Computer Science in Virginia
The first British colony and the birthplace of eight U.S. presidents, Virginia, a.k.a. the Old Dominion, is noteworthy for many reasons. The state contains a wide variety of geographic features, including coastal plains, estuaries, mountains and forests. Popularly known for jobs in local and federal government and the military, a large segment of Virginia's economy is devoted to farming and business. According to Cyberstates 2015: The Definitive State-by-State Analysis of the U.S. Tech Industry published by CompTIA, Virginia had the second-highest concentration of workers in the tech industry in 2014, accounting for 9.4 percent of private sector employment in the state.
The same study states that Virginia is home to a business cluster in computer systems design, which is a major component of IT services. The Dulles Technology Corridor is home to the national or regional headquarters of dozens of technology companies, including Cisco Systems, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Google, among others. This means the state is not only rich in natural resources, but also opportunities for those interested in careers in computer science and related fields.
Computer Science Education in Virginia
|Institution Name||No. of Computer Science Programs Offered||Tuition & Fees||Admission Rate|
|George Mason University||6||$11,300||80.99%|
|University of Management and Technology||6||$9,450||N/A|
|ITT Technical Institute-Norfolk||3||N/A||N/A|
|ITT Technical Institute-Richmond||3||N/A||N/A|
The U.S. News & World Report has repeatedly identified computer science as one of the top-paying university majors. For those interested in working for one of the technology companies in Virginia, earning a degree in computer science or closely-related area may help get one's foot in the door.
Tech Industries and Careers in Virginia
|Career||Annual Mean Wage||Statewide Projected Job Growth Rate||Statewide Current Number of Jobs|
|Computer Network Architects||$117,700||13%||9,040|
|Computer Network Support Specialists||$76,240||10.4%||7,010|
|Computer Systems Analysts||$100,090||25.2%||28,090|
|Information Security Analysts||$110,450||26.6%||10,290|
|Network and Computer Systems Administrators||$94,380||14%||19,800|
|Software Developers, Applications||$111,010||21.5%||37,340|
|Software Developers, Systems Software||$121,560||20.2%||26,710|
Government, the military, and business are all major contributors to Virginia's economy, and all these types of companies depend on computer programmers and other IT specialists in order to operate.
"United States Tech Industry Employs 6.5 Million in 2014," Coloradotechnology.org, 23 August 2015, http://www.coloradotechnology.org/news/216203/United-States-Tech-Industry-Employs-6.5-Million-in-2014.htm
"Educational attainment in the United States: 2009," U.S. Census, 22 May 2015, http://www.census.gov/prod/2012pubs/p20-566.pdf
"College majors with the best return on investment," U.S. News & World Report, 25 April 2015, http://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/articles/2012/09/12/college-majors-with-the-best-return-on-investment
"College Navigator," National Center for Education Statistics, 17 May 2015, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
"University of Virginia," U.S. News & World Report, 23 August 2015, http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/university-of-virginia-main-campus-234076/overall-rankings
"Department of Computer Science," University of Virginia, 23 August 2015, http://www.cs.virginia.edu/index.html
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"Computer Science," George Mason University, 23 August 2015, https://cs.gmu.edu/
"Virginia Tech," U.S. News & World Report, 23 August 2015, http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/virginia-polytechnic-institute-and-state-university-233921/overall-rankings
"Program Strengths & Goals," Virginia Tech Department of Computer Science, 23 August 2015, https://www.cs.vt.edu/about/program_strengths
"Computing Accreditation Commission," ABET.org, 22 May 2015, http://www.abet.org/about-abet/governance/accreditation-commissions/computing-accreditation-commission/
"May 2014 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Virginia," Bureau of Labor Statistics, 23 August 2015, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_va.htm
"Virginia," US Census Quickfacts, 23 August 2015, http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/51000.html