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I am 19 and am a student in my second year of Software Engineering. Although I have no experience, I am trying to build programs using Unity and put it on Github to show employers that I have a portfolio of work to compensate for my inexperience.

I am meant to be applying for placements for my second year but I am having little luck as there are hundreds of applicants and a sparse number of placements around my location. I am reluctant to move out due to other problems but I see a lot of junior developer jobs. Is it possible for me to work as a junior developer for a year, do my last year then continue working? Maybe I can ask if they can take me on as an intern? Or is it not even worth my time or theirs for that matter that I apply to junior developer jobs while still studying?

  • I am reluctant to move out due to other problems but I see a lot of junior developer jobs. where is the job location? Your area or outside? – Sourav Ghosh Jan 6 at 7:33
  • You have a 3-year course? – Sourav Ghosh Jan 6 at 7:34
  • A junior developer would be expected to work office hours and stay for at least a year - would that fit in with your studies? – Robin Bennett Jan 6 at 9:22
  • It's a 3 year course, I am in my second year currently. Northwest of UK, Manchester area. – Xeno Xetric Jan 6 at 12:58
  • It would not fit in with my studies, I am in 5 days a week at university. Hence why I asked if I could possibly do a year and then back to uni then back to the workplace. – Xeno Xetric Jan 6 at 13:00
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Should I apply to Junior Developer jobs despite being in my penultimate year of my Software Engineering studies?

You can, but mostly it'll be of no use.

To elaborate, as it appears, you are looking for an internship role / position. You need to first understand the fact that the internship and full-time employment (including the junior positions) are not considered same.

  • The former is targeted towards making the participant aware of the industry process and gain hands-on knowledge which otherwise would not be possible to gain from institute curriculum. Usually the work assignment and performance review is based on the learning from the job, not only based on the actual outcome.

  • The later is a full time employment where the employee is expected to work as a part of the organization and deliver certain work assignments. The primary focus is on the fulfillment and delivery, the learning is over and above.

The process / method of work and the expectations out of these roles/ positions are not the same, and there are valid reasons why organizations do not treat them as equivalent.

If it's an internship - you need to apply for one and get one. Unless it's mentioned in the contract, an internship is not an employment and also vice-versa.

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I tried this and didn't have any luck

I gave this a shot, also during my 2nd year. I stuck out completely. If your university has a one year long internship program, you might give this a shot, but it probably won't make a difference.

The funding strategy for interns and the onboarding process for interns is quite different from that used for junior developers, so going from one to another is something many companies didn't want to do for me.

Results may vary by country, but it didn't work for me. I fired off piles of applications for junior developer jobs and did not get a response. It didn't help that I didn't have prior development experience.

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That's commendable that you want to contribute work to Github to show your stuff. But what you should really do to gain a good internship or job in general is network with those who can hire you or work at a company that can recommend you to a hiring manager. That will increase your chances much more than only applying with so many other applicants.

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