# Going back to the industry after completing master's degree

It’s been more than 2 years since my last post, where I mentioned going back to academia to pursue a master’s degree in Computer Science. I have completed my degree for a few months now and I will retrospect on how it went.

#### What I wanted out of the degree:

1. Strengthening CS fundamentals
2. Learning new and advanced CS topics
3. Learning how to learn, as being a Software Engineer requires you to learn new technologies and techniques throughout your career.
4. Going into depths of each subject and exploring it.

#### Here’s what I could accomplish out of the above things:

1. Being from a non-CS background, I had to take some undergrad level courses which helped me cover CS fundamentals during my first semester.
2. I wanted to take courses related to security, but not not many good courses related to security were offered at UTD. I wanted to learn about Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing so I took some of the courses from there. Apart from this, I was mainly interested in systems-related courses, so I took some advanced courses related to those.
3. By taking diverse courses, I got to learn different technologies and topics. I feel that I am now better at learning new topics and going deep into technical problems.

#### Apart from the above, there are things that I did not expect to do/learn, but I did, and were well worth it:

1. Cooking
2. Importance of money
3. Time management
4. Mental Health

#### Future plans:

1. Better focus on physical and mental health. This is one of the biggest lessons this pandemic has taught us.
2. Will try to find ways to implement topics I learned during Master’s in a more industrial way.
3. Better learning at work. Not just following what I’m given to work on, but also trying to initiate improvements on whatever I’m working and leading the development.

#### Conclusion

This is what I feel right now:

A small sprint has ended during which I focused on academic learning. Now is the time for the marathon of life, where I have to get better in all fields of life, not just in CS.

##### Man Parvesh Singh Randhawa
###### Software Engineer

My interests include distributed computing, information security and Software Engineering.