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By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2002-10-04 Print this article Print

: (Un)happy Techies Day to You?"> "I believe the number of [newspaper want ad] pages for IT jobs has shrunk by at least 50 percent [in Iowa]," she said. "Its simply changed the slant in which we presented our Techies Day workshops. I felt it would be a disservice to present this introduction to hardware and emphasize that this is the way to a good job. I have instead slanted the session to appeal to the delight that kids have in seeing whats behind the computer when they turn it on and run some programs. And I hope that interest in technology or science or whatever will later reward them." "Delight." It is a word that lately has been missing from conversations regarding IT careers. Yet it is a job benefit that provides perhaps the best assurance of filling the pipeline with young people so that the industry will not be understaffed in the future, when jobs finally return. One thing is certain: Delight is a more permanent attribute of the profession than are the promises of job security, high salaries and guaranteed jobs—long the sirens call to coax youth into entering the industry.
Those promises have proven empty to many eWeek readers (click here to read some illustrative reader mail), who have found themselves unemployed and underemployed. Indeed, scores of our readers are bitter with disappointment in the IT profession, filled with fear that years of hard work and countless hours and out-of-pocket dollars spent on training lately have amounted to nothing more than a pink slip.
Perhaps on Oct. 1, I couldnt bring myself to wish anyone a Happy Techies Day, but I can wish you all delight. Delight in mastering the intricacies of encryption. Delight in conquering whatever certification requirements face you. Delight in debugging code. But most of all, I wish you the profoundest delight: that of sharing the satisfactions of your work with the next generation of IT. IT Careers Managing Editor Lisa Vaas can be reached at

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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