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I am a CS student currently searching internship positions that are important to my future career. I am passionate about web design and development and it is really what I think my niche is in the programming world.

I recently got offers between two companies - the first one, in an offshore company as a web developer where I am expected to study C# and AJAX (along with the basics: HTML, CSS, JS/JQuery, PHP, MySQL) and the second one specializes in Java and Agile software dev't.

I am better in PHP than Java.

It is obvious that I would pick the first one but I'm still on the fence because the second one is known to give solid training and foundation to both interns and employees while the first will expose me further to what I want to do.

Which should I pick - solid software development training and application or an real life application of a web developer's job for my internship?


As of 25 May 2012

To everyone, next week will be the last of my internship. I went with the Java/Agile company and that decision changed my career path and life in general a lot. My fear of Java is now gone, instead it made me love the language better and everything during the internship training just solidified my passion to be a web developer. Thank you all!

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closed as off topic by GlenH7, FrustratedWithFormsDesigner, Robert Harvey, Martijn Pieters, Walter Feb 1 '13 at 22:11

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2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

As somebody who needs to interview developers for positions on an Agile .NET team, I can tell you the things I look for in juniors:

  1. Do you understand how to think through a problem and find a solution?
  2. Are you able to ask questions?
  3. Do you have direct experience with the libraries we work with?
  4. Are you passionate about what you are doing?
  5. Have you shown the capacity to learn and adapt?

If you are not comfortable in Java, that might be the best thing to do to show in an interview your ability to adapt. However, if you aren't passionate about the work they do there you'll probably be miserable and that's not worth it.

Personally, given the push towards Agile across the entire industry (and now Lean) if you pick up that alone I think it will be worth it!

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Thank you for the wonderful comment! –  Eduardo Feb 1 '13 at 23:54

If you are still learning, if your are better in PHP than in Java, then I believe you should go with the Java.


Because it force you into a world you are not comfortable with and force you to adapt and "learn to learn". Technology will change a lot during your career and its important to be able to keep up. Going from a dynamic mostly web oriented language to a static general purpose language may give you a lot of wisdom about programming. It also teach you to think at a higher level than just array() and $_POST. Plus, both language community tend to have pretty opposite personality. PHP emphasize ease of use and quick development while Java tend to be more "do the right thing even if its a bit harder" (Personal opinion, I have worked in both). If you do get back to PHP after Java, you will not be the same programmer, and many thing that you take for granted now won't appear the same to you. I know, it happened to me.

Plus, learning agile and project management skill is very important, and will be useful no matter where you go. If the second company is where you'll learn the most about it, that's where I would go.

Don't worry, if you really like web development you'll have more than enough exposition once you start working. But don't forget that someday, a new cool thing will come by and you'll want to learn it as well. If you learned from the start to learn new thing, it will be far easier. The world went trough Mainframe, Desktop, Web, Mobile and who know what is next. Better learn to adapt now :) .

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you very much sharing your knowledge! I'll think about considering to the latter one because of this. –  Eduardo Feb 1 '13 at 23:54

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