see the Microsoft Corporation website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Huntsville, Alabama
Huntsville is located in Madison County, Alabama. It has a population of over 176,645, which has grown by 11.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Huntsville, 82, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Huntsville are valued at $44,900 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, 1,004 new homes were constructed in Huntsville, down from 1,558 the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Huntsville are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and construction. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 36.1% of Huntsville residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 12.7%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Huntsville is 7.6%, which is less than Alabama's average of 10.7%.
The percentage of Huntsville residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 55.2%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Whitesburg Church of God, Whitesburg Church and Maple Grove Church are among the churches located in Huntsville. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.
Huntsville is home to the Valley Hill Golf and Country Club and the Lowe Industrial Park as well as John H Steigerwood Field and Milton Frank Stadium. Shopping malls in the area include Madison Plaza Shopping Center, Madison Square Mall Shopping Center and Memorial Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Huntsville can choose from King's Inn, Candlewood Suites and Economy Inn for temporary stays in the area.