by APS Museum
An information technology degree is incredibly versatile in todays high tech world. Although most people think of information technology as primarily focused within the computer industry itself or in fairly traditional roles such as data processing and retrieval, this doesnt cover the wide scope of what information technology involves.
In fact, according to the U.S. government, information technology degrees are in high demand in several industries that are quite surprising. While many of these rely on complex computer transactions and information, several focus on entirely different areas but rely on information technology to keep them up and running.
Software Programming and Consulting
This is a relatively traditional field for those with information technology degrees to go into, but theres a twist. The industries that actually rely heavily on software upgrades and customization may surprise you. Banking, finance and education all rely heavily on the ability of programmers and consultants to upgrade their software as well as keeping their databases safe and secure.
Todays advanced manufacturing facilities are highly automated with complex computer systems in place to keep things running smoothly. Electronics, computer systems and custom-designed software are all used in manufacturing to increase productivity and product quality through better control and design. Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) are in high demand in hundreds of advanced manufacturing areas from cell phones to automobiles.
Biotechnology and Genomics
Mapping genes, correlating voluminous amounts of medical and pharmaceutical research and controlling the production of highly volatile medical compounds requires some of the most advanced computing capabilities available. Bioprocessing, quality control and biotechnology research and development all rely on information technology. Human capabilities simply cant keep pace with the complexity of engineering needed in genomic research. In fact, the biotech industry now needs more employees with information technology degrees than colleges and universities are producing, and the trend will continue to grow.
An information technology degree can put you in the thick of one of the most fascinating industries today nanotechnology. This is the development of devices and systems at the atomic level that will improve or enhance current products, from drug delivery systems to tracking equipment and information storage. Nanotechnology uses information technologies to design and create products on the smallest scale imaginable by designing devises and products not visible to the human eye.
Mapping and Geospatial Technology
Storm tracking, newer and more detailed maps and the study of geology and terrain all rely on information technology systems. From the national weather service to real estate development firms, geological and mapping technologies area growing industries always on the lookout for professionals with information technology degrees.
No other industry in the world relies so heavily on information technology within the design and actual use of its products. Airplanes, helicopters, jets and space shuttles all rely on computer guided navigational and communications systems to one degree or another. From design and evaluation of models to monitoring of actual missions, information technology is integral to the aerospace industry.
The CIA, FBI and various other federal agencies have sought individuals holding information technology for years; today the largest employer may well be Homeland Security. Information and database management, sensor controls for security systems and simulation software for disasters all demand highly qualified IT professionals.
Whether you enter one of these challenging and rewarding careers directly or leverage your education into becoming an expert in training others, an information technology degree obviously translates into success in many of todays cutting edge industries.
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